Up to 75 Target stores to close in massive restructure

Clay Curtis
May 22, 2020

Between 122 and 167 locations will either be converted or shut, or around half of Target's 284-strong store network.

Target employees will likely lose their jobs, though those at stores that will be converted to Kmart stores will be given the chance to hang onto their positions.

The struggling Australian retail sector has received a new blow with the announcement up to 75 Target stores will be closed and others converted to Kmart outlets.

Target will close stores as part of a massive restructure by Wesfarmers. There are also target stores in Yass, Goulburn, Cootamundra, Merimbula, Young and Tumut.

They include converting "suitable" Target and Target Country stores to Kmart stores, the closure of between 10 to 25 large format Target stores, the closure of the remaining 50 small format Target Country stores, and a "significant restructuring of the Target store support office".

It's not clear what their intentions are for city Target shopfronts and the closure locations have not been made public yet. "If you're not going to support one another, then don't support them".

Federal Agriculture Minister David Littleproud said that companies like Wesfarmers had "lost their moral compass" in making major changes that would significantly affect regional communities.

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"Unfortunately, the disruptive and competitive nature of the retail sector requires us to make some hard decisions to ensure we have a viable Target business into the future, while continuing the strong growth of Kmart and Catch", Bailey said.

"The reduction in the Target store network will be complemented by increased investment in our digital capabilities, following the continued strong growth in online sales across the Kmart Group and the pleasing progress in Catch since its acquisition in August 2019", Wesfarmers Managing Director Rob Scott said.

"Following the completion of the first phase of the Target review, Kmart Group has identified a number of actions to accelerate the growth of Kmart", the stock market statement said.

The company began in Geelong in 1926 as a drapery.

Western Australia has 30 Target stores, including 16 in the Perth and Mandurah area.

The changes are expected to happen over the next year, with the majority occurring in 2021.

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