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Woolworths shares rise

JOHANNESBURG — South African retailer Woolworths Holdings Ltd reported a 2,1% drop in annual earnings on Thursday but cheered investors with a turnaround in its Fashion, Beauty and Home business that had weighed on sales.

Group chief executive Ian Moir has admitted previously to mistakes in its local fashion business, where poor product choices in clothing, especially in womenswear, hurt sales in the previous year.

The firm has since focused on what it describes as “beautiful basic” items that better target its customer base.

Sales in the Woolworths Fashion, Beauty and Home business rose by 1,5% and comparable sales by 1% in the 52 weeks ended June, reversing a
1,5% fall the previous year.

“The second-half is really worth calling out within Fashion, Beauty and Home. We got it back to where it should be, we’ve refocused the
business and made the changes we talked about,” Moir said during the company’s results presentation. —Reuters

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