|Founded||1926 as Empororama
1968 as Lindsay's
1973 as Target.
|Headquarters||Geelong, VIC, Australia|
Number of locations
(CEO of Target and Kmart & Managing Director - Target)
|Revenue||A$ 3.5 billion (2016)|
|A$ -195 million (2016)|
|Total assets||A$ 1.7 billion (2016)|
Number of employees
Target Australia Pty Ltd (formerly Empororama and Lindsay's) is a mid-price department store chain and Australia's largest (by store number), owned by Wesfarmers. It operates 183 Target stores and 125 Target Country stores across Australia making 308 combined stores with its national store support office located in North Geelong, Victoria. An established and well known retailer, the company sells branded clothing, cosmetics, toys, homewares, electrical, fitness and consumer electronics. In 1968, Target Australia, then known as Lindsay’s Target Pty Ltd., adopted the Target name. Despite the similar logo, name and type of outlets, there is no corporate connection to Target in the United States, nor has there ever been one. The reason the United States and Australia can both have Target stores despite having no connection to each other is that trademark law is not international but is on a country-by-country basis.
In 1926, George Lindsay and Alex McKenzie opened their first store in Geelong selling dress fabrics, manchester and furnishings, and progressively established stores in Victoria, maintaining the policy "Half the Profit, Twice the Turnover". In 1968 Myer Emporium Ltd purchased the chain of 14 stores with the idea of re-inventing the chain as a "discount department store", with the company subsequently renamed Lindsay's Target Pty Ltd. In March 1973, it was renamed Target Australia Pty Ltd. By 1982, Myer was operating 27 stores under the Target brand, but sold these, principally to Coles.
In August 1985, Myer Emporium Ltd and GJ Coles & Coy Ltd merged to become Coles Myer Limited. In 1996, Coles Myer merged the Target and Fosseys brands, and their first specialty store Baby Target was established. Then in 1998, their second speciality store, Target Home opened. Fosseys stores were later renamed Target Country, becoming the third speciality store under the Target name.
In 2001 Target announced its first ever loss, to the sum of $43m. New senior management was soon put in place, with Target repositioning itself from a store directly competing with Coles Myer stablemate Kmart and Woolworths Limited's Big W, to a more stylish, up-market, but still value-for-money, alternative to speciality stores. Store fittings and layouts were altered to reflect this change. In 2006 Target appointed Launa Inman as managing director, named Telstra Business Women of the Year in 2003, a result of her achievements as an apparel retail buyer for the company. Her position saw Target's $32 million loss at the end of 2000 turn into a $68 million profit 18 months later.
In May 2009, Target’s managing director Launa Inman announced a nationwide ban of free plastic bags for Target customers. In the press release, Inman explained:
We all have a role to play in reducing our impact on the environment. One way is to reduce the use of plastic shopping bags in our business. Target stores currently issue over 100 million plastic shopping bags each year to customers and from next Monday this will stop.
In April 2013, Stuart Machin, the former Deputy of Coles, replaced Dene Rogers as Target's managing director. In the first week of October 2013, Target spokesman Jim Cooper announced that the company will reinstate the free availability of plastic shopping bags at all of its stores, citing the receipt of around 500 formal complaints a year as the reason for the change.
In 2014, Target began their next chapter by beginning the transition in completely refurbishing their ageing stores from ground up. Their goal was to make an inviting environment that made customers want to spend more time in stores, and encourage loyal customers to bring their kids, relax and dine at their Cafés. Launching in mid 2014, Target Frankston, was the first store to be refurbished with new store layout. Exclusively found at the new transformed stores is personalised T-shirt printing, clothes tailoring, fashion stylist advice and a Target Café.
Throughout 2015, another two stores re-opened at Eastland and Chadstone shopping centre, located in the eastern Melbourne suburbs. Many more transformations will continue nationally over the coming years.
On 14 April 2016, it was announced that Target's Store Support Office in Geelong, Victoria would be relocated to Melbourne, resulting in an unspecified number of voluntary and involuntary redundancies.
Also in 2016, parent Wesfarmers re-structured Target and Kmart under a 'Department Stores' division. Kmart managing director Guy Russo was promoted to oversee the role (CEO - Department Stores division). A new managing director under Russo was chosen for Kmart, while candidates are being searched for a Target managing director.
Speaking at a Wesfarmers annual strategy briefing Guy Russo announced that Target would be exiting toy sales, pet care and luggage.
Baby Target and Target Home (discontinued)
In 1996, Target introduced Baby Target as a standalone store format specifically for baby products. The concept had limited success. Another format tried by Target was the homewares-themed store Target Home, but was later discontinued. Target Home stores have since been phased out to become larger Target stores, and still stock a larger range of homewares in a number of locations in Australia and New Zealand including Joondalup and Carousel in WA, Edwardstown in SA, Highpoint and Greensborough in VIC, and Warringah Mall in NSW and Tauranga, North Island.
Fosseys and Target Country
Fosseys was established in 1926 at George Street, Sydney by Alfred Bristow Fossey and grew to 148 stores throughout Australia, with an annual turnover of $300 million. As part of the acquisition of Grace Bros., which had purchased J.B. Young of Queanbeyan who owned Fossey's, Myer and later Coles Myer came to own Fossey's. Coles Myer used the Fosseys brand to unify a range of smaller variety stores trading under a range of other names, including Coles Variety stores, which had been the foundation of GJ Coles & Coy Ltd.
Coles Myer merged the operations of Fosseys with Target in 1996, redesigning Fosseys stores to focus on family apparel retailing in rural Australia. It also introduced Fosseys-branded merchandise with attributes of value, convenience and confidence. By 2001, all Fosseys stores located close to Target stores were closed; the remaining Fosseys stores, rebranded Target Country, continue to focus on apparel sales in smaller towns without full-merchandise Target stores. From the mid 1990s onwards there was a rebranding of some Grace Bros stores in regional NSW to Target. This included a large number of stores which had previously been part of the Dubbo-based Western Stores. Locations which converted from Grace Bros. to Target and then Target Country include Bathurst, Cowra, West Wyalong, Forbes, and Young.
As of 1 July 2007, employees of Fosseys (Australia) Pty Ltd were transferred to Target Australia Pty Ltd, and Fosseys as a legal entity was dissolved. As at June 2008, there were 118 Target Country stores throughout Australia.
Target Country Charters Towers
Target's marketing strategy employs the slogans "It's Target.". "Higher quality, lower prices". "YAY". These slogans are featured in-store and in advertising.
Previously, the company used "Get More. Pay Less.", "100% Happy", "We're Not Happy, Unless You Are" and "Target - for Fashion, Quality and Value".
In 2010, Target Australia Pty Ltd became the first Australian company to launch a 3D advertisement in Australian cinema. The advertisement was for the 2010 Toy Sale and received much media interest.
Designers for Target
In March 2007, Target launched a 42-piece winter collection designed by Stella McCartney. This exclusive Australian launch was heralded as one of the biggest retail coups of the year, and Australian media noted frenzied activity in Target stores on the morning of the launch. A number of metropolitan stores sold out of the range as soon as 10 minutes after opening, and items from the collection soon began appearing for sale on eBay at inflated prices. Another Stella McCartney collection was released in October 2010, to lesser fanfare.
In May 2007, Target announced its next designer range from Joshua Goot to a mixed reaction, and subsequently produced a collaboration with American designer Zac Posen in April 2008. In the same month, Australian fashion designer Collette Dinnigan released a range of lingerie labelled the 'Wild Hearts' collection.
In February 2012, Target launched a line of women's lingerie designed by American burlesque dancer and model Dita Von Teese. Throughout 2012, Target also announced designer collaborations for children with Collette Dinnigan and Ksubi and Roberto Cavalli for women.
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