2009/02/19
WHL - Woolworths Holdings Limited - Unaudited Condensed Group Results for the 26 [JSE Securities Exchange - SENS]
 
WOWOW                                                                           
WHL - Woolworths Holdings Limited - Unaudited Condensed Group Results for the 26
Weeks Ended December 2008 and Cash Dividend Declaration                         
WOOLWORTHS HOLDINGS LIMITED                                                     
Registration number: 1929/001986/06                                             
Share code: WHL                                                                 
ISIN: ZAE000063863                                                              
UNAUDITED CONDENSED GROUP RESULTS FOR THE 26 WEEKS ENDED DECEMBER 2008 AND CASH 
DIVIDEND DECLARATION                                                            
highlights                                                                      
- retail turnover up 8.1%                                                       
- outstanding growth in Country Road                                            
- profit before tax and exceptional items up 18.1%                              
- adjusted HEPS up 26.9%                                                        
- interim dividend per share increased to 31.5 cents                            
consolidated income statement                                                   
                                                        Year ended 30 June      
                                                                      2008      
                                                                        Rm      
Revenue                                                            21 753.6     
Turnover                                                           20 064.9     
Cost of sales                                                      13 798.3     
Gross profit                                                        6 266.6     
Other revenue                                                       1 688.7     
Expenses                                                            5 948.7     
Store costs                                                         3 114.6     
Net bad debt and bad debt provision                                   584.3     
Other operating costs                                               2 249.8     
Operating profit                                                    2 006.6     
Finance costs                                                         502.5     
Earnings from joint venture                                               -     
Profit before exceptional item                                      1 504.1     
Exceptional item                                                          -     
Profit before tax                                                   1 504.1     
Tax                                                                   552.5     
Profit after tax                                                      951.6     
Attributable to:                                                                
Shareholders of the parent                                            943.1     
Minority shareholders                                                   8.5     
Reconciliation of headline earnings                                             
Earnings attributable to shareholders of                                        
the parent                                                            943.1     
BEE preference dividend paid                                          (6.7)     
Basic earnings                                                        936.4     
Profit on disposal of controlling interest in subsidiary                        
Profit on disposal of property, plant and equipment                     0.8     
Tax impact of adjustments                                             (0.2)     
Headline earnings                                                     937.0     
BEE expense                                                            53.8     
STC on share repurchase                                                20.0     
STC on special dividend                                                   -     
Adjusted headline earnings                                          1 010.8     
Headline earnings per share (cents)                                   115.7     
Earnings per share (cents)                                            115.6     
Adjusted headline earnings per share (cents)                          124.8     
Diluted headline earnings per share (cents)                           112.9     
Diluted earnings per share (cents)                                    112.8     
Adjusted diluted headline earnings per share (cents)                  120.8     
Special dividend per ordinary share (cents)                               -     
Dividend per ordinary share (cents)                                    79.0     
Dividend cover (based on headline earnings per share)                   1.6     
Dividend per preference share (cents)                                  11.1     
Number of shares in issue (millions)                                  795.5     
Weighted average number of shares in issue (millions)                 809.9     
Revenue                                                                         
Turnover                                                           20 064.9     
Woolworths                                                         18 129.4     
- Clothing and general merchandise                                  7 409.8     
- Foods                                                            10 360.3     
- Logistics services                                                  359.3     
Financial Services                                                     17.1     
Country Road                                                        1 918.4     
Interest                                                            1 359.8     
Other revenue                                                         328.9     
                                                                  21 753.6      
                                                 26 weeks ended December        
                                              2008         2007          %      
                                 Note           Rm           Rm     change      
Revenue                                    11 134.6     10 557.1        5.5     
Turnover                                   10 547.7      9 756.5        8.1     
Cost of sales                               7 258.9      6 706.9        8.2     
Gross profit                                3 288.8      3 049.6        7.8     
Other revenue                                 586.9        800.6     (26.7)     
Expenses                                    2 829.6      2 864.4      (1.2)     
Store costs                                 1 721.1      1 506.1       14.3     
Net bad debt and bad debt                                                       
provision                                     117.6        282.3     (58.3)     
Other operating costs                         990.9      1 076.0      (7.9)     
Operating profit                            1 046.1        985.8        6.1     
Finance costs                                 195.2        242.2     (19.4)     
Earnings from joint venture                    27.4            -      100.0     
Profit before exceptional item                878.3        743.6       18.1     
Exceptional item                     9        380.0            -      100.0     
Profit before tax                           1 258.3        743.6       69.2     
Tax                                  5        364.3        274.4       32.8     
Profit after tax                              894.0        469.2       90.5     
Attributable to:                                                                
Shareholders of the parent                    886.1        465.1       90.5     
Minority shareholders                           7.9          4.1       92.7     
Reconciliation of headline earnings                                             
Earnings attributable to                                                        
shareholders of the parent                    886.1        465.1       90.5     
BEE preference dividend paid        11        (5.2)        (4.5)                
Basic earnings                                880.9        460.6                
Profit on disposal of controlling                                               
interest in subsidiary               9      (380.0)            -                
Profit on disposal of property,                                                 
plant and equipment                            (1.4)        (0.2)               
Tax impact of adjustments                       0.4          0.1                
Headline earnings                             499.9        460.5        8.6     
BEE expense                                       -            -                
STC on share repurchase                           -            -                
STC on special dividend                        75.0            -                
Adjusted headline earnings                    574.9        460.5       24.8     
Headline earnings per share (cents)            62.8         56.9       10.4     
Earnings per share (cents)           6        110.6         56.9       94.4     
Adjusted headline earnings per                                                  
share (cents)                                  72.2         56.9       26.9     
Diluted headline earnings per                                                   
share (cents)                                  62.0         55.6       11.5     
Diluted earnings per share (cents)   6        108.8         55.6       95.7     
Adjusted diluted headline                                                       
earnings per share (cents)                     71.2         55.6       28.1     
Special dividend per ordinary                                                   
share (cents)                                  94.0            -                
Dividend per ordinary share (cents)            31.5         29.5                
Dividend cover (based on headline                                               
earnings per share)                             2.0          1.9                
Dividend per preference share (cents)           5.0          3.2                
Number of shares in issue (millions)          786.3        812.1      (3.2)     
Weighted average number of shares in issue                                      
(millions)                                    796.6        810.0      (1.7)     
Revenue                                                                         
Turnover                                   10 547.7       9756.5        8.1     
Woolworths                                  9 338.1       8867.7        5.3     
- Clothing and general merchandise          3 691.5       3714.5      (0.6)     
- Foods                                     5 449.8       4977.4        9.5     
- Logistics services                          196.8        175.8       11.9     
Financial Services                              4.0          8.7     (54.0)     
Country Road                                1 205.6        880.1       37.0     
Interest                                      457.5        663.8     (31.1)     
Other revenue                                 129.4        136.8      (5.4)     
                                          11 134.6     10 557.1        5.5      
consolidated balance sheet                                                      
                                                             As at 30 June      
                                                                      2008      
                                                                        Rm      
ASSETS                                                                          
Non-current assets                                                  2 798.1     
Property, plant and equipment                                       1 810.7     
Investment property                                                   105.9     
Intangible assets                                                     319.0     
Investment in joint venture                                               -     
Loans to customers                                                        -     
Prepaid employment costs                                               45.5     
Participation in export partnerships                                   66.3     
Other loans                                                           153.6     
Derivative financial instruments                                        3.1     
Deferred tax                                                          294.0     
Current assets                                                      3 023.7     
Inventories                                                         1 371.4     
Woolworths card debtors                                                   -     
Credit card receivables                                                   -     
Trade and other receivables                                           697.4     
Loans to customers                                                        -     
Derivative financial instruments                                       30.0     
Tax                                                                    99.3     
Cash                                                                  825.6     
Assets of disposal group classified as held for sale                5 440.0     
Total assets                                                       11 261.8     
EQUITY AND LIABILITIES                                                          
Capital and reserves                                                3 582.8     
Interest of shareholders of the parent                              3 530.7     
Minority shareholders' interest                                        52.1     
Non-current liabilities                                             2 267.5     
Interest-bearing borrowings                                         1 500.0     
Operating lease accrual                                               450.0     
Derivative financial instruments                                          -     
Post-retirement medical aid liability                                 251.2     
Deferred tax                                                           66.3     
Current liabilities                                                 3 209.4     
Trade and other payables                                            1 998.7     
Provisions                                                            213.3     
Derivative financial instruments                                       27.0     
Tax                                                                    54.1     
Interest-bearing borrowings                                           916.3     
Liabilities of disposal group classified as held for sale           2 202.1     
Total equity and liabilities                                       11 261.8     
Net asset book value - per share (cents)                              443.8     
GROUP ANALYSIS                                                                  
Total assets                                                       11 261.8     
Woolworths                                                         10 520.6     
Country Road                                                          741.2     
Inventories                                                         1 371.4     
Woolworths                                                          1 154.0     
Country Road                                                          217.4     
Approved commitment for capital expenditure                           681.2     
Woolworths                                                            486.1     
Country Road                                                          195.1     
                                                            As at December      
                                                         2008         2007      
                                             Note          Rm           Rm      
ASSETS                                                                          
Non-current assets                                     3 307.1      3 102.5     
Property, plant and equipment                    7     1 913.5      1 725.8     
Investment property                                      120.8        105.9     
Intangible assets                                7       293.9        314.5     
Investment in joint venture                     10       503.3            -     
Loans to customers                                           -        286.3     
Prepaid employment costs                                  41.0         59.8     
Participation in export partnerships                      65.7         69.9     
Other loans                                              143.0        149.1     
Derivative financial instruments                           0.7         36.2     
Deferred tax                                             225.2        355.0     
Current assets                                         5 613.3      8 337.0     
Inventories                                            1 551.8      1 473.2     
Woolworths card debtors                                      -      3 534.4     
Credit card receivables                                      -        966.2     
Trade and other receivables                              943.1        671.8     
Loans to customers                                           -        771.8     
Derivative financial instruments                         130.5          4.3     
Tax                                                       74.7         48.4     
Cash                                                   2 913.2        866.9     
Assets of disposal group classified as held                                     
for sale                                                     -            -     
Total assets                                           8 920.4     11 439.5     
EQUITY AND LIABILITIES                                                          
Capital and reserves                                   3 274.3      3 417.9     
Interest of shareholders of the parent                 3 234.9      3 373.8     
Minority shareholders' interest                           39.4         44.1     
Non-current liabilities                                2 340.6      3 989.3     
Interest-bearing borrowings                            1 500.0      3 179.0     
Operating lease accrual                                  449.4        434.1     
Derivative financial instruments                           9.2         18.6     
Post-retirement medical aid liability                    259.7        240.6     
Deferred tax                                             122.3        117.0     
Current liabilities                                    3 305.5      4 032.3     
Trade and other payables                               2 851.7      2 376.2     
Provisions                                               218.0        169.6     
Derivative financial instruments                          13.3          0.8     
Tax                                                      222.5        248.1     
Interest-bearing borrowings                                  -      1 237.6     
Liabilities of disposal group classified as                                     
held for sale                                                -            -     
Total equity and liabilities                           8 920.4     11 439.5     
Net asset book value - per share (cents)                 411.4        415.4     
GROUP ANALYSIS                                                                  
Total assets                                           8 920.4     11 439.5     
Woolworths                                             8 014.1     10 833.7     
Country Road                                             906.3        605.8     
Inventories                                            1 551.8      1 473.2     
Woolworths                                             1 323.8      1 273.7     
Country Road                                             228.0        199.5     
Approved commitment for capital expenditure              574.2        513.6     
Woolworths                                               553.4        440.2     
Country Road                                              20.8         73.4     
consolidated statement of changes in equity                                     
                                                        Year ended 30 June      
                                                                      2008      
                                                                        Rm      
Shareholders' interest at the                                                   
beginning of the period                                             3 289.4     
Movements for the period:                                                       
Issue of shares                                                        20.4     
Issue of BEE shares                                                       -     
Shares repurchased                                                  (200.0)     
Share repurchase costs                                                    -     
BEE transaction costs                                                 (3.0)     
Dividends to shareholders                                           (635.5)     
Share-based payments                                                   74.3     
Total income and expense for                                                    
the year                                                            1 037.2     
Total income and expense for the                                                
year recognised directly in equity                                     85.6     
Net fair value adjustments on                                                   
financial instruments                                                   1.4     
Exchange differences on translation                                             
of foreign subsidiaries                                                84.2     
Profit for the period                                                 951.6     
Shareholders' interest at the end                                               
of the period                                                       3 582.8     
                                                26 weeks ended December         
                                           Shareholders'          Minority      
                                         interest before     shareholders'      
                                              minorities          interest      
                                Note                  Rm                Rm      
Shareholders' interest at the                                                   
beginning of the period                           3 530.7              52.1     
Movements for the period:                                                       
Issue of shares                     8                15.7                 -     
Issue of BEE shares                                     -                 -     
Shares repurchased                  8             (152.5)                 -     
Share repurchase costs                              (3.4)                 -     
BEE transaction costs                                   -                 -     
Dividends to shareholders                       (1 149.5)            (10.8)     
Share-based payments                                 19.2                 -     
Total income and expense for the year               974.7             (1.9)     
Total income and expense for the                                                
year recognised directly in equity                   88.6             (9.8)     
Net fair value adjustments on                                                   
financial instruments                                74.4            (11.8)     
Exchange differences on translation                                             
of foreign subsidiaries                              14.2               2.0     
Profit for the period                               886.1               7.9     
Shareholders' interest at the end                                               
of the period                                     3 234.9              39.4     
                                              26 weeks ended December           
                                                         Total       Total      
                                                          2008        2007      
                                                            Rm          Rm      
Shareholders' interest at the                                                   
beginning of the period                                 3 582.8     3 289.4     
Movements for the period:                                                       
Issue of shares                                            15.7        12.7     
Issue of BEE shares                                           -         0.1     
Shares repurchased                                      (152.5)           -     
Share repurchase costs                                    (3.4)           -     
BEE transaction costs                                         -       (3.0)     
Dividends to shareholders                             (1 160.3)     (384.8)     
Share-based payments                                       19.2        31.2     
Total income and expense for                                                    
the year                                                  972.8       472.3     
Total income and expense for the                                                
year recognised directly in equity                         78.8         3.1     
Net fair value adjustments on                                                   
financial instruments                                      62.6         6.7     
Exchange differences on translation                                             
of foreign subsidiaries                                    16.2       (3.6)     
Profit for the period                                     894.0       469.2     
Shareholders' interest at the end                                               
of the period                                           3 274.3     3 417.9     
consolidated cash flow statement                                                
                                                                Year ended      
                                                                   30 June      
                                                                      2008      
                                                                        Rm      
Cash flow from operating activities                                             
Cash inflow from trading                                            1 308.9     
Working capital movements                                           (331.9)     
Cash applied to financial services assets                            (24.4)     
Cash generated by operating activities                                952.6     
Interest received                                                   1 351.1     
Finance costs paid                                                  (489.7)     
Tax paid                                                            (747.0)     
Cash generated by operations                                        1 067.0     
Normal dividend to shareholders                                     (635.5)     
Net cash inflow from operating activities                             431.5     
Cash outflow from investing activities                                          
Net investment in PPE                                               (568.5)     
Proceeds on disposal of controlling interest in subsidiary                -     
Replacement of WFS debt funding by joint venture partner                  -     
Cash disposed of on sale of controlling interest in subsidiary            -     
Costs incurred on disposal of interest in WFS                             -     
Other                                                                  58.1     
Net cash inflow/(outflow) from investing activities                 (510.4)     
Cash flow from financing activities                                             
Shares issued                                                          20.4     
Shares repurchased                                                  (200.0)     
Special dividend to shareholders                                          -     
Notes redeemed                                                      (436.0)     
BEE transaction costs                                                 (3.0)     
Share repurchase costs                                                    -     
Long-term borrowings raised                                         1 500.0     
Long-term borrowings repaid                                         (500.0)     
Net cash (outflow)/inflow from financing activities                   381.4     
Increase in cash and cash equivalents                                 302.5     
Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of the period            (422.6)     
Effect of foreign exchange rate changes                                29.4     
Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the period                   (90.7)     
GROUP ANALYSIS                                                                  
Cash inflow from trading                                            1 308.9     
Woolworths                                                          1 154.8     
Country Road                                                          154.1     
Gross capital expenditure                                             638.4     
Woolworths                                                            538.9     
Country Road                                                           99.5     
                                                   26 weeks ended December      
                                                          2008        2007      
                                              Note          Rm          Rm      
Cash flow from operating activities                                             
Cash inflow from trading                                  793.1       658.4     
Working capital movements                                 511.1      (99.6)     
Cash applied to financial services assets                  13.0      (88.8)     
Cash generated by operating activities                  1 317.2       470.0     
Interest received                                         454.4       661.7     
Finance costs paid                                      (225.2)     (237.7)     
Tax paid                                                (102.4)     (244.9)     
Cash generated by operations                            1 444.0       649.1     
Normal dividend to shareholders                         (410.3)     (384.8)     
Net cash inflow from operating activities               1 033.7       264.3     
Cash outflow from investing activities                                          
Net investment in PPE                                   (285.0)     (326.7)     
Proceeds on disposal of controlling interest                                    
in subsidiary                                             875.0           -     
Replacement of WFS debt funding by joint                                        
venture partner                                         2 822.2           -     
Cash disposed of on sale of controlling interest                                
in subsidiary                                           (535.1)           -     
Costs incurred on disposal of interest in WFS            (48.1)           -     
Other                                                      15.1        44.0     
Net cash inflow/(outflow) from investing                                        
activities                                              2 844.1     (282.7)     
Cash flow from financing activities                                             
Shares issued                                              15.7        12.9     
Shares repurchased                                      (152.5)           -     
Special dividend to shareholders                        (750.0)           -     
Notes redeemed                                                -           -     
BEE transaction costs                                         -       (3.0)     
Share repurchase costs                                    (3.4)           -     
Long-term borrowings raised                                   -     1 500.0     
Long-term borrowings repaid                                   -     (500.0)     
Net cash (outflow)/inflow from financing                                        
activities                                              (890.2)     1 009.9     
Increase in cash and cash equivalents                   2 987.6       991.5     
Cash and cash equivalents at the beginning of                                   
the period                                               (90.7)     (422.6)     
Effect of foreign exchange rate changes                    16.3       (3.6)     
Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the                                     
period                                                  2 913.2       565.3     
GROUP ANALYSIS                                                                  
Cash inflow from trading                                  793.1       658.4     
Woolworths                                                667.7       581.8     
Country Road                                              125.4        76.6     
Gross capital expenditure                                 294.7       362.0     
Woolworths                                                251.5       295.8     
Country Road                                               43.2        66.2     
segmental analysis                                                              
                                                        Year ended 30 June      
                                                                      2008      
                                                                        Rm      
Revenue                                                                         
Retail                                                                          
Woolworths                                                         18 242.1     
Country Road                                                        1 939.3     
Financial Services                                                  1 662.9     
Intra-group                                                          (90.7)     
Total Group                                                        21 753.6     
Profit before tax and exceptional item                                          
Retail                                                                          
Woolworths                                                          1 224.9     
Country Road                                                          101.0     
Financial Services (to 30 September 2008)                             158.1     
Share of earnings from joint venture                                            
(from 1 October 2008)                                                     -     
Net interest received                                                  20.1     
Total Group                                                         1 504.1     
Return on equity                                                                
Retail                                                                          
Woolworths                                                            50.5%     
Country Road                                                          18.1%     
Financial Services*                                                   10.0%     
Total Group                                                           27.6%     
                                                   26 weeks ended December      
                                              2008         2007          %      
                                                Rm           Rm     change      
Revenue                                                                         
Retail                                                                          
Woolworths                                  9 466.3      8 926.3        6.0     
Country Road                                1 212.3        884.4       37.1     
Financial Services                            476.4        792.9     (39.9)     
Intra-group                                  (20.4)       (46.5)                
Total Group                                11 134.6     10 557.1        5.5     
Profit before tax and exceptional item                                          
Retail                                                                          
Woolworths                                    635.4        611.8        3.9     
Country Road                                   90.9         48.2       88.6     
Financial Services (to 30 September 2008)      92.2         71.7       28.6     
Share of earnings from joint venture                                            
(from 1 October 2008)                          27.4            -      100.0     
Net interest received                          32.4         11.9      172.3     
Total Group                                   878.3        743.6       18.1     
Return on equity                                  %            %                
Retail                                                                          
Woolworths                                     38.1         56.5                
Country Road                                   26.1         18.5                
Financial Services*                            21.0          9.0                
Total Group                                    29.6         27.8                
* Return on equity for Woolworths Financial Services is calculated using the    
weighted average segmental equity for the period.                               
notes                                                                           
1 Basis of preparation                                                          
The interim financial statements comply with IAS 34 Interim Financial           
Reporting. These condensed consolidated financial statements do not contain all 
the information and disclosures required in the annual financial statements,    
and should be read in conjunction with the group consolidated annual financial  
statements as at 30 June 2008.                                                  
2 Significant accounting policies                                               
The accounting policies applied are consistent with those followed in the       
preparation of the consolidated annual financial statements for the year ended  
30 June 2008, except for the adoption of the following IFRS, IFRIC              
interpretations and amendments that became effective during the current period  
and had no significant impact on the reported results:                          
- IFRIC 13 Customer Loyalty Programmes                                          
- IFRIC 14 The limit on a Defined Benefit Asset, Minimum Funding Requirements   
and their Interactions                                                          
- IAS 39 and IFRS 7 Amendments - Reclassification of Financial Assets           
The following amendments to various standards relating to Cost of an Investment 
in a Subsidiary, Jointly Controlled Entity or Associate have been early adopted 
and had no impact on the reported results:                                      
IFRS 1 First-time Adoption of International Financial Reporting Standards and   
IAS 27 Consolidated and Separate Financial Statements.                          
3 Restatement of comparative figures                                            
Internally generated distribution costs previously included in other operating  
costs are included as part of cost of sales.                                    
Total operating costs are disclosed based on their function as retail costs and 
other operating costs in the income statement for the current and comparative   
period. Previously, operating costs were disclosed in the following categories: 
depreciation, employment, occupancy, net bad debts and bad debt provisions and  
other operating costs.                                                          
Computer software, previously included in property, plant and equipment, and    
goodwill are disclosed as intangible assets. Derivative financial instruments   
have been separately disclosed on the face of the balance sheet.                
Segment profit before tax for net interest received are disclosed separately    
from Woolworths retail. Segmental return on equity and profit before tax were   
restated due to a change in costs allocated to the Financial Services segment.  
None of these restatements had an impact on reported results.                   
4 Comparability of interim turnover                                             
No material variations in the turnover of the group are expected to occur       
between the first and second half of the financial year.                        
5 Tax                                                                           
The effective tax rate of 41.5% (2007: 36.9%) is higher than the standard rate  
of normal tax mainly due to the impact of STC incurred on the special dividend, 
STC on normal dividend and the non-deductible IFRS 2 charge arising from the    
group's BEE employee share ownership and executive share incentive schemes.     
6 Earnings per share                                                            
The difference between earnings per share and diluted earnings per share is due 
to the impact of outstanding options under the group share incentive schemes    
and preference shares issued in terms of the BEE employee share ownership       
scheme.                                                                         
7 Property, plant and equipment and intangible assets                           
During the twenty-six weeks ended December 2008, the group acquired assets with 
a cost of R294.7m (2007: R362.0m).                                              
8 Issue and repurchase of shares                                                
During the twenty-six weeks ended December 2008, 3 134 401 (2007: 2 818 254)    
ordinary shares were issued in terms of the group's executive share incentive   
scheme.                                                                         
86 871 694 treasury shares held by E-Com (Proprietary) Limited were             
repurchased and cancelled. 12 387 116 shares were repurchased from the market   
by E-Com (Proprietary) Limited and are held as treasury shares by the group.    
9 Exceptional item                                                              
On 1 October 2008, Woolworths Financial Services (Proprietary) Limited          
issued shares to Absa Bank Limited to the value of R875m resulting in the       
dilution of our shareholding to 50% less one share and a net profit on disposal 
of R380m.                                                                       
The carrying values of assets and liabilities of WFS at disposal were as        
follows:                                                                        
                                                                        Rm      
Loans to customers                                                  1 008.1     
Woolworths card debtors                                             3 461.0     
Credit card receivables                                               949.8     
Property, plant and equipment                                          11.2     
Cash                                                                  535.0     
Other receivables and deferred tax                                    184.9     
Interest-bearing borrowings                                       (2 179.0)     
Other payables, deferred tax and provisions                       (3 019.2)     
Net asset value at disposal                                           951.8     
Investment in joint venture retained                                  475.9     
The net profit on disposal is as follows:                                       
Proceeds on disposal of controlling interest in subsidiary            875.0     
Additional consideration receivable                                    29.0     
Net asset value of WFS disposed                                     (475.9)     
                                                                     428.1      
Costs incurred on disposal of interest in WFS                        (48.1)     
Net profit on disposal                                                380.0     
10 Investment in WFS joint venture                                              
The carrying value of the investment in the WFS joint venture represents the    
equity investment of R475.9m, plus retained income of R27.4m.                   
11 The Woolworths Black Economic Empowerment Employee Share Ownership Scheme    
During the twenty-six weeks ended December 2008, 44 327 (2007: 88 267 306)      
convertible, redeemable, non-cumulative participating preference shares were    
issued to employees of the group in terms of the Woolworths Black Economic      
Empowerment Employee Share Ownership Scheme.                                    
A share-based payment charge of R10.9m (2007: R25.5m) was recognised in other   
operating costs.                                                                
The ordinary shares expected to be issued at the redemption of the preference   
shares resulted in additional dilution of 0.7% for the twenty-six weeks ended   
December 2008.                                                                  
12 Contingent liabilities                                                       
The holding company provides sureties for the banking facilities and lease      
obligations of certain subsidiaries. In the opinion of the directors, the       
possibility of loss arising therefrom is remote.                                
13 Borrowing facilities                                                         
Unutilised committed banking facilities amount to R1 500m (2007: R1 900m). In   
terms of the Articles of Association, there is no limit on the group's          
authority to raise interest-bearing debt.                                       
14 Related party transactions                                                   
During the six months to December 2008, group companies entered into various    
transactions. These transactions were entered into in the ordinary course of    
business and under terms that are no less favourable than those arranged with   
independent third parties. All such intra-group related party transactions      
and outstanding balances are eliminated in preparation of the consolidated      
financial statements of the group.                                              
15 Approval of interim financial statements                                     
The interim financial statements were approved by the board of directors on 19  
February 2009.                                                                  
16 Unaudited results                                                            
These results have not been reviewed or audited.                                
Commentary                                                                      
Group results                                                                   
Group retail turnover grew by 8.1% for the twenty-six weeks to December 2008,   
reflecting the further slow-down in consumer spending, especially in the        
middle and upper income levels.                                                 
Gross margin decreased slightly from 31.3% to 31.2%.                            
Following the disposal of a controlling interest on 1 October 2008, Woolworths  
Financial Services is accounted for as a joint venture. This has impacted the   
comparability of group revenue, expenses and finance costs.                     
Profit before tax and exceptional items grew by 18.1%, with improved profit     
from Country Road and one-off benefits arising from the sale of a portion of the
Woolworths Financial Services business.                                         
The effective tax rate, excluding the STC on the special dividend, has          
decreased from 36.9% to 32.9%, mainly due to the reduction of both STC and      
corporate tax rates.                                                            
Adjusted headline earnings per share, which excludes a R75m STC charge on the   
special dividend paid on 15 December 2008, increased by 26.9% to 72.2 cents per 
share.                                                                          
An interim dividend of 31.5 cents per share (2007: 29.5) has been declared.     
Following the Woolworths Financial Services transaction, the company has        
returned cash to shareholders in the form of a special dividend of R750m and    
open market share repurchases of R352.5m. The company intends to continue the   
share repurchase programme. However, in the light of current economic           
conditions, we intend to take a more cautious approach in the use of our cash   
and the levels of borrowings.                                                   
operating review                                                                
Woolworths retail                                                               
Overall sales grew by 5.3%. We have, with no compromise to the quality, style   
and innovation that our customers expect from us, introduced more competitive   
opening price point merchandise.                                                
Clothing and general merchandise sales decreased by 0.6% for the period.        
Childrenswear showed good growth during the period.                             
Food sales were up 9.5% for the period. Our average food price inflation of     
12.1% is well below the average market inflation. The price movement of only    
9.0% reflects our customers' demand for our essential food items.  Prices are   
now more competitive and we are better positioned to cater for our customers'   
needs.                                                                          
Total footage grew by 7.1%, with an increase of 4.9% in clothing and general    
merchandise and 14.7% in food at the end of December 2008, compared to the      
prior year.                                                                     
Costs, were well controlled, growing by 1.6%.                                   
Woolworths financial services                                                   
Closing debtors' books at December 2008 were marginally up on the previous      
year and bad debts were well controlled. Income yields have improved.           
Country Road                                                                    
Country Road again outperformed the Australian market, delivering excellent     
sales growth of 22.0% and growing pre-tax profit by a record 83.8% in           
Australian dollars.                                                             
Outlook                                                                         
The economy is to remain depressed. Our challenge will be to continue to manage 
the impact of the significant shift in consumer spending and the downward       
pressure on prices, while retaining our difference of quality and innovation.   
Cost and inventory management will be key drivers to manage profitability.      
Despite the relief from recent fuel price cuts and a reduction in the interest  
rates, we expect trade to remain difficult through the rest of the financial    
year.                                                                           
DA Hawton                      SN Susman                                        
Chairman                       Chief executive officer                          
Cape Town, 19 February 2009                                                     
Cash dividend declaration                                                       
Notice is hereby given that the directors have declared an interim cash         
dividend of 31.5 cents per ordinary share for the twenty-six weeks ended        
December 2008.                                                                  
The salient dates for the dividend will be as follows:                          
Last day to trade to receive dividend                                           
Friday, 6 March 2009                                                            
Shares commence trading "ex" dividend                                           
Monday, 9 March 2009                                                            
Record date                                                                     
Friday, 13 March 2009                                                           
Payment date                                                                    
Monday, 16 March 2009                                                           
Share certificates may not be dematerialised or rematerialised between Monday,  
9 March 2009 and Friday, 13 March 2009, both days inclusive.                    
In accordance with the company's articles of association, dividends amounting   
to less than R5.00 due to any one holder of the company's ordinary shares held  
in certificated form will not be paid, unless otherwise requested in writing,   
but will be aggregated with other such amounts and be donated to a charity      
nominated by the directors.                                                     
An interim cash dividend of 5.0 cents per preference share for the twenty-six   
weeks ended December 2008 will be paid to the beneficiaries of the Woolworths   
Employee Share Ownership Scheme on 16 March 2009.                               
CL Lowe                                                                         
Group secretary        Cape Town, 19 February 2009                              
directorate and statutory information                                           
Non-executive directors:                                                        
Buddy Hawton (Chairman), Peter Bacon (British), Nigel Colne (British),          
Brian Frost, Mike Leeming, Chris Nissen, Sindi Zilwa                            
Executive directors:                                                            
Simon Susman (CEO), Andrew Jennings (British), Zyda Rylands, Norman Thomson     
Group secretary: Cherrie Lowe                                                   
Share code: WHL  ISIN: ZAE000063863                                             
Registered address (postal and physical):                                       
PO Box 680, Cape Town 8000                                                      
Woolworths House, 93 Longmarket Street                                          
Cape Town 8001                                                                  
Registration number: 1929/001986/06                                             
Auditors: Ernst & Young Inc and SAB & T Inc                                     
Bankers: The Standard Bank of South Africa Limited                              
Sponsor: Rand Merchant Bank (A division of FirstRand Bank Limited)              
Transfer secretaries:                                                           
Computer share Investor Ser vices (Pty) Limited                                 
70 Marshall Street, Johannesburg 2001                                           
visit our investor relations site: www.woolworthsholdings.co.za                 
Date: 19/02/2009 07:30:02 Produced by the JSE SENS Department.                  
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information disseminated through SENS.                                          
Source: JSE Securities Exchange - SENS
 
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