The Terang and District Co-operative Limited has resisted tough economic conditions to record a solid profit and record sales during 2015-16.
The Co-op’s revenue went beyond $23 million for the first time and the before tax profit amounted to $137,224, down on last year’s record $303,297 but a solid increase on 2013-14.
The Co-op’s connection to the community continued to grow with 132 new members bringing the total to 2394. Membership growth was strong in Camperdown where the Co-op now operates a hardware store.
More than $335,000 was distributed to the community in the form of member rewards, discounts for seniors, hostels, hospitals and staff, and sponsorships and donations to local sporting clubs and community organisations.
Manager Charlie Duynhoven said profitability was down due to stock write-downs and subdued demand for dairy services.
“It has been a tough year and we expect that will continue, but our overall business is strong and members can be confident about the long-term future,” Mr Duynhoven said.
He said the Co-op had reviewed its hardware and dairy services businesses in the wake of the dairy industry’s turbulent times. “We know these services are critical for our farmer members and we’re in it for the long-term,” he said. “We’re confident things will turn around and have strengthened operations which will lead to further improvements over the coming years.”
Mr Duynhoven added that the Co-op was continuing to provide improved services for members and customers, including a new online supermarket shopping system starting on July 1.
“People are busy and want convenience so we’re providing the most convenient and modern shopping experience for customers while still maintaining all our in-store service,” Mr Duynhoven said. Online shopping can be accessed at www.terangcoop.com.au and is available in mobile apps.
The Supa IGA supermarket continues to account for more than 50 per cent of the Co-op’s revenue with $11.9 million, and nearly 75 per cent of customer visits with 350,514.
“The sales confirm what a strong business this is and how valuable it is in attracting so many customers to the town,” Mr Duynhoven said.
Total revenue across all businesses was $23,353,639, more than $500,000 ahead of 2015 for the financial year ending February 28.
Chairman Nigel Bruckner said the Board was proud of the Co-op’s commitment to the local community.
“We are made up of members of the local community and our members remain at the centre of our thinking,” Mr Bruckner said.
The Co-op Board has approved a 2015-16 bonus points allocation to members of 10 per cent of their shareholdings.
The Co-op’s total assets amount to nearly $12 million.