LUXURY retailer SSI Group Inc., the listed retailing arm of the Tantoco-led Rustan’s Group, recorded a 63-percent surge in net income for 2014, driven by an aggressive store expansion coupled with a strong retail brand portfolio and sustained profit margins.
In a statement, the company said net income rose to P998.7 million from P613.7 million in 2013, while revenue increased 19 percent to P15.2 billion.
“2014 was a landmark year for SSI,” said Anton T. Huang, SSI Group president.
“We continue to leverage on a brand portfolio that resonates with consumers, on the availability of prime retail space, and on evolving consumption patterns and consumer tastes. We expect that these factors will continue to drive our performance in 2015,” Huang said in a statement.
SSI Group added 35,500 square meters (sq m) or a 36-percent growth in retail space, ending with a total network of 126 stores by end-2014.
Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) climbed 88 percent to P2.9 billion.
In terms of brand portfolio, the company ended 2014 with 106 brands, operating 723 specialty stores equivalent to 134,000 sq m of retail space, as well as 90 FamilyMart convenience stores.
Huang said recently their FamilyMart stores had 100 outlets as of end-February and they are now planning to expand that to up to 160 outlets nationwide before the end of the year, both company-owned and franchised.
To date, FamilyMart is the third largest convenience store player in the country, after Philippine Seven Corp.’s 7-Eleven and the Ministop chain of Gokongwei Group’s Robinsons Retail Holdings and Mitsubishi Corp.
SSI Group is targeting to dislodge Ministop from its rank and become the second biggest convenience store player in the Philippines
The company’s two-year expansion plan involves the addition of 21,000 sq m of retail space or 130 new stores this year, as well as another 16,000 sq m of commercial retail area next year.
Established in 1987, SSI first operated the Rustan’s Group’s specialty retail brands. Its retail portfolio includes Lacoste, Salvatore Ferragamo and Marks and Spencer as well as Ralph Lauren, DKNY, Kenneth Cole, Burberry and Banana Republic, among others.
It later expanded into the convenience and department stores landscape through joint ventures with Ayala Land Inc. and Japan’s FamilyMart Co. Ltd. and Itochu Corp. to bring in the FamilyMart and Wellworth chains into the country.