Silly Solly’s defies retail gloom to open more stores
DISCOUNT king Silly Solly's is aiming to open four new stores in Queensland by the end of the year which will take its footprint to 16 outlets since its rebirth two years ago.
Once a dominant player in the discount variety arena, Silly Solly's sold out to the Warehouse Group in 2000 and eventually became a virtual retail memory.
However, the brand that was made famous by Solly Stanton, was reborn in 2017 at Rockhampton and the company is now on a mission to "make shopping great again".
It will officially open a 1200sq m Morayfield next week and another in the Whitsunday Shopping Centre at Cannonvale, Airle Beach.
By the end of the year Silly Solly's plans to open in Emerald and at the Robina Super Centre on the Gold Coast.
Silly Solly's director Steve Watchman, who is shareholder in the company with Mr Stanton and Brad Walton, said the "nothing over $5" specialists were looking at expanding interstate.
"We started in central Queensland and we've just worked our way down. We have people coming to us looking at sites in NSW, Victoria and South Australia and of course in Brisbane as well," he said.
"But we haven't committed to anything yet."
Unlike the previous Silly Solly's, the current business is run on a licence model which Mr Watchman said was a cheaper option for potential owners and ensures flexibility.
"We talk to the licensee, we explain the model, we ask them where they want to be, we find the property and negotiate the lease, introduce them to the wholesalers and away they go," he said.
"We walk them though the whole process."
Mr Watchman said the rapid expansion is based on a well known brand, the cheapest prices and that the business is virtually online proof.
"We have a brand - Silly Solly's - which people get all nostalgic about and we have everything under $5 which takes the online competition out of the equation," he said.
"We give customers what they want and the prices they can afford.
"You don't see people walking around with a phone working out if they can buy cheaper elsewhere."