Virus lifts JB HiFi as customers stay home

Entertainment retailer JB HiFi has been buoyed by customers spending more on electronic equipment to shore their home offices during the coronavirus pandemic, posting a 21 per cent profit for the 2019/20 financial year.

The profit of $302 million came as sales rose 11.6 per cent to $7.9 billion across the group, which includes stores in both Australia and New Zealand and the Good Guys whitegoods retailer.

The group is paying a dividend increase of 47 cents per share – or 33 per cent – to $1.89 per share.

Australian sales accelerated from March as customers spent more time working, learning and seeking entertainment.

However New Zealand sales were impacted by the temporary closure of shops from March though to April.

JB HiFi said the group had seen a significant acceleration in online sales in Victoria during ongoing stage four lockdowns.

“This, combined with continuing sales momentum across the rest of Australia, has resulted in the group achieving strong sales in August to date,” the company said on Monday.

“While we are pleased with our start to (the financial year) and current trading, in view of the uncertainty arising from COVID-19, we do not currently consider it appropriate to provide sales guidance.”

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