Party to expansion

Party ShopAfter 25 years in business, an Australian family-owned party business is looking abroad, advertising franchise opportunities in Auckland and Wellington in New Zealand on its website.

Mark Morthorpe, director at Party Shop Group, told Inside Retail PREMIUM that since launching the company’s website six months ago it’s been going “gangbusters”, with international franchise enquiries.

“We’re actually talking to some people in NZ now, I don’t think we’ll go any further than NZ because the language barrier is a shocker. We’ve had a number of people from Malaysia, Indonesia, and India wanting to do things, but logistically it’s not a sound operation.”

Although Morthorpe says the NZ expansion is “secret squirrel” at the moment, he says more information should be available in the next three to four months.

The six store chain operates in regional parts of Australia with an average footprint of around 350sqm, although Morthorpe says he is open to the idea of stores in metro areas if the opportunity arises.

The website is advertising franchise opportunities in Cairns and Brisbane, Queensland; Sydney, NSW; Melbourne, Victoria; and Hobart, Tasmania.

“Our head office is regionally based so we understand what happens in the country centres as opposed to metro, but if someone wanted to do something in metro we’d

be more than happy to have a chat,” said Morthorpe.

Party Shop will open its seventh store in Sunbury, VIC, by May 1. The new store will feature a smaller footprint of 110sqm, but will still offer the company’s full range of products.

Best sellers are balloons, but Party Shop also offers a range of products for all types of celebrations from weddings and bucks parties, to funerals and divorces.

“We’ve got some glasses with ‘happily divorced’ on them and people try and get plain pinatas and then stick a photo of the ex on it and belt the you know what out of them,” he said.

Beyond Sunbury, Party Shop is looking at new locations in Wagga and Albury in this half of the year, and then around another four locations by year end.

This story first appeared in Inside Retail PREMIUM issue 2038. To subscribe, click here.



1 comment

  1. Peter posted on March 26, 2015

    geez.... have any of these stores had to close down previously... (or have any others ever gone bust), previously? For the hero photo above, its a bit of a fail, isn't it?.... Acres of slatwall with heaps of gaps in the stock.... Dozens of square metres of EMPTY floor space (centre left of the image).... LOL

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