KGN is a diversified electronics, homewares, office and clothing retailer that designs, sources and resells products online through its Kogan, Mighty Ape and Dick Smith platforms in Australia, New Zealand and the United States.
KGN designs and sources consumer electronics, appliances, homewares and other items that it has externally manufactured and packaged in China under its proprietary Kogan, Ovela, Fortis and Certa brands. It also sources Apple, Canon, Samsung, HTC, Swann and other branded products from domestic and international wholesalers that it resells online through its Kogan website (www.kogan.com) in Australia, New Zealand and the United States, its Dlck Smith websites (www.dicksmith.com.au and www.dicksmith.co.nz) in Australia and New Zealand, its Mighty Ape website (www.mightyape.co.nz) in New Zealand, and its eBay store (www.stores.ebay.com/kogan) in the United States. Most of its products are distributed directly to its customers from one of several leased warehouses in Australia and Asia using third-party logistics providers.
KGN also owns and operates: a retail travel website called Kogan Travel (www.kogan.com/au/travel) that facilitates the booking of hotels, cruises and holiday packages in Australia; an online mobile services retailer called Kogan Mobile (www.koganmobile.com.au) that sells prepay mobile plans in Australia; Kogan Internet (www.koganinternet.com.au) that sells broadband internet services; an insurance website called Kogan Insurance (www.koganinsurance.com.au) that sells car, home, travel, pet and life insurance that is underwritten by third parties; an online energy retailer that sells electricity and gas to Australian households under the brand Kogan Energy (www.koganenergy.com.au); and Kogan Money (www.koganmoney.com.au) that sells credit cards, home loans and superannuation products.
Online retailers generally have lower operating cost structures than their ‘bricks and mortar’ competitors and are therefore able to offer lower prices for the same or similar products. They are also less constrained by the location of their customers, but are more dependent on the efficiency of their logistics and delivery services. Companies try to maximise their operating leverage and minimise their inventory levels by selling on-trend products at competitive prices, by improving their end-to-end customer fulfilment, and by frequently upgrading their websites and reducing any payment friction. Specifically, KGN has indicated its near-term focus is to: enhance its marketing and continue to resell new and improved products with a particular emphasis on its own branded products; growing its mobile, internet and insurance offerings and expanding into new verticals and products .
KGN competes directly with other domestic and international electronics retailers, clothing retailers and other household product suppliers that are also trying to attract customers through various pricing, quality and other customer propositions. Some of its larger domestic and international competitors are Harvey Norman of Australia, Kmart of Australia, Amazon of the United States, Alibaba of China and The Warehouse of New Zealand.
KGN owns several established online retail platforms with reliable channels to market in Australia. It also has operations in different countries, giving it some ability to allocate more of its resources to countries with favourable demand drivers and exchange rates, and vice-versa. Going forward, it should continue to benefit from increased sales and economies of scale through organic growth, expanding its product range and geographic presence, optimising its operations and supply chain as well as undertaking complimentary and value-accretive acquisitions. Its downside commercial risks could include: a broader economic slowdown that could affect the propensity of customers to purchase discretionary electronic goods, homeware and clothing; continued erosion of market share and gross margins from new online retail platforms and multinational competitors who hold little inventory and generally have lower fixed operating costs; restricted growth due to a lack of financing, consumer awareness or attempting to enter multiple markets without gaining traction in any particular market; loss of a key distributor, supplier or employee; changes to the availability, quality and delivered price of wholesale products and third party supplier costs that are unhedged and cannot be passed on to customers through pricing increases; a depreciation of the AUD, which would increase the unhedged cost of its imports (equally however, this could reduce the propensity of domestic customers to source alternative products from other competing international suppliers); and any inheritance of undue liabilities or commercial risks through new product offerings, acquisitions and entrances into new markets.
2016: Kogan was founded in 2006 by Ruslan Kogan as an Australian online retailer of proprietary branded consumer electronics. After an unsuccessful attempt at entering the United Kingdom in 2010, Kogan instead began to import and resell third-party products in 2011. The following year it launched an online mobile services retailer called Kogan Mobile, which was later closed after the collapse of ispONE. Kogan began reselling and distributing products to New Zealand and the United States in 2014 and it also relaunched Kogan Mobile and an online travel website called Kogan Travel in 2015. Kogan was first listed on Australian Stock Exchange in 2016 (KGN.AX), prior to which it acquired the brand name, websites and customer database of **** Smith
2017: KGN entered into a 3-year partnership with The Holland Insurance Company to offer home, contents, landlord, car and travel insurance under a new Kogan Insurance brand
2018: KGN entered into a partnership with Medibank Group to offer health insurance under a new Kogan Health brand, a partnership with PetSure to offer pet insurance under a new Kogan Pet Insurance brand, a partnership with Greenstone Financial Services to offer life insurance and funeral insurance under a new Kogan Life Insurance brand, and a partnership with Vodafone to offer broadband internet services under a new Kogan Internet brand. KGN expanded its range of products to include own-branded whitegoods and built-in kitchen appliances
2019: KGN entered into partnerships with: Adelaide Bank and Pepper Group to offer home loan products under a new Kogan Money brand; Mercer to offer superannuation products under a new Kogan Super brand; Citigroup to offer a credit card product under the Kogan Money Credit Card brand; Exlipx Group to offer new cars from dealers across Australia under the Kogan Cars brand; and Meridian Energy to offer electricity and gas to Australian households under the brand Kogan Energy. KGN also launched: Kogan Marketplace to allow other retail businesses to sell products on its Kogan platform; and Kogan Energy Compare, an energy pricing comparison tool
2020: The global COVIDid-19 pandemic forced major nations to temporarily close their borders and restrict people’s movements causing major disruptions to supply-chains, employment and consumer demand in almost every sector. KGN was required to shut its offices and distribution centres in Australia, New Zealand and the United States. Its online fulfilment was also suspended for several weeks. Towards the end of the year, KGN acquired a small furniture retailer called Matt Blatt after it had gone into liquidation with the intention to relaunch it with online sales only, and it also undertook an equity capital raising to strengthen its balance sheet and fund future acquisitions
2021: KGN acquired Mighty Ape, a leading online retail business in New Zealand with more than 895,000 subscribers
KGN was first listed on the Australian Stock Exchange on 07 July 2016. It had 93.3 million shares on issue at the end of the 2018 financial year, 37% of which were owned by Kogan Management, 5% each by Challenger and Greenscape and the rest by a mix of approximately 8,200 retail and institutional investors.
The KGN Board collectively owned 41.1 million shares at the end of last year. The Board currently comprises:
- Greg Ridder has been the Independent Chairman since May 2016. Greg comes from an accounting background and was previously the Asia Pacific Regional President of Owens-Illinois. He also serves on the boards of a number of private companies;
- Ruslan Kogan has been a Non-Independent Director and the Chief Executive Officer since founding the business in 2006;
- David Shafer has been a Non-Independent Director since November 2010. David is also the Chief Financial Officer of KGN;
- Harry Debney has been an Independent Director since May 2016. Harry is currently also a Director and the Chief Executive Officer of Costa Group; and
- Michael Hirschowitz has been an Independent Director since March 2019.
Ruslan Kogan has been the KGN Chief Executive Officer and a Non-Independent Director since founding the business in 2006. Ruslan comes from a business background having previously founded an online furniture retailer called Milan Direct.