SINGAPORE (Feb 6): Luxury watch retailer The Hour Glass is venturing into New Zealand with the  purchase of Auckland-based Mansors Jewellers, as well as two prime corner retail and commercial properties in the city. 

The Hour Glass is investing more than NZ$80 million ($71.8 million) in these three purchases to mark its entry into New Zealand via its largest city, the group reported on Thursday. 

The group, which already has a combined network of 43 boutiques throughout the Asia Pacific, views New Zealand as a greenfield luxury watch market.

“The move into New Zealand is demonstrative of the group’s desire to broaden its business in the Oceania region after having committed itself to the development of the luxury watch markets in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane over the last 30 years,” says The Hour Glass. 

As part of these fresh investments, the group purchased the entire operation of Mansors Jewellers, a family-owned business managed by three generations since it began in 1953.

The business, which is located at 154 Queen Street, currently represents a curated selection of luxury brands including Rolex, Cartier and Chopard. It also manages New Zealand’s only officially certified Rolex service centre.

Mansors Jewellers' owner David Mansor says that despite being approached by other interested parties, he is pleased to have finally selected the right buyer for the business.

Apart from Mansors Jewellers, The Hour Glass also acquired two other properties as real estate investments. 

The first property, the Blackett’s Building, is a 901 sqm commercial retail and office property located at 90–92 Queen Street. The second property, located at 112-116 Queen Street, is a 835 sqm five-storey building which comprises both retail and  office space.

Both buildings are located in the heart of Auckland’s luxury retail precinct and are presently tenanted.
 
“The Hour Glass’ core mission is to advance watch culture around the world. Recognising the bourgeoning community of watch enthusiasts in New Zealand, we are delighted with this opportunity to acquire stewardship of Mansors, a key historic player in Auckland’s fine watch and jewellery sector,” says group managing director of The Hour Glass Michael Tay. 

As at 10.19am, shares in The Hour Glass are trading 1.5 cent lower, or down 2%, at 75 cents.