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Lowe’s Failed Australian Business Closes All Stores

Lowe’s Failed Australian Business Closes All Stores

The final stores from Lowe’s failed Australian joint venture closed this month.

Lowe’s partner in the business, Woolworths Limited, oversaw liquidation of the Masters Home Improvement assets. Additionally, the company announced that all stores would cease operating after Dec. 11. The chain had more than 60 locations.

The store closures follow the sale earlier this year of another part of Lowe’s and Woolworths’ home improvement business, Home Timber and Hardware Group, which is a wholesaler and store chain.

Woolworths operates supermarket, liquor and hospitality businesses in Australia. The company partnered with Lowe’s in the home improvement business in 2009. The companies began opening Masters Home Improvement stores in 2011.

On Jan. 18, Lowe’s announced that the joint venture was unprofitable and the company was pulling out of Australia. Since then, Lowe’s has spent much of 2016 negotiating with Woolworths about selling Masters Home Improvement and Home Timber and Hardware. The venture had been losing millions of dollars.

Lowe’s requested court intervention for winding down the partnership. However, an Australian federal court sent the companies to a third party to resolve disagreements, according to The Sydney Morning Herald

About Kate Klein

Kate Klein
Kate is an assistant editor for Hardware Retailing magazine. She reports on news and industry events. She graduated from Cedarville University in her home state of Ohio, where she earned a bachelor's degree in English and minored in creative writing. She loves being an aunt, teaching writing to kids, running, reading long books, farm living and, as Walt Whitman says, traveling the open road, “healthy, free, the world before me.”