UK retail giant Sports Direct is to open stores and venture into etailing in Austrailia and New Zealand in a joint venture with MySale subsidiary OzSale.com.au.
Sports Direct suggested such a move was on the cards last month, when it acquired a 4.8% stake in etailer MySale on June 18.
It plans to open three flagship stores in Australia and one in New Zealand, replicating its UK retail model, as well as hosting an OzSale.com.au outlet within each of the stores. It is currently working with MySale on the project and “will announce a partnership with a leading Australian retail partner shortly,” it said in a statement this morning.
The Mike Ashley-led business did not give a specific date for the online launch, but said its Australian and New Zealand sites will be launched later this year and will be ready to ship goods in the same month.
Sports Direct chief executive Dave Forsey said: “This partnership will give Sports Direct access to the tremendous markets in Australia and New Zealand […] where sport is a way of life.”
Sports Direct has had a busy month: alongside the MySale acquisition, it became embroiled in a row with Adidas over “anti-competiitve” behaviour and also sought to take over footwear business Office. Shareholders also approved a much-contested bonus scheme that will reward Ashley and an unknown number of other employees of the company some 25 million shares worth £200m. The retailer was also ordered to stop selling some of its branded products in a High Court settlement with Supergroup.