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Profit nearly triples for women's retailer

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AAP

2013-01-25

Womenswear retailer Specialty Fashion Group expects its first-half profit to nearly triple due to cost savings and improved sales.

The owner of the Katies and Millers fashion stores expects its net profit for the six months to December 31 to be in the range of $17 million to $18 million, it said on Friday.

That would be a significant increase from its $6.2 million profit posted in the corresponding period last year.

"Our continued focus on our strategies to improve sales, margins and costs of doing business has meant we have delivered a significant turnaround in trading performance," chief executive Gary Perlstein said in a statement.

"The economic uncertainties and structural changes affecting retail have not gone away, but we have pulled all the levers within our control to achieve sustainable improvements and our results reflect this."

Sales in the group's 892 stores in the six months to December were up two per cent on the previous corresponding period, and revenue of $311.2 million was up 1.3 per cent from the same period last year.

A major contributor to the profit growth was changes made in the company's supply chain, which delivered reduced product cost prices and freight costs, Mr Perlstein said.

Falling cotton prices had also reduced the cost of fabrics, he said.

Specialty Fashion Group is due to release its finalised first-half financial results on February 18.