Publisher of leading trade magazines for the Footwear, Leather-goods, Leather & PPE industries

S&V Weekly Newsletter Vol.5 No.8, Feb 25, 2019

This Newsletter is sponsored by SAFLIA


Please note: Click on any ad to go to the advertiser’s website


Retail last week

On Saturday, comment from 5 retailers
"Business has been unbelievably good at our Gardens store, and it has been since we closed our Sea Point store in February last year after the landlord put up the rental by 60%. Since then, both sets of customers have been supporting the Gardens store. The other store, in Wynberg, has been going for 98 years, and business there is very stable." - Rohit Kooverjee, member, Babu's Footwear Store, Cape Town, W Cape. Comfort footwear specialist, 2 stores. "Very quiet." - MA Goga, proprietor, Babyland, Ladysmith, KZN. Baby products specialist, including a small range of infants' footwear, 1 store.

"This week was OK, but it's been a topsy-turvy month. Load shedding had a big effect." - Suresh Parekh, member, Bachelors Classic, Durban, KZN. Men's outfitter, 2 stores.

"It's been up and down. Up to the 15th, it was very quiet. Since then, it's been picking up." - Saijel Mitha, Bad Street Boyz, Port Elizabeth, E Cape. Men's outfitter, 4 stores.

"February has been quiet. Quieter than February last year." - MA Cachalia, member, Bank Store, Mokopane/Potgietersrus, Limpopo. Outdoor wear specialist, 1 store.



Financial results

Truworths International

Cape Town, W Cape, SA (Feb 21, 2019) – Truworths International reported a 2% growth in retail sales for the 26 weeks ended December 30, blaming tough trading conditions in its 2 principal markets, SA and the UK.
       Retail sales for Office, its European entity, decreased by 3%, and increased by 2% for Truworths, its SA and other African states entity, which incorporates Identity, Uzzi, Loads of Living, Eathchild, Earthaddict, Naartjie, Office London (the SA stores), and Kids Emporium.
       It summarised its financial performance as:

  Dec 2018 Dec 2017 Change on prior period %
Retail sales (Rm) 10 491 10 289 2
Gross margin (%) 52.3 52.4  
Trading profit (Rm) 1 643 1 703 (4)
Trading margin (%) 16.1 16.9  

       The acquisition of Office, the cash-only, UK-based footwear retailer, has increased the group's exposure to footwear and cash sales substantially. Footwear now contributes 35% of the group's product mix (against 10% in Africa), and cash sales contribute 49% for the group, against 30% in Africa.
       SA made up 71% of group retail sales, with the rest of Africa contributing 2%, and the UK and Europe contributing 27%.
       E-commerce contributed 9% of group retail sales. It grew 7% in Europe, to 33% of sales. In SA, where it was launched in February last year, it is "generating the turnover of a medium-sized Truworths store". For the full report, click here



Woolworths Holdings Ltd

Cape Town, W Cape, SA (Feb 21, 2019) – Woolworths Holdings reported a 1.9% growth in turnover and concession sales to R39.4 billion for the 26 weeks ended December 23. It said trading conditions were unlikely to improve in the short-term in either South Africa, where the consumer remains under considerable pressure from a weak economy, and in Australia, where consumer sentiment remains constrained.
       Sales for Woolworths Fashion, Beauty & Home "declined by 2.0% (comparable stores were 2.4% lower),impacted by a significantly smaller winter clearance sale in the first quarter. Sales in the second quarter of the year have, however, shown positive growth. Price movement was 1.7% for FBH, (and 0.8% for Fashion)... Store costs grew by 4.3% and other operating costs were 3.3% up on the prior period. Despite the gross margin improvement and good cost control, the lower trading activity led to operating profit declining by 11.8% to R915 million."
       Woolworths Food sales increased by 6.3% and comparable stores by 4.2%
       Its David Jones division in Australia saw sales increase by 1% but its operating profit drop by 28.8% to A$47m. Its Country Road Group division in Australia saw sales increase by 2.3% and its operating profit grow by 3.4% to A$61m. For the full report, click here




Pinetown, KZN, SA – Former Bata SA Toughees brand manager Khutjo Madisha, who left to start a consulting company, has returned to the company as brand manager for the Power Footwear, Weinbrenner and North Star brands.

Johannesburg, Gauteng, SA – A&D Spitz senior men's footwear buyer Kevin Toba left at the end of January. No replacement has yet been announced. He has reportedly left the industry.



Elan Polo to sell Springbok, Pirates shoes

Cape Town, W Cape, SA – Elan Polo SA (Pty) Ltd has acquired the licenses for both the Springboks and Orlando Pirates street and fashion footwear ranges, MD Stuart Worrall has reported. A fuller description will appear in the S&V Footwear & Leather Goods Magazine our later this week. - +27 (0)21 531 6443,


Who makes skips?

Naked Feet member Allan Beckley enquired if we knew who makes or sells shoe skips. We don't know either. Please contact Allan at, or 082 440 5460, or let us know.



Competition Commission on school uniforms

Pretoria, Gauteng, SA – The Competition Commission will tomorrow host a press conference at the DTI campus on "measures aimed at addressing and supporting [the prevention of] anti-competitive conduct in the school uniform industry'. This covers all items of apparel for schools.


A simple way to get tax relief

Ever wonder how YOU could benefit by benefitting others? Aside from the natural good feeling that comes from generosity, donating to the National Council of SPCAs (NSPCA) offers other rewards such as tax relief for companies and individuals, and B-BBEE points for companies.
       The NSPCA is a certified B-BBEE Level 2 contributor with a 125% procurement recognition and all donations are tax deductible. With financial year end and tax season fast approaching – making your money work for you has never been easier. By making a donation to the NSPCA, you not only help us to help animals, but you help yourself too.
       The NSPCA operates on a national basis with a team of dedicated inspectors, who work tirelessly to protect and uplift the welfare of all animals, ranging from the tiny lizard to the majestic elephant, every animal is important to the NSPCA.
       In the last financial year, the NSPCA travelled in excess of 1 000 000 kilometres, undertaking inspections, investigations, attending court cases, changing industries, and training various other organisations such as magistrates, prosecutors, police officers, and animal health technicians.
       29 successful prosecutions were achieved in the last year, and a total of 127 days were spent in court by NSPCA inspectors and their veterinarian, that translates to 6 months spent in court by various personnel. There are 76 court cases that are still pending, not to mention the cases that will be opened in the next financial year.
         The NSPCA desperately needs financial assistance to continue their crucial work. For more information with regards to donating towards the good work done by the NSPCA, please visit their website by clicking on the following link:- 
       By assisting an organisation like the NSPCA, you are making a huge impact and benevolent shift for all South Africans, making South Africa a better place to live and conduct your business, not to mention the tax and B-BBEE benefits and the general happiness that being generous provides – it makes sense to donate. Help animals. Help South Africa. Help yourself. You work hard for your money, isn’t it time that your money works hard for you?



They Said It

"Unfortunately I can't take the credit for it... it was our ginger ninja that did the magic." - Rolfes Leather MD Quintin Marais on some text that came our way. The 'Ginger Ninja' is Samantha Watt from Rolfes' PR company. She does make 'his' announcements sound good though, and I suggested it sounded so polished he would soon be wearing a collar and tie. He responded: "Already doing it."


S&V Directory - Order now

The directory is nearing completion. Copies are available at the pre-publication price of R250. The online version is available at R450 for 12 months' access.


2019 Trade Fairs Another essential service from S&V

Please note that we have put a list of the 2019 trade fairs and conferences on our website, linked to their websites:


Exchange rates


  Euro € GBP £ US $ Yuan Renminbi ¥
05/01/2019 R15.94 R17.79 R13.99 R2.03
12/01/2019 R15.86 R17.76 R13.83 R2.04
19/01/2019 R15.76 R17.85 R13.87 R2.04
26/01/2019 R15.52 R17.97 R13.60 R2.01
02/02/2019 R15.26 R17.42 R13.32 R1.97
09/02/2019 R15.46 R17.66 R13.65 R2.02
16/02/2019 R15.90 R18.15 R14.09 R2.08
23/02/2019 R15.90 R18.32 R14.04 R2.09
Note: For previous rates, see HERE




ABSA Agri Trends 19/02: Hides & skins prices

Hide prices drop 31.8%
Bovine: The average hide price over the past week was R2.01/kg green. NB* Hide prices are determined by the average of the RMAA (Red Meat Abattoir Association) and independent companies.

Hide & skin price progression
Date Hides/Kg Dorper/Skin Merino Skin
18/01 3.94 33.75 81.67
25/01 2.89 31.11 92.78
01/02 2.83 30.63 87.50
05/02 2.53    
13/02 2.95    
15/02 2.95 25.83 62.01
For previous prices, see HERE


26/02/1946: Brian Carmichael, MTL Trading, Cape Town.
26/02/1959: Prakash Chiba, Falcarragy Trading, Durban.
26/02/1961: Keith Lyons, Strayz, Pinetown.
26/02/1981: Ndlela Mazibuko, BBF Safety Group, Pinetown.
27/02/1975: Denver Mahabeer, Edgars, Johannesburg.
28/02/1945: Basil da Silva, Mendelson & Frost, Cape Town.
28/02/1969: Dilesh Dajee, agent, Johannesburg.
02/03/1945: Sakkie van der Vyver, retired, formerly Adidas, Cape Town.
02/03/1953: Garth Ewing, retired, formerly Garth Ewing Agencies, East London.


In Memoriam this week

27/02/2010: Jean Mee ‘Mick’ Lailvaux (b. 22/02/1919), Service Agencies (closed), Durban.
27/02/2010: Amanda ‘Mandy’ Terry (b. 20/02/1969), Makro, Johannesburg.
28/02/2016: Johnny Parboo (b. 21/10/1945), Labora Shoes, Durban.
01/03/2004: Sandra Faye Campbell (b. 09/06/1971), Dunn’s Stores, Johannesburg.
02/03/1991: Edward Powell (b. 12/02/1967), agent, Johannesburg.
03/03/2003: Gerry Elder (b. 03/08/1928), agent, Cape Town.
03/03/2010: Ernest Alfred ‘Basie’ Heunis (b. 17/05/1923), Silverton Tannery [closed], Pretoria.

Have you let us know about your birthday, or the birthdays of your colleagues? Our readers love this section, so please become part of it. This also applies to the In Memoriam section. Help us remember former colleagues.


Send us the links

We invite businesses to send us links to websites, Facebook pages and the like which they feel would be of interest to others. The links below are from our database:

American Man Sportswear, technical sports, 1 store and online, Johannesburg, Gauteng:
American Menswear/Streetgear, branded sports fashion, 18 stores and online, Durban, KZN:


Classified Adverts


Looking for employment?

The SA Footwear & Leather Export Council has a position available at our offices in Westville for a junior Girl Friday/PA to the Executive Director. Candidate must be a team player. Please send your CV to

We’re hiring!

Sales Position Available at DOT Safety Footwear.

Fantastic environment. New exciting opportunities.

Sales Experience essential. Safety Footwear industry experience advantageous.
Email C.V to


Seeking a Vibrant & Creative Shoe Designer

Budding Shoe Manufacturing Company seeks a vibrant and creative shoe designer to help move our company forward. We are looking for someone with leadership qualities as well as a creative side as they will constantly be designing new styles of shoes.
Must have experience in grading and design of ladies' and men's shoes. Experience in designing of boots would be a bonus.
We are based in Benrose, Johannesburg. Please contact Aarifah on 061 046 4180 to set up an interview. Salary and contract terms will be discussed then.

Agencies Required

Experienced agency with many years' experience looking for Men’s, Ladies' and Children’s agencies for Gauteng. We have good connections with Chain and Independent stores.

Please contact

Phone   082 497 0854


Contact us

News & Classifieds: Tony Dickson, +27 (0)31 209 7505,

Next newsletter: March 4, 2019.

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