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What’s happening at DSGi?

by Scott Bicheno on 13 January 2009, 13:51

Tags: PC World (LON:DXNS), DSG International (LON:DXNS)

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What in the world?

The good old days must seem pretty far away for DSGi - the dominant force in technology retailing in the UK - as increased competition and its own flawed business model continue to take their toll.

2008 marked the worst year yet for the owner of PC World, Currys and Dixons, as a succession of bad news stories made clear its plight. In the first half of the year, new CEO John Browett announced a halving of the shareholder dividend as the extent of the task ahead of it became apparent. His remedy took the form of the Renewal and Transformation Plan (PDF).

DSGi later announced a 30 percent drop in profits in June and a £30 million loss in November. This was soon followed by the news of a number of executive reassessments.  

Then yesterday, in the week it announces its next lot of quarterly trading figures, the websites of PC World, Currys and Dixons were all down for around 24 hours, presumably costing the company a lot of trade.

Just before Christmas 2007 DSGi's shares were trading at over 100p. Today they're worth more like 20p, a figure that must be viewed in the context of them dropping to below 10p at the start of December 2008.

With the recession apparently hurting non-food retail the most, it's easy to paint a picture of a company in terminal decline, but we decided to speak to Mark Webb, head of media relations at DSGi, to hear the other side of the story.