When Stuart Bird took over as CEO eight years ago, the Mr Price Group's share price had gained over 41% in the preceding year. But since the share price hit a record high in April last year it has shed about 24%. Bird now has the arduous task of turning the business around. Mr Price released a set of dismal results this week — reporting the group's first earnings decrease in 16 years. For the year ended April 1, diluted headline earnings per share fell 10.4% from the previous year, to 887.9c. With retail sales in comparable stores dropping 3.6.% to R18.6-billion, total revenue did not even register a 1% increase, coming in just 0.7% higher at R19.8-billion.The retailer has had to deal with increased competition from international retailers and a difficult operating environment. Speaking at the group's results presentation in Durban this week, Bird said: "We do think that we are past the worst of it. "We see the environment has continued to be constrained and in this kind of environm...

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