David Jones to open second New Zealand store in Auckland
The under-pressure Australian department stores operator first set foot in New Zealand two years ago with a Wellington store. But it has been heavily distracted by problems in its core Australian market since then with falling sales and a massive A$712 million writedown of its value on the back of tough times for the business.
And the company’s previous instance that it had no plans to open an additional New Zealand store meant that speculation about the chances of a second location has ebbed and flowed in recent periods.
But a statement from CEO David Thomas proved that its earlier denials were far from accurate. He said: "We've been assessing the opportunity in Auckland since opening the store in Wellington. We're very committed to investing in our stores. We've done that in Wellington, and are certainly looking to do the same in Newmarket.”
But the opening of the new store in late 2019, which should create around 150 jobs, will most likely come after the firm sets up a New Zealand-specific website. This would further underline its commitment to the market as it seeks a return to growth in a region where international competition and cautious consumers have hurt its business of late.
Thomas also said that David Jones has no plans for a third New Zealand store at the moment, but based on past statements, the company would be unlikely to admit to it even if it did.
Signing David Jones for the Newmarket development is a major coup with a boost to its fashion and lifestyle offer, in which David Jones is a key regional player, being a major part of the investment.
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