Macquarie Wealth Management first announced the possibility of closing 60 stores Australia wide on March 15 after reviewing Big W’s business in the wake of the company losing $110 million last financial year and $8 million in the first half of 2019.
‘Partial closure of the most unprofitable and shorter lease stores is more likely,’ Macquarie said in the note, revealed in The Australian.
‘Given significant closure costs for the portfolio, a more likely scenario is Woolworths to close up to one-third of its stores (60 stores), in our view.’
And while Macquarie didn’t specifically name which Big W stores would be affected by the possible closures, it did say that regional areas could be hit hardest.
At present, there are around 30 stores located in rural and regional areas around Australia - leading local papers to question whether the Big Ws situated in their specific areas will be affected.
To see the full list of regional stores that could be closing down, see below.
At present, Big W bosses say a final decision on store closures has not been made.
Says a spokesperson: ‘At our half-year results in February we announced a national review of our Big W store and distribution centre network.
‘The review is ongoing and no decisions about our network have been made. We will update our team members and the market once the review has been completed.’
THE 30 REGIONAL STORES AT RISK
North Rockhampton, QLD
Tweed Head, NSW
Port Augusta, SA