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Frocks And the Digital World: David Jones Wins Big With Online Sales Up 1,000 Per Cent

Getty/ Graham Denholm

DJs has released its quarterly sales figures with some surprising results for its online business.

Sales growth for David Jones is flat-lining but its strategy to remake itself as an online friendly retailer is paying off.

Online sales increased by more than 1,000 per cent in the first quarter of this financial year just ended.

Compare that to total sales revenue of $424.2 million, up just 2.1 per cent.

Managing Director Paul Zahra says fashion and beauty continue to bring growth but the online sales were most pleasing.

“This business made a positive profit contribution (pre-depreciation) in its first full year of trading,” says Zarah, who’s leaving the company when a replacement can be found.

David Jones didn’t put a dollar figure for online other than to say it is about 1 per cent of sales which would make it about $4.2 million for the quarter.

There are clues to strategy in the latest David Jones annual report.

“Online retailing has not only resulted in increased competition, it has also resulted in greater
transparency of global pricing,” the report says.

“The company is also reducing the price of the international brands it stocks. There is a risk these price reductions will not be offset by higher volumes.”

The next test for David Jones is Christmas, a period where retailers traditionally pull in the cash as families shop hard for the holiday season.

Watch for the release next week of retail sales numbers by the Australian Bureau of Statistics for a pointer.

Meanwhile, the big Australia retailer will next week launch its Christmas Wow campaign developed with renowned filmmaker, illustrator and producer Quentin Jones. This will be launched across TV, print advertising, catalogues and digital forums.

The famous Harrods Christmas Hampers will also be available through David Jones.

And in Sydney and Melbourne the world’s first Liberty (UK) pop-up areas will appear at the Elizabeth Street and Bourke Street Mall stores.

Drawing in consumers working in the corporate world, David Jones has added Brooks Brothers to its exclusive as the Hugo Boss stockist.

The key takeouts from the quarterly David Jones report:

* New South Wales and Victoria stores are the strongest for sales.

* Online sales up more than 1,000 per cent in the quarter. Its relaunched webstore is 12 months old next week.

* Total Sales up 2.1 per cent to $424.2 million from the same quarter the previous year of $415.6 million.

* Like for Like Sales down 0.3% to $414.2 million from $415.6 million.

* Sales were up 0.6 per cent excluding the disruption impact of the Canberra Centre store

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