Expansion in Western Europe, plus demand for pre-pay and replacement mobiles, has allowed retailer to double in size
6 June (Bloomberg) ' Dixons Group subsidiary Elkjop, the Nordic region's leading retailer of consumer electronics, has announced the acquisition of the Danish out-of-town superstore chain SuperRadio from Fredgaard Radio A/S.
The acquisition creates a new market leader in out-of-town mixed electricals in Denmark.
The new stores have an average selling area of 23,000 square feet and will combine with existing outlets to double the size of Elkjop's El-Giganten chain of superstores in Denmark.
'This acquisition continues our strategy of rolling out successful group brands into new markets,' said John Clare, Dixons Group chief executive.
'The El-Giganten brand is a proven formula and the addition of these new stores will give us a clear leadership position in out-of-town electrical retailing in the Danish market.'
SuperRadio's seven stores sell a range of brown goods, computers and peripherals, software and communications products.
Six of the stores are currently co-located with Kokkenland, another Elkjop superstore format, which retails a complementary range of white goods and small domestic appliances.
The new stores will be rebranded El-Giganten. Total deal consideration is £23.9m, of which £18.2m is goodwill.
London, May 29 (Bloomberg) ' Carphone Warehouse Group, the mobile phone retailer, said annual profit rose 48% because of buoyed demand for pre-pay handsets and after it expanded in Western Europe through acquisitions.
Net income, excluding one-time items, in the year ended March 31 rose to £31.6m ($44.9m) from £21.4m a year earlier. Sales rose 59% to £1.1bn. Earnings including one-time items rose to 4.9p a share from 2.6p.
The retailer is winning business from customers buying replacement handsets as the market for first-time mobile phones approaches saturation. Carphone Warehouse doubled its size to take on rivals such as Dixons Group's The Link and bought Communications De Mobile Cellulaires, a French telecommunications company, to gain new European customers.
The stock rose as much as 5 pence, or 3.6%, to 144p. It first sold last July at 200p. The shares have fallen 29% this year after rising to a high of 227.5 on 13 December.
Chief executive Charles Dunstone, a former mobile phone sales manager with NEC, set up Carphone Warehouse with co-founder David Ross in 1989 when most mobile phones were used in vehicles. The company now has 1,059 outlets in 15 countries, having spent £109.3m last year on new stores and acquisitions.
'In a consumer market dominated by pre-pay we have continued to perform strongly by attracting a higher percentage of the valuable subscription based customers,' Dunstone said in an emailed statement.
Separately, the group said it bought CMC for £48m in cash to bolster its 141-store French retail network by developing closer ties with the country's phone operators.
CMC provides customer support and billing services to over 620,000 users on behalf of operators like France Telecom.
The company has about 3.6 million customers and is trying to lure new subscribers into entering one-year contracts that guarantee a constant stream of revenue. Its retail business grew 65% to generate £649m, more than half of total annual sales.
The company had a net one-time gain of £6.6m in the year ended March 31 2001 and a one-time loss of £5.1m in the year ended March 31 2000.
AOL Europe paid Carphone Warehouse £16.5m when it bought a 15% stake in Mviva, an internet portal with 220,000 registered customers.
'These are a strong set of results across the board,' said Paul Smiddy, an analyst at Credit Lyonnais Securities with a 'buy' rating on the stock.
'They're well placed internationally,' he added.
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