The 152-year-old Wellington department store signalled the sale yesterday afternoon.
In its release to the public, Kirkcaldie & Stains said David Jones would be a significant addition to the Wellington retail environment, bringing new brands to New Zealand as well as continuing to stock many of the existing ones.
In a release sent out yesterday, David Jones chief executive officer Iain Nairn says the struggling heritage store approached his company about the sale.
“We were excited when Kirkcaldie & Stains approached us. David Jones is a recognised brand in New Zealand and we’re confident this beautiful building in this cosmopolitan city is the perfect home for our first New Zealand store,” he says. “We are proud to reinvigorate the historic retail space and maintain it as the home of New Zealand’s premium department store.”
Nairn says David Jones will fully modernise Kirkcaldies’ interior while preserving its heritage-listed frontage. The aim is to create a “world class shopping environment with the quality finishings and latest retail technology that shoppers expect from a premium department store.”
David Jones is the fifth company owned by Woolworths Holdings Limited to enter the New Zealand market, joining Country Road, Witchery, Trenery and Mimco. More than 500 staff are employed throughout New Zealand.