Revenue and net profit¹ increased by 19.8% and 34.0% YoY respectively Proposed a final dividend of HK6.0 cents per share

Hightlights:

  • Revenue increased by 19.8% to approximately HK$1,288.5 million.
  • Gross profit increased by 26.9% to approximately HK$434.4 million, gross profit margin increased by 1.9 percentage point to 33.7%.
  • Netting off one-off non-recurring listing expenses, profit attributable to owners of the Company increase by 34.0% to approximately HK$780 million.
  • As at 31 March 2019, the Group operated a total of 89 chain retail stores in Hong Kong (as at 31 March 2018: 70).
  • Basic earnings per share was 7.4 cents. The Board recommended the payment of final dividend of HK6.0 cents per share.


Financial Highlights:

 

For the year ended 31 Mar

HK$'000

2019

2018

Change

Revenue

1,288,479

1,075,930

+19.8%

Gross profit

434,440

342,289

+26.9%

Gross profit margin

33.7%

31.8%

+1.9 p.pt.

Profit attributable to owners of the Company (Netting off one-off non-recurring listing expenses)

78,013

58,235

+34.0%

Basic earnings per share (HK cents)

7.4

7.1

+4.2%


HONG KONG, CHINA - Media OutReach - 27 June 2019 - Best Mart 360 Holdings Limited ("Best Mart 360" or the "Company", together with its subsidiaries, the "Group"; stock code: 2360.HK), the second largest leisure food retailer in Hong Kong² , announced its annual results for the year ended 31 March 2019 ("Financial Year"). During the financial year under review, the revenue recorded by the Group amounted to approximately HK$1,288,479,000, representing an increase of approximately 19.8% as compared to approximately HK$1,075,930,000 for the year ended 31 March 2018. The increase was mainly attributed to the combined effects of same-store sales growth and the increase in the number of retail stores, as well as the improvement in the Group's procurement capabilities in sourcing products with competitive prices that are attractive to the customers.


During the financial year under review, profit attributable to owners of the Company was approximately HK$59,728,000 (2018: approximately HK$53,599,000), representing an increase of approximately 11.4%. Netting off the incurrence of the one-off non-recurring listing expenses, the profit attributable to owners of the Company for the year ended 31 March 2019 would be approximately HK$78,013,000, which represented an increase of approximately 34.0% as compared with approximately HK$58,235,000 for the year ended 31 March 2018.


During the financial year under review, basic earnings per share was 7.4 cents (2018: 7.1 cents). The Board recommended the payment of final dividend of HK6.0 cents per share.


BUSINESS REVIEW


Same-Store Sales Performance


The growth in revenue of the Group was not only driven by the increase of the number of the Group's retail stores, but also by the Group's capability to grow its sales within the existing retail stores. The Group assesses its growth within the existing retail stores by calculating the same-store sales growth, which compares revenue derived from the retail stores that were in operation throughout the financial periods compared. The Group consecutively achieved same-store sales growth during the past three financial years. During each of the three financial years ended 31 March 2019, the management had taken cautious approach in regulating and controlling the balance between realizing same-store sales growth and procuring the growth of gross profit margin in accordance with market trend and condition so as to achieve optimal business performance and operating results for the Group.


 

For the year ended 31 Mar

 

2016

2017

2017

2018

2018

2019

No. of same-store

18

26

45

Same-store sales (HK$'000)

268,034

271,461

400,656

435,722

751,335

802,265

Same-store sales growth rate

1.3%

8.8%

6.8%


Gross Profit and Gross Profit Margin


Gross profit of the Group for the year ended 31 March 2019 was approximately HK$434,440,000, while gross profit of the Group for the year ended 31 March 2018 was approximately HK$342,289,000. During the financial year under review, gross profit margin of the Group was approximately 33.7%, representing an increase of approximately 1.9 percentage points as compared with approximately 31.8% for the year ended 31 March 2018. The increase in gross profit margin was mainly attributed to (i) the Group's continual effort in sourcing products directly from more upstream suppliers; (ii) the discount from suppliers as a result of bulk purchase which was benefited from better economy of scale with the Group's continuous expansion of retail network and hence the scale of purchases; and (iii) the effective pricing policy implemented by the Group.


Chain Retail Stores


As at 31 March 2019, the Group operated a total of 89 chain retail stores in Hong Kong (as at 31 March 2018: 70). During the financial year under review, the Group opened 28 new stores and closed nine retail stores due to consolidation of business of stores in proximity or upon expiration of the respective lease term.


As at 31 March 2019, the 89 retail stores of the Group consisting of 17 retail stores located in Hong Kong Island, 33 retail stores located in Kowloon and 39 retail stores located in New Territories and 32 retail stores situated at street-level, 50 retail stores situated at shopping arcades of community or residential districts and seven retail stores situated at various traffic hubs that are easily accessible by tourists, which spanned over all of the 18 districts in Hong Kong.


Rental expense for retail stores was approximately HK$132,919,000 for the year ended 31 March 2019, representing an increase of approximately 18.2% as compared with approximately HK$112,472,000 for the year ended 31 March 2018. The percentage of rental expense of retail stores to sales revenue for the year ended 31 March 2019 was approximately 10.3%, which was slightly lower than that of approximately 10.5% for the year ended 31 March 2018.


Employees


Employees are crucial to the sustainable development of the Group's business, in particular, front-line staffs constituted material labour force to the Group's retail business. The staff costs (excluding the Directors' emoluments) for the year ended 31 March 2019 amounted to approximately HK$119,373,000 (2018: approximately HK$87,676,000).


The Products


For the year ended 31 March 2019, the Group offers a total of 3,261 SKUs of products (for the year ended 31 March 2018: 3,427 SKUs) from suppliers principally from overseas markets, such as Japan, Europe, the United States, Korea and countries in the South East Asia, and brand owners or importers in Hong Kong.


For the year ended 31 March 2019, approximately 41.5% of the products were procured from suppliers and brand owners or importers in Hong Kong (for the year ended 31 March 2018: approximately 41.0%), while the share of import products from Japan, Europe and the United States amounted to approximately 16.4%, 13.9% and 10.7% respectively of the whole procurement (for the year ended 31 March 2018: approximately 16.1%, 11.8% and 15.6% respectively).


As at 31 March 2019, the total inventories of the Group amounted to approximately HK$132,839,000 (2018: approximately HK$100,162,000), representing an increase of approximately 32.6% which was mainly due to the increase in the number of retail stores in the financial year under review resulting in the increases in both in-store inventories and inventories in warehouses.


Besides, the Group also actively pursues suitable opportunity in developing private label products that on one hand allow the Group to capture advantages of pricing and   exercise higher level of quality control on its products and on the other hand further uplift its brand awareness and market visibility. As at the date of this announcement, the Group has launched seven private label brands of products, including wet tissues, chestnuts, canned abalone, dried fruits, aloe gel and pork jerky.


Membership Scheme


Given that the retail business of the Group is a consumer driven business, the Group placed substantial efforts in developing and reinforcing its customer base. To this end, the Group established and maintained a membership scheme since April 2015 in order to promote consumer loyalty, stimulate sales and further expand customer base. During the financial year under review, the number of the Group's members was increased to approximately 1,268,000 as at 31 March 2019 from approximately 792,000 as at 31 March 2018, representing an increase of approximately 60.1%.


To further popularise and elevate the Group's brand positioning and brand recognition the market and further expand members' coverage of the Group, the Group launched its mobile app in March 2019 to strengthen its capability in instant messaging as communication channel with the public and its members. By the Group's mobile app, the general public is allowed to receive instant information through mobile devices for the Group's promotional offers, selective products promotion, retail shops network and member privileges and its members are able to check their reward points recorded and redeem their reward points through mobile devices instantly and thereby enhance customer shopping experience and purchasing pleasure with the Group. Since the launch of the mobile app in March 2019, approximately 93,000 members had been registered through the Group's mobile app up to 25 June 2019.


OUTLOOK


Looking ahead, the Group is prepared to expand its business scope and market influence and to further uplift its market position by (i) expanding the Group's business scale by opening additional retail stores in Hong Kong; (ii) exploring the opportunity to penetrate into other retail markets in the Greater China region should suitable opportunity arises; (iii) continuously optimizing the Group's supply chain and further refining the Group's procurement capabilities by identifying additional suppliers for products with quality and uniqueness and by lowering procurement costs through sourcing from more upstream suppliers for increasing the Group's competitiveness in the sector; (iv) accelerating the pace of developing additional private label products that intensifies proprietariness of the Group's products which provide both costs advantages and quality control and maximize customers' loyalty and uplift the competitive strengths of the Group; (v) expanding the dimension of the Group's marketing efforts to further enhance the Group's corporate image and to promote the Group's products; (vi) pursuing digital transformation of the Group's retail operation with a view to provide customers with progressive shopping experience accustomizing digital transformation in New Retail Era; (vii) continuously improving the Group's operational efficiency by upgrading existing information technology systems and adopting new information technology systems for streamlining operation process and reducing operational costs; (viii) pursuing higher level of systematical management of retail stores; and (ix) increasing staff training for enhancing service quality.


Mr. Hui Chi Kwan, Chief Executive Officer of the Group, said, "During the financial year under review, the Group managed to maintain sustainable growth in both revenue and profit and had demonstrated our resilience in operating satisfactorily with pressure despite sailing under the midst of economic uncertainties that affected overall consumption sentiment due to the outburst of US-China trade tension in the second half of year 2018. We are committed to strengthen our core capabilities to keep on improving business performance and operating results so as to maintain sustainable growth of the Group and to present satisfactory results and bring favourable returns to our shareholders."




[1]Netting off one-off non-recurring listing expenses

[2] In terms of revenue for the year ended 31 March 2018


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