Costco paves way for continuing Australian expansion

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 5th February 2013

Costco Wholesale Australia’s recently reported figures to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) show that the US-owned supermarket and discount retailer is now turning a decent profit in Australia.

The figures, obtained by Australian Food News from ASIC today, show that Costco earned a net profit of $9.73 million up to September 2012. Its report lodged at ASIC showed that its stores generated $610 million in sales and membership purchases. The Costco profit makes a turnaround from $38 million losses incurred since 2009 in the set-up phase of establishing three large-scale warehouse stores in Australia.

The warehouse wholesaler has since received $50 million from the United States parent group to continue Australian expansion.

Costco started in Australia four years ago and currently operates three stores in Melbourne, Sydney and Canberra and runs  a club membership program for all its shoppers to join. The business sells discounted supermarket grocery lines as well as discounted  furniture, alcohol and electrical appliances – and many unique specials such as items of jewellery or other special one-off offerings.

The $50 million will boost the construction of another three warehouse stores awaiting planning approval in North Lakes, Queensland, or currently in construction in Ringwood (Victoria) and Crossroads (New South Wales.)

Last week Australian Food News reported successful financial results for both Woolworths Limited and Wesfarmers during the second quarter of the 2013 financial year. Wesfarmers-owned Coles sales were at $9.8 billion for the quarter, up 5.2 per cent from the previous year. Woolworths Limited‘s food and liquor division reported sales of $10.35 billion for the quarter.

Costco in the United States

Latest Costco figures obtained today by Australian Food News from NASDAQ  reports show that the entire Costco group’s global revenue grew by 11.5 per cent last fiscal year to US $99.14 billion. Costco’s net profit rose by 16.9 per cent to US $1.71 billion.

The Costco group has a current market capitalisation of US $45.37 billion, and in the last financial period showed a gross margin of 12.45 per cent and a net profit margin of 1.8 per cent.

Costco Wholesale is continuing its Australian expansion.