Retail Solutions Briefs: Harvey Norman, TDK, m-commerce

HN's PC sales slow

Harvey Norman's share price took a beating last week after the retailer announced lower than expected fourth quarter results.

Sales from the franchised stores, excluding Singapore, totalled $2.5 billion for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2001. Harvey Norman was quick to point out that this represented a 10.4 per cent increase on the previous year.

However, like-for-like sales increased a mere 2.7 per cent compared to the year ended 30 June 2000.

In a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange, director John Skippen admitted computer hardware sales had been soft. "From November 2000, computer hardware sales softened and continued to be soft for the balance of the financial year," he said.

TDK plays games

TDK has moved into games software, announcing a new brand, TDKids. The division has released a new Gameboy colour game to coincide with the release of animated film Shrek. The game heads a new range of products to be released by TDKids over the coming months. Shrek is a computer-animated comedy about an ogre and features the voices of Mike Myers, Cameron Diaz, Eddie Murphy and John Lithgow. The game will retail for $59.95.m-commerce hits snagWith a growing number of mobile carriers in the US trying to bail out of mandated accuracy requirements, retailers planning to use mobile-phone-based location services to steer customers into their shops may have to resort to other marketing efforts. The carriers want to offer less precise location services instead that wouldn't be of much help for mobile commerce.

The US Federal Communications Commission set October 1 as the deadline for carriers to start providing information to locate the source of emergency calls. But the requirements are meeting resistance from various carriers that claim they can't reach that level of accuracy, or at least need more time to do so.