Harvey Norman Share Take A Battering As Ackery + Page Sell Down Shareholding
Harvey Norman shares are taking a battering, after it was revealed that both Katie Page and the head of consumer electronics and electrical David Ackery, an 11-year veteran at the mass retailer, sold down shares in Harvey Norman who are facing a battering from Amazon if they launch in Australia.
Yesterday, Harvey Norman shares fell nearly 10%, since February when the Company announced increased profits without explaining how much consumer electronics and appliances had contributed to the Companies earnings, their share value has fallen 16%.
Earlier this month ChannelNews revealed that Ackery the General Manager of Electrical sold down $1.5M shares. This came a day after the partner of Harvey Norman Chairman Gerry Harvey sold down $1.06M dollars’ worth of shares.
It’s also been revealed that as the Companies share value was falling yesterday, Gerry Harvey moved into the market snapping up 2 million shares for $8.7 million.
Currently Ackery still holds 335,800 shares and 150,000 performance rights in the Company. He also has an indirect interest in 153,335 shares held in trusts.
It’s also been revealed that Ackery had to repay a loan facility with ANZ Private Global Wealth, which was secured by 658,619 shares, this was repaid in full on March 15.
According to the Australian Financial Review Harvey Norman observers believe the share sales may be the first signs of a wider sell-down as executives and insiders seek to cash in before headwinds from the buoyant housing cycle peter out and online retailer Amazon ramps up its presence in Australia.
After reaching eight-year highs of $5.38 Harvey Norman shares are today trading at $4.36.
Credit Suisse believes that, depending on Amazon’s impact, Harvey Norman’s earnings could fall between 3 and 9 per cent, while a Citigroup report last year estimated the retailer’s profits could fall 19 per cent. Despite these concerns, only 3.8 per cent of Harvey Norman shares are sold short.
“The impact of Amazon on group [earnings] is mitigated by [Harvey Norman’s] product range and business outside of Australia,” said Credit Suisse analyst Grant Saligari.