Having closed three non-performing outlets in the last 12 months, Ted’s Cameras is now looking at several acquisitions in the NSW and Queensland markets.
Ted’s Camera CEO Nic Peasley attributed the closure of the Chastwood Chase store (NSW) early last year and more recently Eastlands (Ringwood, VIC) and now the Erina Fair (NSW) outlets primarily to escalating rents and the poor location of the stores within their shopping centre.
‘We have recently closed Eastland and Erina and closed Chatswood last year. Each store was closed due to escalating and unsustainable rents combined with stagnant sales due mainly to their poor locations within those shopping centres,’ he said.
He said that other than the Erina closure, Ted’s had been able to absorb staff affected by the closures.
‘We will be aggressive with underperforming stores as we will be in continually looking to contain rents.’
He said that Ted’s looked for at least $2 million in turnover from a store.
Mr Peasley did not see Ted’s Cameras continuing to reduce its number of outlets ,which currently stand at 21 plus the pro showroom located within the company’s South Melbourne head office. Photo Counter spoke to him while on a trip to Queensland where he was looking at opening two new Ted’s Camera stores in large shopping malls in suburban Brisbane and on the Gold Coast. These would be all-new stores.
He added that there were other acquisitions on the table involving existing photo stores, but he did not want to make further public comment.
Explaining the reasons for closing the Chatswood Chase store early last year, Mr Peasley told Photo Counter at the time: ‘Months of rental negotiations failed to provide a rent and lease that we felt was acceptable to us. This decision was not taken lightly. We decided to close to demonstrate that retailers simply cannot exist in shopping centres under the rental expectations of the centre landlords.
‘There is most definitely a sales level that you need to attain in this current climate to perform well in a shopping centre, and if we cannot attain that level then we will always consider our position.’
Speaking this week, he said that Ted’s has since had some success in re-negotiating rental agreements, but retailers had to be prepared to move on if they couldn’t reach agreement with landlords.
‘We have a figure that we will typically be prepared to pay for one square metre. If it starts to get above that then you start to lose the battle.’
He added that Ted’s would be only be looking to establish new stores in A-grade shopping centre locations in future.
‘On a positive note,’ he concluded, ‘Our second quarter was very good and we have strong momentum now carrying us into the second half of the year.
‘We are looking at A-grade shopping centre opportunities particularly in Queensland in terms of opening new Ted’s stores, as well as looking at a number of acquisition opportunities now.’