1998/11/12
TRADING CONDITIONS HAVE REMAINED DIFFICULT THROUGH THE FIRST QUARTER OF THE [JSE Securities Exchange - SENS]
 
12/11/1998 - 18:46:19

WOOLWORTHS CHAIRMAN'S STATEMENT AT AGM
TRADING CONDITIONS HAVE REMAINED DIFFICULT THROUGH THE FIRST QUARTER OF THE
YEAR AND INTO OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER. THE FULL IMPACT OF THE HIGHER INTEREST
RATES ARE NOW BEING FELT AND CUSTOMERS SIMPLY HAVE LESS DISPOSABLE INCOME. THE
WOOLWORTH'S CUSTOMER BASE IS PARTICULARLY AFFECTED BY THESE DEVELOPMENTS AND WE
HAVE CERTAINLY FELT THE AFFECT OF THIS IN OUR SALES. HAVING SAID THIS WE HAVE
GROWN MARKET SHARE IN TEXTILES DURING THE FIRST QUARTER AND HELD MARKET SHARE
IN FOODS.
COUNTRY ROAD HAS ALSO FOUND TRADE DIFFICULT AS THE SUBSTANTIAL SET BACK OF FAR
EASTERN ECONOMIES MAKES ITSELF FELT THROUGHOUT THE REGION.
AS WAS MENTIONED IN THE ANNUAL REPORT WE ANTICIPATED THESE CONDITIONS AND HAVE
BUDGETED BOTH BUSINESS VERY TIGHTLY. STOCK BALANCES AND EXPENSES HAVE BEEN KEPT
TIGHTLY UNDER CONTROL AND PROFIT BUDGETS HAVE BEEN MET FOR THE FIRST QUARTER.
WE BELIEVE THAT TRADE WILL CONTINUE TO BE DIFFICULT IN THE MONTHS AHEAD AND
ALTHOUGH INTEREST RATES HAVE COME DOWN THE DROP IS NOT YET SUFFICIENT TO
ENCOURAGE RENEWED GROWTH IN CONSUMER SPENDING. THE ALL IMPORTANT CHRISTMAS
PERIOD IS STILL TO COME THIS WILL OF COURSE HAVE A SIGNIFICANT INFLUENCE ON THE
RESULTS FOR THE HALF YEAR.
PRESS RELEASE
THURSDAY 12 NOVEMBER 1998
WOOLWORTHS
DIFFICULT TRADING CONDITIONS EXPECTED TO CONTINUE FOR WOOLWORTHS
AT TODAY'S ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING, SYD MULLER, CHAIRMAN OF  WOOLWORTHS INFORMED
SHAREHOLDERS THAT TRADING CONDITIONS HAVE REMAINED DIFFICULT THROUGH THE FIRST
QUARTER OF THE YEAR AND INTO OCTOBER AND NOVEMBER.
"THE FULL IMPACT OF THE HIGHER INTEREST RATES ARE NOW BEING FELT AND CUSTOMERS
SIMPLY HAVE LESS DISPOSABLE INCOME" SAID MULLER. "THE WOOLWORTHS CUSTOMER BASE
IS PARTICULARLY AFFECTED BY THESE DEVELOPMENTS AND WE HAVE CERTAINLY FELT THE
EFFECT OF THIS IN OUR SALES. HAVING SAID THIS WE HAVE GROWN MARKET SHARE IN
TEXTILES DURING THE FIRST QUARTER AND HELD MARKET SHARE IN FOODS".
COUNTRY ROAD HAD ALSO FOUND TRADE DIFFICULT AS THE SUBSTANTIAL SET BACK OF  THE
FAR EASTERN ECONOMIES MAKES ITSELF FELT THROUGHOUT THE REGION.
MULLER WENT ON TO REMIND SHAREHOLDERS THAT IN THE ANNUAL REPORT THE BOARD
STATED THAT THESE CONDITIONS HAD BEEN ANTICIPATED AND BOTH WOOLWORTHS AND
COUNTRY ROAD HAVE BEEN BUDGETED VERY TIGHTLY.
"STOCK BALANCES AND EXPENSES HAVE BEEN KEPT TIGHTLY UNDER CONTROL AND PROFIT
BUDGETS HAVE BEEN MET FOR THE FIRST QUARTER IN BOTH COMPANIES" SAID MULLER.
"WE BELIEVE THAT TRADE WILL CONTINUE TO BE DIFFICULT IN THE MONTHS AHEAD AND
ALTHOUGH INTEREST RATES HAVE COME DOWN THE DROP IS NOT YET SUFFICIENT TO
ENCOURAGE RENEWED GROWTH IN CONSUMER SPENDING. THE ALL IMPORTANT CHRISTMAS
PERIOD IS STILL TO COME, THIS WILL OF COURSE HAVE A SIGNIFICANT INFLUENCE ON
THE RESULTS FOR THE HALF YEAR."
ENDS
ISSUED BY:
BRUNSWICK SOUTH AFRICA
TEL: (011) 442 8803
CONTACT: SALLY-ANNE MOSS
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: SYD MULLER, CHAIRMAN, WOOLWORTHS HOLDINGS
CELL: 083 2516194
PRODUCED BY: PATIENCE MOATSHE 12-11-1998 11:30 SENS


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