NZ Pumpkin Patch to close 20 stores in US; intends opening more stores in Australia

NZ Pumpkin Patch to close 20 stores in US; intends opening more stores in Austra

Tuesday saw children's clothing retailer Pumpkin Patch Ltd. announcing that, given the condition of prolonged financial crisis, it will have to close 20 stores in the United States.

Via a statement, Pumpkin Patch said that this difficult decision has been made by the company, considering the high degree of uncertainty as to how long the current downturn will continue. It today outlined a reorganization plan that it has begun implementing in the United States.

It was specified by Pumpkin Patch that nearly 20 of the company's 35 stores would be closed by it over the next two months.

The company said: "The stores to close are generally the more recently opened stores that have struggled to gain traction in the very difficult retail environment that has prevailed in the market since late 2007."

However, the New-Zealand based company is mulling over the prospect of opening more stores in Australia, as it sees a chance to widen its business there in the next two years.

When asked about this recent development, chief financial officer, Matthew Washington, said that Australia has very different market conditions as compared to the US.

Mr. Washington said: "Australia has always offered growth opportunities for us, so we've always continued to grow in Australia. I just think in this environment there are opportunities starting to appear which may not have been there 12 months ago."

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