MAKRO Cash & Carry Distribution (M) Sdn Bhd is targeting 10% growth in sales this financial year after achieving RM706mil sales last year, said its managing director Anton Van Gorp.
Its back-to-basic repositioning effort as a cash-and-carry wholesaler was showing results with the company breaking even last year, after registering a net loss of RM19mil in 2001, he said.
The company has been profitable since last July and now looks forward to sustaining its performance in the coming years, Van Gorp told a media briefing in Shah Alam yesterday.
For the financial year ended Dec 31, 2002, Makro Malaysia's sales increased by RM66mil from the previous year. In January this year alone, Makro has chalked up sales of RM85mil.
This is a record for us in any single month and we are certainly looking forward to build on it.
According to Van Gorp, Makro is committed to carry out the repositioning exercise to increase sales, cut down operations cost, thus offering better prices for customers, without compromising on the quality of goods offered.
He said Makro was now gradually changing its hypermarket image to be the leading wholesaler for the small businesses, with customers like small retailers, caterers (small restaurants and canteens) and professionals in the service sector.
We believe that the local wholesale market has great growth potential and Makro plans to tap into this burgeoning market by strengthening our repositioning effort, which is slated for completion the next four to five years, he added.
Founded in 1993, the first Makro Cash & Carry outlet opened in Shah Alam. To date, there are eight Makro stores nationwide in Selayang, Johor Baru, Ipoh, Seberang Prai, Seremban, Cheras and Penang.
Van Gorp said: The company will continue to look for expansion opportunities in non-traditional markets like Kedah, Kelantan and Pahang within the next two years but the immediate focus is to reposition the company and strengthen its customer base.
In repositioning, Makro is also focusing on cost-cutting measures, particularly on its electricity bills.