Australian retailer Ruslan Kogan has acquired Dick Smith’s online business from Ferrier Hodgson for an undisclosed sum. The parches includes the brand’s intellectual property, customer databases and websites in Australia and New Zealand.
Kogan says he wants to “save the legacy of this great Australian brand, by transitioning to an online only model, ” and intends to run it separately to Kogan.com, using his own retail systems and architecture.
Dick Smith online business was initially put into liquidation in January due to luck of management power and sales forced it into large debts. Dick Smith receivers Ferrier Hodgson then failed to find a buyer and was about to close down the business in Australia and New Zealand. The closure of which is expected to result in nearly 3000 job losses.
Dick Smith specialises in cheap home-brand electronics will use the pooled buying power to negotiate better terms with suppliers and offer cheaper prices.
The intellectual property received “aggressive” bidding in an auction by Dick Smith’s receivers Ferrier Hodgson, Fairfax reported.
“Dick Smith is one of the most iconic Australian retail brands and we will be able to leverage the millions of dollars we’ve invested into online retail systems and architecture over the last decade to sustainably run the business, ” Kogan said in a statement.
In a statement, Kogan said the goal was to “invest in the brand and rebuild consumer trust”.
“We acknowledge that consumer trust takes years to build and can be damaged very quickly, ” the statement said.
“Ultimately, a brand grows when it delivers on its promises. We will work tirelessly to exceed the expectations of every Dick Smith customer with a beautiful shopping experience.
“We will invest in building and nurturing the Dick Smith community, and honour the great legacy of this Australian business.
“I remember as a kid always visiting Dick Smith to look for parts to upgrade my computer. There is a strong history of passion in the Dick Smith community for how technology can improve our lives, and we look forward to helping make it more affordable and accessible for all.”
Kogan had previously offered to honour Dick Smith customers’ gift cards.
Kogan will take over the online business from 1 June 2016. All Dick Smith customers will be contacted with the option of having their details removed prior to the transfer to new owners.
Customers who provided their information to Dick Smith after the appointment of receivers on 4 January 2016 will not have that information disclosed to the new owner.
“After a thorough process with multiple bidding parties we are pleased that Kogan.com is the successful acquirer of the Dick Smith online business, ” Dick Smith receiver James Stewart said.
“As Australia’s largest pure play online retail website, is a natural and logical owner of the Dick Smith online business and we are particularly pleased that the Dick Smith brand will continue under its stewardship.”
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