Wesfarmers sees online sales jump 57% after digital push


The brands owned by Wesfarmers Bunnings, Kmart Group, Officeworks and Catch.com.au delivered strong results during the year, totaling $ 3.3 billion in online sales alone.

In the company’s 2021 annual results, CEO Rob Scott said Wesfarmers saw a 57% increase in online sales as it bolstered its “digital capabilities.”

“We continue to view our digital operations as complementary to our in-store offering, with many customers benefiting from this omnichannel experience,” he said on Friday.

As part of this digital push, the retail giant is accelerating the development of a “data and digital ecosystem” to “deliver more transparent and personal experiences” to customers.

She recently appointed Australia Post Executive Managing Director Nicole Sheffield to lead the initiative in the newly created role of Managing Director of Digital and Digital Development.

“To support this initiative, we plan to invest in operating expenses of approximately $ 100 million over the next 12 months,” Scott said.

He added that “the wider investment around [the digital] ecosystem concerns in particular interfaces and customer data flows ”.

“Some of the additional features and improvements we are thinking of [of investing in] are going to be important for the future, ”he said.

Bunnings chief executive Michael Schneider said the brand has also taken “huge steps, not only in terms of technology and infrastructure, but also in terms of the quality of the technology.”

He highlighted projects such as the Bunnings Orientation App and the PowerPass App that have been launched over the past year.

Schneider also said its “click-and-deliver” service was under “a certain degree of pressure due to demand” after drivers were ordered to quit under Covid-19 restrictions.

However, he remains confident in Bunnings’ online competence to switch operations to a full digital experience if needed.

“In the Victoria regional area last week we got two hours’ notice to go from full open to 100% online for retail and the team did an amazing job so I think the models have been well established, that’s understood, “he said.

All of Sydney’s major stores have gone 100% online for retail this week to help ‘reduce movement’ during Covid-19.

Kmart Group, including Marketplace Catch, has been the primary contributor to Wesfarmers’ e-commerce success, with total online sales reaching $ 1.9 billion during the year.

Almost 50% of Kmart and Target’s online sales were made through “click and collect” features.

Wesfarmers CFO Anthony Gianott told investors that “continued investments in data and digital initiatives across the group” have helped push the company’s total capital expenditure to $ 896 million in the year. in fiscal year 21, an increase of 3.3% over the previous year.

“For fiscal 2022, we expect the group’s net capital spending to be between $ 1 billion and $ 1.25 billion,” he said.

Wesfarmers reported statutory after-tax net income of $ 2.38 billion and total group revenue of $ 33.9 billion, up 10% from the same period last year.

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