Fri, Aug 16, 2013 - Page 13 News List

Grand Ocean to slow expansion and concentrate on improving its outlets

By Amy Su  /  Staff reporter

Grand Ocean Retail Group Ltd (大洋百貨集團), which operates 16 department stores in second-tier and third-tier cities in China, is set to slow its expansion pace and shift focus to adjustment of its current outlets.

“Launching one new outlet per year would be the company’s new goal,” Grand Ocean chairman Yan Siwen (顏思文) told a media briefing ahead of the company’s investors’ conference yesterday.

Originally, the company planned to launch two to five new outlets per year in the coming years, but Yan said the company had decided to spend more time improving its management in existing outlets amid market changes.

However, the company will maintain its strategy to concentrate the expansion in cities in east, central and south China, such as Nanjing, Wuhan and Fuzhou, aiming to integrate group resources easily, he added.

Grand Ocean has put more focus on improving store quality and raising profitability this year, while closing three loss-making department stores in China’s Changzhou, Wuxi and Shijiazhuang cities.

The company posted a net profit of NT$183.7 million, or NT$0.92 per share, during the April-to-June period, compared with NT$54.85 million, or earnings per share (EPS) of NT$0.29, recorded a year earlier, supported by lower management and marketing expenses and stronger non-business profit by its currency hedge strategy.

Consolidated revenue in the second quarter reached NT$1.67 billion (US$55.6 million), up 5.3 percent from a year earlier, it said.

For the first half of this year, net profit stood at NT$427.74 million, or EPS of NT$2.14, improving from the level of NT$322.2 million, or EPS of NT$1.74, recorded in the same period last year, the company’s data showed.

Yang said the company is considering forming joint ventures with potential partners, especially in the food, beverage and entertainment sectors, to introduce more Taiwanese brands in China.

The company will finish market research by the end of this year and seek to cooperate with potential partners next year, he added.

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