Home' Greymouth Star : January 8th 2015 Contents Greymouth Star
6 - Thursday, January 8, 2015
of the New Zealand Herald
Warehouse Group, New
Zealand’s largest listed retailer,
expects first-half earnings to fall
about 20% as cold, wet spring
and summer weather forced it
to discount clothing and other
seasonal merchandise at its ‘red
sheds’ general merchandise stores
and sales declined at its Noel
Leeming consumer electronics
chain. The shares fell 7.7%.
The Auckland-based company
said adjusted profit will probably
drop to $37 million in the six
months ending January 25, from
$46.2 million in the year earlier
period. The company had previously
expected first-half profit would be
in line with last year.
Warehouse shares were the
worst performer on the NZX
50 benchmark index yesterday,
following the downgrade.
Investors and analysts have said
they want the company to produce
profit growth this financial year
after the retailer spent hundreds
of millions of dollars overhauling
stores and buying new businesses
in the past few years.
The company, which has previously
forecast a rise in annual profit,
will update its guidance when it
releases its first-half earnings on
“They have been trying to
reposition the business and invest
in it and it’s clearly not making
much of an impact,” Craig Stent,
a director and research analyst at
Harbour Asset Management said,
which doesn’t hold Warehouse
among its $1.2 billion in equities.
“It ’s a tough environment and
clearly that whole proposition may
have lost its shine,” Stent said.
“They are a large business so
getting any growth is pretty hard
in dollar terms and you have got
competing offerings in the market
chipping away all the time at your
product offering and it ’s pretty hard
to compete. ”
Harbour would need to see the
path for growth to invest in the
company again, Stent said.
“These guys have been trying to
get on that journey for the last two
or three years and it hasn’t really
materialised so it’s hard for us as a
growth investor to get too excited
about this sort of company.”
Stent ’s comments were echoed by
Nikko Asset Management ’s James
Lindsay, which also no longer holds
the stock among its investments.
“They have spent a lot of money
over the last few years and that just
hasn’t been showing great results
as far as getting either top-line
or bottom-line earnings uplifts,”
“The key driver still remains the
red sheds and sales are not really
going anywhere and margins are
Similarly, Nikko would need to
be convinced about the growth
outlook to invest again, he said.
“There would have to be a
sustained period of seeing that the
capex was going to be providing
ongoing uplift in sales and they
were going to return to growth and
that to me doesn’t seem likely.”
Shares in the company touched
$2.83, their lowest level since
September 2012, and were recently
down 24c at $2.87. Warehouse
shares are rated an average ‘sell’
according to the estimates of six
analysts compiled by Reuters.
Warehouse said the unseasonal
spring and summer weather meant
second quarter sales and margins
at its general merchandise stores
missed expectations, particularly in
Meanwhile, Noel Leeming sales
fell compared to the year earlier
period when sales were boosted
by a switch to digital tv, and as an
expected Christmas sales rush “did
“The combination of flat sales
and lower margins in the red sheds
and lower sales in Noel L eeming
have magnified the impact on first
half profits compared to last year,”
chief executive Mark Powell said.
“It is not expected that we will
see a similar level of decline in the
associated with the
rebranding of the company ’s Noel
Leeming and Torpedo 7 chains
were one-time items that impacted
the first half, and would not be
repeated in the second half, he said.
Warehouse said on-line sales at
its ‘red sheds’ stores increased
30% on the year earlier. However
Nikko’s Lindsay said that was not
enough to offset sluggish in-store
Tinder dry conditions across the
country have prompted fire bans to
be put in place for Central Otago,
and parts of Canterbury, and will soon
be ordered in Gisborne and parts of
Fire officers in Central Otago and
the Hauraki District were also on high
alert to fire danger, Radio New Zealand
National rural fire officer Kevin
O’Connor told Radio NZ dry
conditions meant fires could be caused
by simple things such as using a lawn
mower or a welder.
“ It’s really about communities being
aware of the risk and just managing in
Meanwhile, Canterbury authorities
have appeal for information to help
catch the person responsible for
suspicious fires in Waimakariri over the
past three months.
A plantation fire that blazed through
Pines Beach in north Canterbury on
Monday was being treated as suspicious.
Police were asking anyone who may
have noticed any suspicious activity in
the area to come for ward.
The blaze, which saw the evacuation
of 40 houses, began in a plantation
forest area 300m north of the car park
at Pines Beach, 4km east of Kaiapoi,
just before 2pm.
The region’s principal rural fire officer
Tim Sheppard told Radio NZ that
recently there had been fires in the
region that had fit a pattern.
“ We appeal to people to be vigilant
(and to) look out for cars in odd places
or activity that doesn’t usually occur
around your area.”
A teenage girl has drowned after her
paddleboard was swept under a boat by a
strong current and wind at Whangamata
Senior sergeant Graham Shields said
emergency ser vices were called to the wharf
off Beach Road at Whangamata Harbour
about 2pm after reports of a paddleboarder
trapped under a boat.
“At this stage we can’t confirm the exact
circumstances but it appears that the boat
was moored at the time and a teenage girl
on the paddleboard was swept underneath
by a combination of wind and a strong
current,” Mr Shields said.
People at the scene rescued the girl and
The resuscitation was taken over by
medical and ambulance staff when they
arrived but the girl could not be revived.
“A lot of people worked really hard to keep
her alive and our thoughts are with them
and her family,” Mr Shields said.
Some of the girl’s family had been at the
scene and they were being supported by
police. Police were now trying to establish
“ We will work with the Waikato Regional
Council harbourmaster to establish exactly
what occurred and see if anything can be
learned to prevent repeat incidents in the
future,” Mr Shields said.
The incident was a reminder of how
quickly a fun time on the water can go
“Seventeen agencies, including Police,
Surf Life Saving and the Waikato Regional
Council, who employ the harbourmasters,
have all been working under the umbrella
of the Safe Summer Coromandel campaign
to prevent deaths on the Coromandel this
“ Regional council staff in particular have
spent long hours on the water over the last
few weeks trying to keep people safe.
“At this point the agencies urge people
to take the time to identify what tides and
currents are doing and never underestimate
the power of moving water. Also be aware of
the limits of your own abilities in the water,”
Whangamata harbourmaster Steve Wise
said by the time he arrived on the scene,
St John staff, fi refighters and police were all
working to save the 15-year-old girl.
After quite a while they finally got a pulse,
and managed to stabilise her enough to get
her to the ambulance, he said.
It is understood the girl was airlifted to
hospital but died en route.
Mr Wise said the girl’s mother had rushed
down to the scene.
He helped comfort one of the girl’s four
or five mates, who had also been out in the
water on paddle boards in the main channel
about 100m off shore.
“ It appears the girl has fallen off and the
current has caught her and she was sucked
underneath a 26-foot yacht moored at the
wharf,” he said.
Mr Wise said the girl’s friends managed to
get the girl back on her paddle board and a
passing boat helped bring her to shore.
The girl, who was on a privately owned
paddle board, had been wearing a belt
pouch with a lifejacket, he said.
It was unclear whether the yacht was a
local vessel, but it had been moored there
between two poles for some time, Mr Wise
Mr Wise, who has been harbourmaster
for two years and deputy harbourmaster
for seven years, had been coming to
Whangamata for six decades.
“ I have never heard of anything like this
before. It ’s an absolute tragedy.”
It is not known whether the girl was a
local, or was holidaying at Whangamata.
of the New Zealand Herald
Kim Dotcom’s angry on-line
outpouring over the FBI’s new legal
move against his estranged wife
Mona has brought a sharp rebuke
from the Jewish community.
The under-siege tycoon shot out
13 tweets in two hours, attacking
prosecutors in the United States for its
attempt to shut down Mona Dotcom’s
claim to his legally restrained fortune.
In one tweet, he attacked Hollywood
for what he believes is its role in
driving the US prosecution.
“ What the US Govt is doing
reminds me of what I learned in
school about Nazi Germany. Ironic,
Hollywood is run by mostly Jewish
NZ Jewish Council president
Stephen Goodman said Dotcom
appeared to be raising the spectre of
the mythical “Zionist conspiracy that
runs the world”.
“ Weird,” he said. “It is offensive. It ’s
also totally incorrect. Yes, there was a
lot of Jewish involvement in the early
days of Hollywood. It doesn’t happen
nowadays. It ’s a corporate world.”
Dotcom has previously upset the
Jewish community after it emerged
he had owned a copy of Mein Kampf,
written by and personally signed by
Mr Goodman said the reported
purchase of the book as an investment
amounted to “profiting out of
“Nazi allusions are not just offensive
to Jews but to the whole of the New
Zealand community, in fighting
Nazism in the Second World War.
“The Nazism reference is insulting
to all New Zealanders.” — NZME
Challenging times ahead
Tinder dry conditions prompt fire bans
Girl, 15, drowns in
Dotcom tweets upset
A drunken “ buffoon” wandering
the central city on Boxing Day was
unimpressed with a policeman’s offer
to give him a ride home.
James Patrick Griffin was so
unimpressed with the offer that he
threatened to punch the officer in
Griffin began yelling obscenities to
the officer, who found him in Bell
Street, police prosecutor Sergeant
Drew Morrison told the Whanganui
District Court yesterday.
He continued threatening to
“punch his head in”.
Griffin had to be restrained by the
officer. He later apologised to police.
Defence lawyer Harete Hipango
said Griffin knew his actions were
totally unacceptable. “ He now accepts
he’s got a real issue and problem with
alcohol,” Ms Hipango said.
“First and foremost, he apologises.
This behaviour is fuelled by the
Griffin pleaded guilty to disorderly
behaviour and resisting police.
“This is the way I see it,” Judge
Dugald Matheson said.
“The day after Christmas you were
drunk in the middle of the road. You
would have seen things in the news
about drunks being run over in the
middle of the night. You were lucky
that you were obser ved by someone
and you were lucky that the police
came to help you.
“ You behaved like a buffoon and
you deser ve to be treated like a
He sentenced Griffin to nine
months’ super vision.
— Wanganui Chronicle
‘Buffoon’ threatened to punch cop
All the latest
news is now
where you are
in the world.
03 769 7900
To subscribe to the Greymouth Star
digital edition please visit
Links Archive January 7th 2015 January 9th 2015 Navigation Previous Page Next Page