Australian homewares specialist HOUSE, which is owned by Global Retail Brands, is preparing to launch in the UK market. The retailer, which is being advised by MMX Retail, aims to open its first tranche of stores by April 2018, with a total of 75 stores set to open within three years.
Global Retail Brands has 170 stores in its native Australia and describes itself as a kitchen, cooking, dining and entertaining specialist. It typically carries up to 4,000 items in its HOUSE stores, including cookware, glassware, small electrical appliances, knives and crockery.
Steven Lew, executive chairman at Global Retail Brands, said: “Over the last couple of years we’ve looked at Opportunity markets, both nationally and internationally, and the UK seemed like a very good fit for us. Our overall aim is to inspire customers to cook & create with confidence, and enjoy entertaining at home. At HOUSE, we always insist on Silver Service and customer interaction forming a key part of our proposition.
“We want HOUSE to become a household name in the UK as the go-to for cooking and entertaining. We believe that 75 stores is a safe number to target, however, this will very much be opportunity-led. We also want to create a sustainable product; for example, we are not focusing on putting a showcase on Oxford Street as we want the first store to be the same as the 75th store. If compelling opportunities present themselves, we will have the opportunity to open even more stores!”
HOUSE is looking at stores in both shopping centres and retail parks across the country, targeting unit sizes of approximately 3,500sq ft. In the last 18 months, it’s executive directors visited almost 100 potential locations up and down the country.
Nick Symons, partner at MMX Retail, added: “We are delighted to have been instructed by another new international entrant to the UK market. The HOUSE team has evidently spent considerable time and effort in evaluating the UK opportunity and we are excited about advising them on a nationwide roll out over the coming years. We have already received excellent feedback from the meetings we have had with major landlords across the UK who we have introduced to the HOUSE concept.
“Global Retail Brands’ strong trading history over the last 40 years, combined with its customer service levels and product delivery, has shown that HOUSE will create a new, strong draw to a wide range of retail venues across the UK over the coming years.”
HOUSE’s arrival will make it the latest in a string of Australian retailers to land in the UK. Children’s stationery operator Smiggle, also advised by MMX Retail, opened its 100th store earlier this year, while the likes of Bunnings, Typo, Honey Birdette, Kikki.K and Lovisa have all launched in the UK over the past three years.