SAN FRANCISCO--()--Williams-Sonoma, Inc. (NYSE: WSM), the North America-based retailer that specializes in high-quality products for the home, today announced that it has signed a lease for approximately 22,000 square feet of retail space to house four of its iconic brands, Williams-Sonoma, Pottery Barn, Pottery Barn Kids, and West Elm at the newly constructed Exchange Building in Sydney, Australia, at Bondi Junction. The four stores, currently slated to open in early fiscal 2013, are the first retail locations outside of North America to be owned and operated by the retailer as part of its overall global expansion strategy.
“I’m thrilled to continue our global expansion by opening our first Australian locations in Sydney”
The Exchange Building is located at 466-472 Oxford Street Mall, Bondi Junction, just 4 miles east of the central business district at the eastern end of the mall, opposite popular shopping destination Westfield Bondi Junction Center and adjacent to the Bondi Junction’s Rail/Bus Interchange. Coombes Property Group is the developer, owner and manager of the Exchange development.
“I’m thrilled to continue our global expansion by opening our first Australian locations in Sydney,” said Laura Alber, President and Chief Executive Officer, Williams-Sonoma, Inc. “We have spent a great deal of time looking for the right location and believe that the Exchange Building possesses the key elements for success. It offers us a central shopping location with easy access for pedestrians and commuters, as well as the perfect amount of space to introduce our brands to Australia.”
THE WILLIAMS-SONOMA EXPERIENCE
Since its founding by Chuck Williams in 1956, the Williams-Sonoma brand has been bringing people together around food. A leading specialty retailer of high-quality products for the kitchen and home, the brand seeks to provide world-class service and an engaging customer experience. Products include cookware, cooks’ tools, cutlery, electrics, bakeware, tabletop and bar, outdoor, cookbooks and decorative accessories. A specialty food hall offers a range of distinctive food items, from pre-prepared foods and mixes, to spices and sauces that enhance the culinary experience. The Sydney store will feature a cooking school and professional demonstration kitchen with a full calendar of cooking classes, tastings and demonstrations conducted by expert culinary staff and guest chefs. In addition, a comprehensive gift registry program for weddings and other special events will be available in the store. On williams-sonoma.com and the Williams-Sonoma blog, The Blender, customers can find recipes, tips and techniques that will help them create delicious meals and wonderful memories.
THE POTTERY BARN EXPERIENCE
Established in 1949 and acquired by Williams-Sonoma, Inc. in 1986, Pottery Barn is a premier multi-channel home furnishings retailer. Pottery Barn was founded on the idea that home furnishings should be exceptional in comfort, quality, style, and value. The Sydney store will reflect this ethos and will be organized according to lifestyle displays, designed to inspire customers and make shopping easy and enjoyable. There will be destinations within the store dedicated to living rooms, outdoor spaces, dining rooms, bedrooms and bathrooms, as well as feature walls that will display lighting, rugs, and window treatments. Focused displays on bedding, dinnerware, frames, and candles will also be featured throughout the retail floor. At the center of the store will be the Design Studio, a destination for customers to sit and discuss their furniture and decorating needs and plan their space with specially trained associates. The Design Studio houses fabric, wood and leather swatches so customers can see all the choices available to them. A comprehensive Wedding & Gift Registry will also be available in store for customers who wish to register for a special event in their life, including birthdays, anniversaries and weddings. Customers seeking decorating advice and entertaining ideas can find them at our Design Studio feature on potterybarn.com.
THE POTTERY BARN KIDS EXPERIENCE
Launched in 1999, Pottery Barn Kids serves as an inspirational destination for creating childhood memories by decorating nurseries, bedrooms and play spaces. Pottery Barn Kids offers exclusive, innovative, and high-quality products designed specifically with children in mind for creating magical spaces where children can play, laugh, learn and grow. Product categories available in the Sydney store will include furniture, bedding, bathroom accessories, window treatments, rugs, lighting, decorative accessories, classic toys, nursery essentials, and gear such as luggage, backpacks, and reusable lunch bags. Parents will welcome the reassurance that Pottery Barn Kids ensures all of its products are tested to verify their safety. The store will offer parents a distinctive shopping experience aimed at delivering outstanding customer service and inspirational design expertise. Specially trained associates will be available for complimentary in-store or in-home design services and are equipped to help with creating child-friendly spaces. In-store monogramming as well as Baby & Gift Registry services will be available in-store. On the website, potterybarnkids.com, customers can find unique features such as Room Planning and Bed Design Tools, inspirational articles on decorating children’s spaces and a celebrations section filled with festive ideas for kids’ birthday parties and baby showers.
THE WEST ELM EXPERIENCE
Since it launched in 2002, West Elm has been helping people express their personal style at home with authentic, affordable, and approachable products. Each season, West Elm’s talented in-house team of designers creates a collection that can’t be found anywhere else, and works with artists and independent designers globally and locally to develop collaborations that are exclusive to the brand. The brand also offers handmade and one-of-a-kind discoveries from around the world, working closely with organizations that support the development of global craft communities and artisan skills. An increasing number of West Elm products are marked “West Elm Green” – a label that proudly indicates responsibly produced, organic, recycled, rapidly renewable, or non-toxic products. A complete assortment of furniture, bedding, bathroom accessories, rugs, lighting, decorative accessories, dining, kitchen products and gifts will be offered in the Sydney store. In addition, West Elm will offer complimentary design consultations and space planning sessions, working closely with customers to help define their design needs and personal style. On westelm.com, and on the West Elm blog, Front & Main, customers can find the latest collections, helpful design tips and tools, videos and information about current collaborations, as well as share photos of their homes, inspiring one another and discovering new ways to express their personal style.
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, as well as assumptions that, if they do not fully materialize or prove incorrect, could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements include statements relating to our anticipated opening of retail stores in Australia and the success of such stores, and our global expansion strategy. The risks and uncertainties that could cause our results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements include the risks that our stores do not open on schedule or are not successful, and the risk that we are not able to execute our global strategy as planned. These and other risks and uncertainties are described more fully in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended January 29, 2012, all subsequent quarterly reports on Form 10-Q and current reports on Form 8-K. All forward-looking statements in this press release are based on information available to us as of the date hereof, and we assume no obligation to update these forward-looking statements.
ABOUT WILLIAMS-SONOMA, INC.
Williams-Sonoma, Inc. is a specialty retailer of high-quality products for the home. These products, representing seven distinct merchandise strategies – Williams-Sonoma (cookware and wedding registry), Pottery Barn (furniture and bridal registry), Pottery Barn Kids (kids’ furniture and baby registry), PBteen (girls’ bedding and boys’ bedding), West Elm (modern furniture and room decor), Williams-Sonoma Home (luxury furniture and decorative accessories) and Rejuvenation (lighting and hardware) – are marketed through 579 stores, seven direct mail catalogs and six e-commerce websites. Williams-Sonoma, Inc. currently operates in the United States and Canada, offers international shipping to customers worldwide, and franchises its brands throughout the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates.