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Michael Hill to Exit US Market

Jan 25, 2018 5:59 AM   By Rapaport News
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RAPAPORT... Michael Hill will close its US operations after a run of disappointing sales results in the “challenging” and “loss-making” market, the Australia-based jeweler said Wednesday.

“Our time in the highly competitive US jewelry market taught us a lot and helped to strengthen our core business, including the development of our bridal-collection strategy,” said CEO Phil Taylor. “However, our US operations have not gained sufficient traction in recent years, and the level of capital required to scale up the business is not warranted under current trading conditions.”

The company has struggled in the US since launching there in 2008, despite its investment in its business model, new marketing initiatives and efforts to increase brand awareness, Taylor said. Its US sales fell 15% in the six months ending December 31.

Michael Hill intends to refocus the capital earmarked for US operations to parts of the company that show the highest returns and growth potential. The group has 172 stores in Australia, 53 in New Zealand and 83 in Canada, which the jeweler said are performing strongly and account for 95% of its revenue.

The company will continue to operate its nine US stores as it negotiates its exit.
Tags: Australia, Canada, jeweler, Michael Hill, New Zealand, Phil Taylor, Professional Care Plan, Rapaport News
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