You’ll be wanting to know about those interims. We ourselves had the privilege of attending the presentation, and it was a perhaps less exuberant affair than usual. But a solid performance, reported Dr Basson, in tough conditions. Retailers, he confessed, have had a heck of a time of it these last six months, with low inflation, havoc resulting from a stronger rand, particularly when it comes to trying to earn a crust in African currencies, and the big boys competing ever more aggressively on price. So turnover up 9.4% to R36.26billion year-on-year, despite internal price deflation of 1.2%, and trading profit up 11.9% to R1.85billion. Market share, which still counts for something down in Brackenfell, is calculated at 34.5% with the competition, variously, coming in at 29% (the blue stripe), 25% (the cheerful green one) and 12% (the elegant black line). Once again, Usave delivered a rocking performance, growing sales a blistering 20 something percent. And Africa remains the continent of opportunity, with Nigeria, Ghana and Angola the jewels in its crown, challenges notwithstanding.
Comment: On Walmart, we remain a little cagey, referring to it in terms of jobs lost and gained and food security compromised, although there was a veiled allusion to competing ruthlessly on the price of food.