By James Wells
ALICE SPRINGS: After five generations and over 70 years of servicing the people of Alice Springs, Murray Neck Home World has joined the Harvey Norman group after less than a year with the Narta buying group.
Murray Neck Electric World, a subsidiary of the larger Murray Neck Home World, joined the Narta group in September last year after 12 years as a member of the Betta Electrical group – Betta Stores, and 28 years as a member of Retravision.
Although the brand represents their father’s interest in the business, the electrical and furniture subsidiaries have been managed more recently by sons Greg Neck and Chris Neck.
Greg Neck will remain with the new Harvey Norman business as franchisee for electrical.
In May 2002, Murray Neck stepped down as chairman when the Northern Territory chief minister, Clare Martin, opened the $5 million Murray Neck Home World.
The 5,700 square metre superstore concept was regarded as a bold investment at the time, with five showrooms selling electrical, bedding, floor coverings and furniture by incorporating Betta Electrical, Forty Winks, Homemakers and Carpet Choice as well as a retail finance department – Murray Neck Rentals.
The business was designed to attract a wide demographic from the surrounding population of 26,000 and stem the leakage of shoppers to neighbouring states.
The original business was founded in 1932 as an ice works and cordial factory and in 1936 introduced the wireless to Central Australia. Greg Neck joined the business in 1972.
Even though Murray Neck Electrical World was only a member of the Narta group since September last year, the buying group’s managing director, Kay Spencer, told Current.com.au that the business will be missed.
“From an industry perspective, Narta members have known Greg Neck and family and respected their business for a long time,” Spencer said.
“They were very professional people and we are sad to lose them as a Narta member. We definitely understand the advantage of having an exit strategy for the family and we wish them well.”