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David Jones Hones In On CBD Store Bidders

Bidders for David Jones’ flagship Sydney and Melbourne CBD stores are reportedly set to be shortlisted soon, with offers for its iconic Elizabeth Street outlet tipped to be around $400 million – $500 million.

Reported by The Australian, the portfolio is expected to sell for around $700 million, however, commentators question whether it will be sufficient to cover David Jones’ debts.

Interested parties reportedly include Scentre Group and Charter Hall.

Some of the floors of the multi-level retail outlet may be redeveloped into offices.

The South African owned department store has continued to report high debts and slumping sales, remarking the Australian retail industry was in a recession significantly before the coronavirus pandemic.

The retailer reported an 8.1% year-on-year drop in sales in the last nine weeks of H2 FY20, however, added that foot traffic was lifting in line with loosening of restrictions.

“The decline in store sales was partly mitigated by the significant shift to online, which saw the channel growing by 100.7% in H2, and contributing 18.4% to sales,” said parent Woolworths Holdings.

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