Myer swings back into black amid turnaround strategy

Department store operator Myer Holdings posted annual profit of AUS$24.5 million as chief executive John King’s turnaround strategy put the struggling retailer back on track.

During his one year at the helm of Myer, King has overseen an overhaul which involves cutting jobs, reducing store size and closing some stores entirely, while focusing on higher-margin brands.

The 119-year old company swung back into the black for the year ended July 27, after making a loss of $386 million a year earlier. Myer missed a forecast of $31.8 million, according to Refinitiv Data.

The profit boost was delivered despite comparable store sales dropping 1.3%. Instead the result can be attributed to a $32.6 million reduction in costs and a halving of capital expenditure during the year. Online sales did jump by 25.6%, however.

“We have progressed a number of strategic initiatives, but recognise there is much more to be done to transform this business in the interests of customers and shareholders,” said King following the results announcement.

However, the chief executive pointed to a ‘challenging macro environment’ in the coming year, and noted that the high street stalwart was continuing to pursue additional store closures.