Harvey Norman: ‘Last Man Standing’?
Gerry talked up his business yesterday as it announced profit slump of 36.5% and sales slump of 8.6% (-6.3% like-for-like) in Australia.
However, Harvey did report rising sales in January of 4.1% and 5.8% like-for-like, which Harvey says lifted morale ‘
‘Consumer confidence levels have risen recently and, because of that, you’ve now got weekly sales in January and February exceeding last year,” Harvey Norman Chairman Gerry Harvey said yesterday.
”For the first time in a very long time, we now have sales that are up. That’s lifted the morale here somewhat.”
”You’ve had so many retailers go out of business in the last couple of years and there’s probably more to go,” he warned.
However, the billionaire hopes his retailer won’t be one of the fallen soldiers, and will be the “last man standing”.
Harvey admitted one thing that may help his retail operation: Divine intervention.
“Pray. It might have more effect than anything else,” Mr Harvey declared when asked how January’s good figures might be maintained.
But if God fails Harvey it is also talking up its onmi channel strategy between online, mobile and its stores, which one analyst says will be an “uphill battle” for the retailer to achieve.