Sunday, May 26, 2024

Choppies turnover breaches P5 bn threshold

The Choppies Group, the market-leading mass grocery retailer in the country, shows a turnover that has crossed P5 billion with gross profit topping P1 billion, according to the group’s financial┬áresults for the year ended 30 June 2014.

Its retail space has also increased by 46 percent to 155,955 sq m. The group opened a new distribution centre in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe.

Revenue went up by 24 percent with gross profit also going up by 31 percent and EBITDA increasing by 29 percent.

Listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) in January 2012 after it received BSE’s approval to float 1.2 billion shares on the domestic main board, the group said in┬áaccordance with its long term strategy during the year, it opened 13 stores in┬áBotswana (including six Supa Save Stores), 10 stores in South Africa, acquired 10 stores in┬áZimbabwe and, post-acquisition, added three more stores in Zimbabwe.

“In┬áSouth Africa, the strike in the platinum mining sector affected the performance of the South African stores in the second half of the year resulting in a loss for this segment. Out of the 26 stores operated, 16 are in strike affected areas,” reads the financial statement.

Revenue has suffered by up to 40 percent in these stores but the performance has improved since the end of the strike.
The group says it remains confident that the investment in their infrastructure in South Africa will support the long term growth strategy in the country.

A close look at Zimbabwe performance shows that operations have been highly encouraging, and the group stated that it intends to expand its presence in the country.

┬á“Botswana remains our core market, and performance of the business continues to be positive and stable. We are planning to open six more stores in South Africa, four in Botswana, and five in Zimbabwe by the end of December 2014,” reads the statement signed by both┬áthe Chairman Festus Mogae and CEO Ram Ottapathu.

Choppies indicated that it continues to evaluate expansion opportunities in existing and new markets, adding that they are in the advanced stages of entry into new markets in Southern and East Africa.

The market leading mass grocery retailer in the country highlighted that during the year, the board added Peter Baird, Africa Head of Standard Chartered Private Equity, as a non-executive Director and also recently appointed Sydney Muller as an independent non-executive director.

 At the beginning of 2014, Choppies revealed that it is working on a secondary listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) as the retailer expands in the region.

At the same time Ottappath said that a secondary listing on the JSE will expose the group to a new universe of South African, regional and international investors whose investment mandate is limited to JSE-listed shares.

“JSE is the leading securities exchange in Africa and one of the most liquid and well-regulated in both emerging company, it is a natural choice for the them as they consider a secondary listing that also in and developed markets,” said┬áOttappath.

Its gross final dividend of 4.5128 thebe per share in respect of the year ended 30 June 2014 was declared on 16 September 2014, for payment to those ordinary shareholders registered in the books of the Company at the close of business on 17 October 2014.


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