Sales lift boosts Baby Bunting’s HY profits

Baby Bunting1

Baby goods retailer Baby Bunting says the opening of new stores and growth in sales have helped lift its pro-forma half-year profit 22.5 per cent to $5.7 million.

Sales revenue on a pro-forma basis rose 18 per cent to $135.1 million for the half-year ended January 1, compared to the prior corresponding period, which included Baby Bunting’s debut on the Australian Securities Exchange.

The company posted an 8.2 per cent comparable sales growth and a statutory EBITDA of $9.8 million, up 87.4 per cent from the previous corresponding period. Pro forma EBITDA rose 23.3 per cent to $10.4 million from the prior corresponding period.

Australia’s largest specialty baby goods retailer reported an interim dividend of 2.9 cents per share, fully franked.

“We have delivered a solid result for the first half of FY2017,” said Matt Spencer, CEO and managing director.

Spencer said the results were in line with their expectations and it “had anticipated that comparable stores sales growth would moderate to be more in line with the long term historical average – being mid-single digit growth.”

Spencer said the company has continued to expand its network by four stores in the half year, including two stores in Sydney, which, according to him, is their largest market opportunity in Australia.

“Complementing our store roll-out has been the very pleasing growth of our online channel which continues to expand at a rapid rate.”

During the half, the company opened its 40th store at Belrose, a suburb in the northern beaches of Sydney. Stores were also opened in Camperdown (in inner Sydney), Preston (a northern suburb of Melbourne) and Baldivis (in the south of Perth).

Baby Bunting stated its network plan has a target of growing the store network to over 80 stores and the company aims to open between for and eight new stores each year. For the remainder of the financial year, the company expects to open another three new stores.

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