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BBC Hardware Home Depot
IndustryRetail, Home Improvement
FateAbsorbed into Bunnings Warehouse
Founded3 October 1992
Number of locations
61 (2001)
Area served
Australia, New Zealand
OwnerBBC Hardware
Number of employees
5,000+ (2000)
ParentBurns Philp (1992-1994) Howard Smith Limited (1994-2001)

Hardwarehouse was a former home improvement chain in Australia and New Zealand. The chain was an offshoot of BBC Hardware, which was owned by Burns Philp and then Howard Smith Limited. It was established as a way for Burns Philp to implement and develop the hardware warehouse concept based on comparisons to overseas chains B&Q and Home Depot.

Along with BBC Hardware, the chain was once the largest independently owned hardware retailer in Australia and New Zealand with 61 stores and over 5,000 employees, before it was absorbed into Bunnings Warehouse in 2001,


The first store was opened in Bankstown in Sydney on 3 October 1992, although the store had a larger selling area than the ones that opened later, it proved to be very successful. BBC Hardware continued market testing to help the concept to gain traction in the retail hardware market. Another store opened at Rockdale in 1993, and two more at Thornleigh and Caringbah in 1994, as the format had been simplified.[1]

In July 1994, Howard Smith Limited bought BBC Hardware Limited from Burns Philp and the chain was rebranded as Hardwarehouse. Subsequently, the chain expanded by opening new stores in Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth, and overseas into New Zealand. Since 1994, Hardwarehouse opened up to 13 stores a year. By 2001, the chain had 58 stores in Australia and 3 in New Zealand.[2]


There were a total of 61 Hardwarehouse stores operating across Australia and New Zealand. In Australia, there was one store in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 28 stores in New South Wales (NSW), 12 in Queensland (QLD), 2 in Tasmania (TAS), 8 in Victoria (VIC) and 5 in Western Australia (WA). There were no stores in Northern Territory or South Australia.

In New Zealand, Hardwarehouse operated primarily in Auckland (AK), with 3 stores across the region.


ACT: Fyshwick.

NSW: Artarmon, Ashfield, Bankstown, Bella Vista, Belrose, Blacktown, Bonnyrigg, Campbelltown, Caringbah, Coffs Harbour, Crossroads, Glendale, Kotara, Lidcombe, Lismore, Mascot, Minchinbury, North Parramatta, Penrith, Rockdale, Shellharbour, Thornleigh, Tuggerah, Tweed Heads, Wagga Wagga, West Gosford, Wollongong and Villawood.

QLD: Booval, Burleigh Heads, Cairns, Capalaba, Caboolture, Everton Park, Maroochydore, Mt Gravatt, Oxley, Rockhampton, Toowoomba South and Underwood.

TAS: Kings Meadows and Moonah.

VIC: Bayswater, Doveton, Maribyrnong, Moorabbin, Notting Hill, Nunawading, Thomastown and Wendouree.

WA: Cannington, Innaloo, Morley, O'Connor and Whitfords.

New Zealand[edit]

AK: Burswood, Manukau and Rosedale.


A converted Hardwarehouse store now trading as Bunnings Warehouse in Wagga Wagga, New South Wales. The three columns topped by balls were a fixture of all Hardwarehouse stores.

On 13 June 2001, Howard Smith Limited, owner of BBC Hardware and Hardwarehouse, was bought by Wesfarmers Limited. The chain began its transition with the stores trading as Bunnings Warehouse in Australia and New Zealand by the end of 2001. During the transition period, 3 of the acquired Hardwarehouse stores in Australia were closed, as the rest were reformatted by late 2004.[3]

A number of former Bunnings Warehouse stores that were reformatted Hardwarehouse stores were converted into retail bulky goods stores, or repurposed for other uses. A few other stores were demolished and rebuilt for larger Bunnings Warehouse stores.


  1. ^ "About Us". Hardwarehouse. 2000-10-15. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  2. ^ "Wesfarmers News - Wesfarmers sends offer document to Howard Smith shareholders" (PDF). 29 June 2001. Retrieved 15 November 2017.
  3. ^ Hooper, Narelle (June 13, 2001). "Howard Smith shares boom with news of Wesfarmers takeover". Retrieved 26 April 2016.