Dune London arrived in 2016 as part of a wave of other international brands including Aesop, but it’s gone missing from the Kiwi marketplace lately. We found out what’s happened to it.
Richard Miles, co-founder of menswear company 3 Wise Men and Dune London’s New Zealand licensee, says Dune London has not retrenched or withdrawn from the New Zealand market, but he’s been forced to put the business on hold for an unknown length of time.
This is because Dune London’s New Zealand flagship was located in Newmarket’s Westfield 277 shopping centre, which is currently in the process of being gutted in preparation for a long-awaited refurbishment.
“It’s early days for trying to establish the brand, but our flagship store was part of the demolition of 277,” Miles says. “Our hand was forced a little bit by decisions beyond our control.”
Miles says he’s also closed the second Dune London branch at Westfield St Luke’s as his leasing deal with Westfield was a “dual site arrangement”. The New Zealand-oriented portion of Dune London’s website is down as Miles is not interested in holding stock without a retail presence.
He says he hasn’t re-opened the stores due to a lack of suitable locations: “We’re waiting for various propositions and opportunities to come to fruition.” He cited a number of new developments currently under construction as potential premises.
“It’s either sit and wait for those, or wait for something that’s opportunistic and may present itself,” Miles says. “There’s not a lot of vacancy at the moment.”
At the time of launch, Miles said he planned to open between 15 and 20 Dune-branded stores in New Zealand over the next three years.