Total sales for the year increased by 5.3% and comparable sales grew by 1.5% with product inflation of 4.8%. South African total and comparable sales growths were higher in the second half of 2016 while ex-SA sales growth in Rands slowed dramatically.
Our two-year focus on Game’s merchandise execution and addressing in-store and supply chain costs manifested in a strong trading margin and expense performance, and so Massdiscounters’ trading profit before interest and tax increased by 54.8%. DionWired had an exceptional year with good sales, despite a very challenging environment, and an impressive profit performance.
In the last quarter of 2016 we successfully trialled the new SAP point-of-sale system in 12 Game stores in South Africa. We have therefore started the next phase of the point-of-sale roll-out, with all Game and DionWired stores in SA likely to be converted by June 2017. The more significant SAP ERP systems’ implementation remains on schedule for mid-2018.
Our Fresh roll-out continues with 88 Game stores now offering this category. Although not yet in all stores, Food and Liquor sales participation is already 23% and is achieving comparable growth of 11%. Four Game stores (including one in Kenya and one in Zambia) were opened, whilst two DionWired stores were opened and two closed, increasing trading space by 2.3% to 545,094m².
Total sales for the year increased by 11.0% and comparable sales grew by 7.6% with product inflation of 6.5%. Total sales growths in Food and Liquor are higher than 11% while the lower General Merchandise sales are reflective of soft discretionary spending. There were significant cost pressures within the business, including new store pre-opening costs of R17.4 million, resulting in an increase in trading profit before interest and tax of 4.4%.
Online sales more than doubled for the year and we continue to expand and improve the online offering.
New Fruitspot facilities, which will improve our internal and external distribution efficiencies, were opened in Cape Town and Durban in the latter part of 2016.
The April 2016 opening of a new Makro store near Carnival Mall, east of Johannesburg, and an extension to the Strubens Valley store, in Johannesburg west, increased trading space by 11.3% to 217,907m².
Massbuild grew total sales for the year by 5.6%, with comparable sales increasing by 1.7% and product inflation of 4.7%. Sales growth in our South African stores improved slightly in the second half of 2016 as a result of more effective promotions and good merchandise execution while our ex-SA stores’ sales growth in Rands decelerated markedly given the weakening economies in those countries.
Given the sales pressures and despite good expense control, the increase in Massbuild’s trading profit before interest and tax was 2.7%.
A pilot online offering for our contractor customers has progressed well. The online proposition is exceptional with rich data and broad functionality, and will be available for general use shortly.
One Builders Warehouse store was closed in Mozambique. Two Builders Express stores and two Builders Superstores were opened; and one Builders Trade Depot store was closed in South Africa. Net trading space remained similar to 2015 at 449,212m².
Total sales increased by 7.5%, comparable sales increased by 7.9% with product inflation of 9.3%. Lower-income consumer demand was slightly mitigated by high Food inflation, particularly in commodities. Competition and price-pressure was intense in both Retail and Wholesale but both businesses responded very effectively. Cambridge and Rhino performed well, growing comparable sales above 10%.
Effective margin management and good cost control enabled Masscash to grow trading profit before interest and tax by 28.2%.
Four Wholesale stores were closed; and eight Retail stores were opened and two closed, resulting in net trading space decreasing by 4.3% to 356,531m².
*Trading profit before interest and taxation