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JB Hi Fi Closes Stores As Premier Sack 9,000 No Rent To Be Paid

JB Hi-Fi has temporarily closed its New Zealand business while retail Group Premier Investments has moved to sack 9,000 people.

The JB Hi Fi closure was made following the New Zealand’s government’s introduction of alert level 4 restrictions that limit all non-essential businesses.

The company’s 14 stores which only represent 3% financial contribution will see both their online and commercial operations close for four weeks effective from today.

Premier Investments has also moved to stand down all its employees in Australia after deciding to shut its stores from March 26 to April 22.

The Australian employees will not be paid during this time, but they will be able to access accrued annual leave and long service entitlements.

In a warning shot to retail landlords, Premier said it will not pay any rent globally for the duration of the shutdown.

Around 70 per cent of its stores are in “holdover” or with leases expiring in 2020, which provides the group with maximum flexibility.

Mark McInnes, chief executive of Premier Retail, will work without pay or other entitlements for the period of the shutdown.

The entire Just executive team have also been stood down and have agreed to work from home when required with either no pay or reduced leave entitlements.

Non-executive directors will receive no remuneration during this period.

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