The TJX Cos. Inc. is expanding its off-price empire into Australia.
On Tuesday, TJX said it signed a definitive agreement to purchase Trade Secret, an off-price retailer with 35 stores in Australia, from Gazal Corp. Ltd. for a purchase price of 80 million Australian dollars, or $58.54 million.
TJX operates a buying office in Australia, but no stores. TJX expects the transaction to be consummated by the end of calendar-year 2015.
Trade Secret sells branded apparel for women, men and children, as well as footwear, accessories and home fashions “at great values,” TJX said. Virtually all of the Trade Secret stores are located in the eastern part of Australia. Trade Secret opened its first store in 1992 and generates 164.5 million Australian dollars in annual revenue, or $120.2 million.
“We are excited about the anticipated addition of Trade Secret to the TJX family of companies and expanding to another continent, which underscores the strength of our international growth opportunities,” said Carol Meyrowitz, chairman and chief executive officer of TJX. “TJX is one of the few major U.S. retailers to have expanded successfully in international markets, including Canada and Europe, which gives us confidence in our potential growth in Australia. With consumer demographics similar to Canada, we see Trade Secret as a strong platform to grow in Australia, similar to how we entered Canada with our acquisition of Winners in 1990 and grew that business into a leading Canadian retailer. We believe TJX can further develop Trade Secret by leveraging our international leadership experience, buying scale, vendor universe, marketing and other capabilities. We view Trade Secret as a good fit with our own corporate culture and are looking forward to growing this business for the future.”
TJX, America’s largest off-pricer, as of May 2, the end of the company’s first quarter, operated 3,441 stores in seven countries – the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Ireland, Germany, Poland and Austria, and three e-commerce sites. Stores operate under the T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods and Sierra Trading Post nameplates. The company also operates tjmaxx.com and sierratradingpost.com in the U.S.; Winners, HomeSense, and Marshalls in Canada, and T.K. Maxx, HomeSense stores and tkmaxx.com, in Europe.