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Debenhams Confirms Australian Flagship Store
UK department store Debenhams has finally confirmed the opening of its first Australian flagship store in Melbourne, scheduled to open in September 2017.
The store opening, which is scheduled for September 2017, is part of a partnership Debenhams struck with Harris Scarfe owner Pepkor, announced late last year.
Debenhams International director David Smith said the Department Store would provide Melbourne shoppers with an exclusive, curated selection of the best that Debenhams has on offer.
“International expansion is a strategic priority for Debenhams and we are delighted to be working with Pepkor on entering the Australian market,” he said.
“We are excited to be opening our first store in Melbourne in the St Collins Lane development, and are confident that our offer of exciting products and brands, combined with a world class shopping experience, will be well received by the Australian public.”
Graham Dean, MD Pepkor South East Asia Department Stores Division, announced the opening. “This partnership heralds one of the most exciting department store stories in the nation, and we look forward to opening the first Debenhams Australia store in Melbourne in September 2017.
“In bringing Debenhams to Australia, we will distil the best of Debenhams’ expertise into a designer department store, whose range is especially curated to suit the Melbourne CBD shopper.”
Pepkor’s plans for the flagship store revolve around creating a “designer department store for the digital age”.
“We plan to bring to life the best in-store customer experience for the digital age,” Dean said. “Shopping at Debenhams St Collins Lane will be a unique, immersive experience, where every customer can engage across a broad platform of in-store and online touchpoints.”
Store construction is set to begin in early 2017.
“The landmark leasing arrangement will see construction of 3,600 square-metres in retail space over two levels,” said Dean. “Inevitably, construction will generate local jobs here in Melbourne, followed by an injection into retail employment.”
Further Debenhams sites have not yet been confirmed. However, research into further sites and locations is ongoing.
“We are actively engaged in negotiations to open additional sites and will work strategically to identify the best location and right market,” said Dean.