9 Feb 2012

Boss of clothing retailer admits hard work ahead in Australia

7:05 am on 9 February 2012

The boss of Hallenstein Glasson admits it will take a lot of hard work to get its Australian stores generating acceptable profits.

Shares in the listed retailer rose 8 cents on Wednesday, after it lifted its half year profit forecast by a quarter, because of strong sales over the Christmas and January period.

In New Zealand, sales at stores open more than a year rose 8% across its Glassons chain, 5% at Hallensteins and 7% in its Storm chain. Same store sales also rose in Australia.

Chief executive Graeme Popplewell says it's good progress but maintaining that growth will be difficult.

He says consumers have been conditioned not to buy anything full price and the world economy is still not growing.

Mr Popplewell says he expects a steady environment but not a buoyant one.

He says rising rents in major shopping centres are also proving a major obstacle for the company.