Feeds

Carphone Warehouse considers retailing future

Big yellow boxes slipping into the red

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Despite good results from its US expansion, and turning a French loss into a profit, annual figures from Carphone Warehouse show its ambitious plan to change European retailing is consuming a good deal more cash than anticipated.

Losses from joint operation Best Buy UK topped £62m in the last 12 months, more than three times that of the previous year – and £12m more than the company had predicted.

It's a good thing then that Carphone Warehouse Europe turned in a profit of £134.6m (up 18 per cent), and that the group also managed to double its profits from America, with Best Buy Mobile bringing in £97.9m in profit.

Revenues at Best Buy Europe were £3.57bn, up just 1.2 per cent on the year, producing EBITDA of £257.4m, compared to £231.7 last year.

Best Buy Europe, the joint deal to bring the US retailer's big yellow stores across the pond, spent more than £62m in the last 12 months – rather more than the £50m or so the company had predicted. But Carphone Warehouse offset that loss with huge gains in the US, where Best Buy Mobile (taking UK mobile phone sales techniques to the USA) has managed to grab 5 per cent of the US market (seven million subscribers).

Virgin Mobile France – of which Carphone Warehouse owns almost half – also had a good year, turning last year's loss of more than £20m into a similarly-sized profit. That's apparently down to "creative marketing", which increased the customer base by 200,000 or so.

Things aren't so rosy in the UK, where the company expects to shed as much as 5 per cent of its mobile customers over the next year thanks to longer contracts (24 rather than 18 months) and its lack of prepay portfolio. UK contracts are doing OK though, with 90 per cent of new contractees taking up smartphones.

The company remains adamant that as tablets erode laptop and notebook computers, its stores will gain – users like to see and touch rather than basing their decision on a web-hosted photograph. But despite this upbeat prediction, Carphone Warehouse admits it is "in the process of evaluating the next steps in our multi-format/multi-channel consumer electronics strategy". ®

Business security measures using SSL

More from The Register

next story
Brit telcos warn Scots that voting Yes could lead to HEFTY bills
BT and Co: Independence vote likely to mean 'increased costs'
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Blockbuster book lays out the first 20 years of the Smartphone Wars
Symbian's David Wood bares all. Not for the faint hearted
Bonking with Apple has POUNDED mobe operators' wallets
... into submission. Weve squeals, ditches payment plans
This flashlight app requires: Your contacts list, identity, access to your camera...
Who us, dodgy? Vast majority of mobile apps fail privacy test
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.