JD Sports opens Sydney flagship, accelerates Australia expansion
today Dec 3, 2018
JD Sports is continuing its growth abroad and is ramping up its Australian operations with a plan to double its store numbers on the back of shoppers showing an "unbelievable" appetite for its products.
The company only set foot in Australia for the first time in spring 2017 and had plans for around four or five openings. But it opened its 15th location last week and the next 18 months could see another 15 openings, the company’s Australian head Hilton Seskin told local media.
Its latest store is at Sydney's Pitt Street Mall and Seskin said new leases have already been signed for several more, with the company continuing to scout strong sites.
Seskin said the firm’s success has happened in the country because it’s doing sports fashion in a different way from the local competition, which includes Super Retail’s Rebel Sport and Platypus, Hype DC and The Athlete’s Foot, all owned by Accent Group.
The country’s athletic shoe and clothing market is worth around A$2.3 billion, the Sydney Morning Herald reported, and JD seems to be looking to expand that via new products as Seskin said the company doesn’t just want to move in and grab existing market share.
The company would appear to have some advantages given its strong relationships with the global players and its ability to secure the exclusives that, at times, account for half of the product it sells.
The new store, for instance, features launch zones for brands where the big names can engage more deeply with consumers as they unveil their latest offerings. There’s also an elevated Nike concession area for premium product and add-ons like personalisation.
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