Chief executive Xavier Simonet had spent barely 24 hours at the helm of Kathmandu before the struggling outdoor gear retailer faced a takeover from Briscoe Group in June 2015. Briscoe Group had quietly accumulated 4.9 percent in Kathmandu shares over time, and secured a further 14.9 percent from shareholders at $1.80 per share.
It announced a takeover offer for the remaining 80.1 percent in June in cash and scrip, but Kathmandu’s board urged its shareholders to reject it on the grounds that it was inadequate and did not reflect the value of the company. The offer expired in September.
Simonet, who came to Kathmandu from London-based accessories label Radley, said today that these latest financial results were in line with expectations: “Operating margin improvement was achieved as a result of increased full price sell through combined with implementing planned cost efficiencies.”
Kathmandu has copped some criticism in the past for its discount-driven strategy. Now, it has reported an increase in sales of 9.3 percent to $196 million, with same-store sales growth and strong online sales recorded in all markets. Ecommerce made up 6.6 percent of total sales, representing a lift of nearly 25 percent.
Three new stores in Australia were opened in the first half of FY2016, plus one in New Zealand.
Kathmandu’s full-year result will be in part dependent on what happens this weekend, Simonet says.
“While it is good to be on track with our plan for the first half, as in every year, the full year result is highly dependent on the sales and margin achievement in our Easter and winter campaigns. We have just commenced our Easter sale so it is too early to provide an update on this promotion.”
We remain committed to offering great value, innovative, distinctive and quality products to our customers and providing a seamless shopping experience whether instore or online.”
He confirmed the company is expecting a full year net profit of $30.2 million. The company’s shares are currently sitting at $1.68, up 3.5 percent on this time last year.