Wesfarmers forced to close Kmart NZ stores

Wesfarmers has announced that its 25 Kmart New Zealand stores are now closed and the 53 Bunnings locations in New Zealand are closed to the general public and only open to trade customers.

This announcement responds to measures implemented by the New Zealand government to restrict the operation of ‘non-essential’ services from midnight 25 March 2020 for a period of four weeks.

New Zealand operations represent circa 8% of the Wesfarmers group total annual revenue and Kmart New Zealand represents less than 3% of that revenue.

In a statement to the ASX, Wesfarmers said it recognises the impact these changes will have on team members, suppliers and customers that rely on its businesses for their livelihood and wellbeing.

“Wesfarmers and its divisions will endeavour to support team members through this difficult time and work with the relevant authorities on strategies to reduce the risks of Covid-19 and recommence operations as soon as deemed appropriate,” the statement read.

At this stage, state and federal government measures in Australia do not require the closure of retail stores with Bunnings, Kmart, Target and Officeworks operating under standard or near-standard trading hours.

JB Hi-Fi and Harvey Norman New Zealand close temporarily too

JB Hi-Fi released a statement today to confirm that its 14 New Zealand stores, online and commercial operations are closed for a minimum four-week period, following the introduction of alert level 4 restrictions by the government. The JB Hi-Fi New Zealand business does not make a material financial contribution to the group with FY19 sales of NZD $236 million, representing circa 3% of the group’s total annual sales.

“The group is working to support New Zealand team members and customers through this difficult time. The health and wellbeing of our team members, customers, business partners and wider community remains the group’s highest priority,” the statement read.

Harvey Norman New Zealand has closed its 41 store locations, but customers are still able to shop online, although online orders will not be fulfilled until the stores are back up and running at the end of the lockdown period.

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