Foschini earnings rise… Eyeing expansion into africa

JOHANNESBURG, MAY 29 – South Africa’s second-largest listed clothing retailer, Foschini Group, on Tuesday reported a 24 percent rise in full-year profit and said it plans to open 140 new stores over the next year.

All but 16 of the new stores it will open in the next year with be in South Africa.

The company also said it will be expanding into Mozambique and Nigeria over the next 2 years – two fast-growing economies fueled by commodity booms. The group operates in Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Lesotho and Swaziland.

The company has reaped rewards from decades-low interest rates and above-inflation wage hikes that have spurred consumer spending.

Foschini, which also sells home products and furniture, said diluted headline earnings per share rose almost 24 percent to 766.1 cents, just above an estimate of 764 cents in a poll of 14 analysts by Thomson Reuters.

The company said retail turnover increased 17 percent to 11.63 billion rand.

South Africa retail sales grew 6.8 percent year-on-year in March, the latest official data showed, beating a 6.6 percent growth economists polled by Reuters had expected. (Reporting by Ed Stoddard; Editing by Jon


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