JOHANNESBURG, Aug 23 (Reuters) - South African retailer Woolworths reported a worse-than-expected 17.7 percent drop in annual earnings on Thursday, hit by restructuring costs at its Australian unit and poor performance in its clothing business at home.
Woolworths, which sells groceries, food and homeware, said headline earnings per share (EPS) for the year ended June declined to 346.3 cents versus a 380 cents estimate, or 9.7 percent fall, in a poll of 10 analysts by Thomson Reuters’ I/B/E/S.
Headline EPS, the most widely watched profit gauge in South Africa, strips out certain one-off items.
Sales of the Cape Town-based company rose 1.6 percent to 75.2 billion rand ($5.14 billion). ($1 = 14.6363 rand) (Reporting by Nqobile Dludla Editing by Tiisetso Motsoeneng)