Shareholders of New Zealand’s biggest retailer, The Warehouse, are to get a belated Christmas present – a special dividend.
The company said it will pay a dividend of 5 cents a share after a bumper Christmas trading season.
Chair Joan Withers said a strong rise in consumer demand, a 170 basis point increase in its gross profit margins, and gains from its restructuring made the payout possible.
“Given this elevated trading performance and following the decision not to pay a dividend for FY20, we have now decided to pay a special dividend of 5 cents.”
The Warehouse reaffirmed last month’s forecast of a half year profit of about $90 million, before the repayment of the $68m received in wage subsidies.
“Sales performance to date has been well above expectation and is a testament to our team members and the improvements they have made in our stores, distribution and fulfilment centres, and our support offices,” chief executive Nick Grayston said.
The company was criticised for taking support at a time when it was restructuring the business including closing stores, and making about 350 full time positions redundant.