Woolworths puts Dick Smith up for sale

Summary:Woolworths Limited today announced that it is looking to rid itself of Dick Smith Electronics in order to focus on its core business.

Woolworths Limited today announced that it is looking to rid itself of Dick Smith Electronics in order to focus on its core business.

"Woolworths ... will accelerate the restructure of its specialty consumer-electronics brand, Dick Smith, with a view to divesting the business in a staged and considered process," Woolworths said today, after wrapping up a three-month strategic review into the Dick Smith business.

"The future of the Dick Smith business ... could be realised through new ownership," the retail giant added.

Woolworths will instead focus on its high-volume businesses, namely Big W and Woolworths, for the future of the consumer-electronics segment, while expanding the company's multi-channel offering through several online properties and a daily-deals site.

Door Buster — Woolworths' first daily-deals offering — had a troubled launch this month after traffic issues saw the site strain to keep up with demand.

Woolworths said that it has already received several unsolicited offers for the Dick Smith business, and would follow these up with the assistance of firm Greenhill Caliburn.

While the company explores offers for Dick Smith Electronics, it will continue to embark on resolutions drawn from its strategic business review, which includes closing 100 underperforming stores over the next two years, and redeploying staff.

The Australian reported this week that the move to close off flagging areas of the Dick Smith business would be supported by the company's institutional investors.

Woolworths' CEO Grant O'Brien offered his assurances about the continuity of the business, saying that it will continue to operate as normal for all Dick Smith staff, suppliers and customers.

Woolworths Limited today announced first-half year sales of $29.7 billion, a 5 per cent increase on the previous year.

Topics: Laptops, E-Commerce, Legal, Mobility


A fresh recruit onto the tech journalism battlefield, Luke Hopewell is eager to see some action. After a tour of duty in the belly of the Telstra beast, he is keen to report big stories on the enterprise beat. Drawing on past experience in radio, print and magazine, he plans to ask all the tough questions you want answered.

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