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UK Retailer John Lewis to Expand to Australia

Global retailers looking for growth are setting their sights Down Under.

John Lewis is the latest to launch a physical presence in Australia, with plans to open shop-in-shops within six branches of department store Myer.

According to a press release Friday, the British chain will open its first concession before Christmas in Myer’s newly remodeled Warringah store, outside Sydney. Further openings will follow in Melbourne, Perth, Bondi and Chadstone, as well as in Myer’s flagship store in Sydney next February.

The shop-in-shops will range between 600 square feet and 850 square feet (by comparison, the John Lewis on Oxford Street in London is 320,000 square feet), selling a small selection of the retailer’s in-house home and lifestyle products. Once up and running, John Lewis will have 30 shop-in-shops worldwide.

“We’re delighted to be expanding our international presence and bringing John Lewis to new countries around the world, both through physical collaborations and by expanding our online international delivery destinations. There is a real synergy between Myer’s customer base and ours, and we believe they are the perfect partner for our first Australian shop-in-shops,” Katie Jordan, head of international development, said.

Daniel Bracken, chief merchandise and customer officer and deputy chief executive at Myer, added, “We are excited to exclusively offer Myer customers the first opportunity in Australia to shop the John Lewis brand in a tailor-made lifestyle concept.”

In addition to opening concessions in Australia, John Lewis upped its international e-commerce presence from 33 to 40 countries. People in Hong Kong, South Korea, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Switzerland, the Philippines and Malaysia can now order John Lewis fashion and homewares online. Further, customers can now pay in 10 additional currencies.

In the past 12 months, John Lewis has seen its online international traffic grow by 15 percent and its global e-commerce sales increase by 50 percent. Among the most popular ordered items are the retailer’s in-house line of bed linen and British brands such as Joules and Jigsaw. In fact, women’s fashion brands have accounted for 12 percent of total international sales in the last year.