Myer is shutting regional stores to focus on its big city 'flagships'

Jennifer

Myer is closing stores at Wollongong and Orange in New South Wales with combined staff of about 130.

CEO Richard Umbers says the closures decision are a necessary step in the delivery of the new strategy to return Myer to profitable growth.

“While decisions to close stores are never easy, the process of reshaping our store network to better align with our primary customers is an essential part of the strategy,” he says.

Myer is concentrating more on its flagship stores in city centres.

The Wollongong store will close in October this year and the Orange store in January 2017, as leases expire.

“We are committed to supporting all impacted team members, and we will work with them through this process,” says Umbers.

Myer’s new strategy includes $480 million in capital investment and a target of greater than 3% improvement a year in sales between next year and 2020. The current financial year is a transitional one, carrying costs of the strategy.

“Our New Myer strategy is designed to deliver a sharper and more focused offer, and improve productivity across the entire business,” Umbers said today.

The latest sales show a marked improvement with the retailer posted a 2.1% rise in the third quarter to $675.5 million.

However, Myer is running behind its main competitor David Jones, now owned by South African company Woolworths Holdings. Expansion of private label brands helped David Jones increase sales by 11.2% for the half year to December.

Myer shares are steady today at $1.192, up just 0.17%.

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