Michael Hill to Shut Emma & Roe Charm Stores

The charm has worn off.

On June 21, Michael Hill announced it would shut all 30 of the Emma & Roe charm stores it currently operates in Australia and New Zealand.

In March, the jeweler—which just two years ago had touted the charm brand as a success story—said it planned to close 24 of those stores but retain six. Now it has decided that even those six will close. The charm brand’s website is also shutting down.

CEO Phil Taylor said the company has “decided that a singular focus on the Michael Hill brand will best position us to deliver a stronger customer proposition and financial results.”

The statement noted that the Michael Hill brand accounts for 95 percent of its revenues.

Originally the company hoped to reposition the brand toward the demi-fine category.

Said the statement from March: “Demi-fine is a relatively new segment of the market combining fine jewellery with fashion for those customers seeking stylish yet affordable items to accessorise their wardrobe. The demi-fine segment allows customers with a preference for fine jewellery to achieve their desired look but at a lower price.”

Now, it’s abandoning that plan, though it added that the “demi-fine market remains a compelling market opportunity to pursue at the right time.”

The charm brand was launched in 2014. The name Emma & Roe was derived by combining the name of founder Michael Hill’s daughter Emma, who now chairs the company, with the maiden name of his wife, the former Christine Roe.

In January, the company announced it was selling the nine mall-based stores that comprised its U.S. division and exiting the American market, following nearly a decade of downbeat results. In April, it announced that no buyer had been found for those stores and they would be closed.

Brisbane, Australia–based Michael Hill International is composed of more than 300 jewelry stores in Australia, New Zealand, and Canada.

(Image via emmaandroe.com.au)

JCK News Director