Pick n Pay’s interim results to end-August left me with mixed emotions. After many years of minuscule sales growth as the group was streamlined by previous CEO Richard Brasher, Pick n Pay produced decent sales growth for the first time in ages. And yet the market slapped the share price down in response.

I listened to many reasons and excuses for the share price weakness (as much as 9% down in a day) but none of them were convincing, either wholly or partly. It appears to be due to a typical poor market environment, where even good results get trashed. Pick n Pay has turned the corner and is on the road to recouping lost profitable market share. But it will be a long, arduous journey and new CEO Pieter Boone is under no illusions...

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