19 May 2012

Briscoe Group embarks on investment programme

9:45 am on 19 May 2012

Briscoe Group is embarking on a $10 million investment programme in its stores.

The owner of Briscoes, Living and Giving and Rebel Sports is building new stores in Auckland and Blenheim, while revamping older ones throughout the country.

Speaking at the company's annual meeting in Auckland on Thursday, founder and 78% shareholder Rod Duke said the refits will create more selling space within stores and will help ensure the retailer continues to outperform the market.

He said Briscoes is also trialling a customer loyalty programme and plans to expand its range to include, for the first time, car care and gardening products.

Briscoe Group to distribute surplus cash

Briscoe Group is giving its shareholders a $21 million bonus dividend.

The retailer, which is sitting on a cash balance of $65 million, will pay the fully imputed 10 cents per share on 28 June.

The payout will see Rod Duke netting an extra $18 million.

Mr Duke said the company was outperforming the retail sector, but said it will be challenging to maintain sales levels in the second half of the year after last year's Rugby World Cup which benefited Rebel Sports in particular.

Mr Duke said the company still has enough cash in the bank to take advantage of acquisition opportunities should they arise in the future.

Meanwhile, Mr Duke said he doesn't plan to retire for several more years so hasn't given much thought as to who will succeed him when he does.