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New Zealand store chain reacts to ‘explosion’ in retail crime


The owner of one of New Zealand’s largest suppliers of fishing tackle has significantly increased security initiatives to improve the safety of its staff after suffering a worrying ‘explosion’ in retail crime.

The Briscoe Group, owner of the Rebel Sports chain, says that a widely reported rise in crime across New Zealand continues to have ‘significant operational as well as economic impact on the business’.

Group Managing Director Rod Duke told investors at its half-year results presentation that over the last two years Briscoe stores had suffered seven ram-raid attacks as well as at least 12 significant break-ins which caused substantial property damage and stock loss.

Duke added: “Of even more concern is the ever-increasing level of abuse and aggressive behaviour our store teams have had to endure. We have significantly increased our capital investment in security initiatives to ensure our team feels as safe as possible when they are working in our stores and I would like to once again thank the entire team for their continued commitment and outstanding efforts during this half.

“It is greatly appreciated and acknowledged by all the group’s directors.”

The Briscoe Group reported unaudited sales for the 26 weeks of the year of $369.2m, a 0.35% increase on the $367.9m in the previous comparable period. The group’s sporting goods segment reported an increase of 0.46%, while sales at the homewares division rose by 0.28%.

Duke said: “We are pleased with the sales we have produced. To achieve positive growth given the continued negative economic factors impacting consumer confidence and retail spending is a solid first half performance for the group. It is encouraging to see a return to physical stores with the group’s bricks and mortar revenue showing higher growth than online sales for the first half.”

He added that online sales continue to perform well and represented 18.33% of group sales during the period.

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