Mitre 10 Annual Sales Rise

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Hardware chain Mitre 10 has lifted full-year sales by 10 per cent to exceed $1 billion for the first time, driven by demand in Christchurch and Auckland.

Sales rose to $1.04 billion in the year ended June 30, the retailer said.

The chain increased its distributions paid to members 11 per cent to $58 million, while share capital increased 5.1 per cent to $46 million.

“Our distribution to our members has grown at a higher rate than our sales number – that tells me that our margins are being maintained or improved and we have control on costs,” chief executive Neil Cowie told BusinessDesk.

“From that perspective we’re in great shape as a business.”

New Zealand is in the midst of a construction boom, as the Canterbury rebuild kicks into full swing and a bubbling housing market in Auckland boosts house-building.

Meanwhile, rising real estate prices in Auckland also meant more people were opting to “do-it-yourself” renovations rather than re-enter the housing market.

“We’re seeing it really across the board, if you look at renovations you’ll see things like bathrooms and kitchens and the typical DIY hardware stuff is also showing good growth,” Mr Cowie said. “As people feel more confident in the equity in their homes they would be more inclined to spend.

“When times are tough you don’t repaint the lounge when you don’t need to, you don’t paint the deck when you don’t need to, you don’t upgrade the garden.”

Mr Cowie said it had plans for three new stories to open next year.

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