Topics:  business, closing, convience store, hoffman's friendly grocer

A convenient purchase

Neil Parfitt is selling up shop, despite thriving business.
Neil Parfitt is selling up shop, despite thriving business. Georja Ryan

CONVENIENCE stores, as their name suggests, have long been the most handy place to pick up a loaf of bread or bottle of milk.

But are the days of the general store nearing closing time as competition spikes and shoppers head to larger chains for their two-minute grocery shop?

Hoffman's Friendly Grocer on Grafton St shut up shop earlier this year and if the Glennie Heights Convenience Store is not sold by Monday, it too will close its doors for the final time.

Free Choice Tobacconist on Fitzroy St is also up for sale, but owner Neil Parfitt said it was not because business was bad, rather the opposite.

"I know there are a lot of businesses closing (because business is down), but that's not our reason for selling," he said.

The store brings in on average $120,000 each week, so income is not an issue; Mr Parfitt just said after running the store for eight years, it was time for a change.

Glennie Heights Convenience Store owner and Landmark Harcourts real estate agent Richard Thew said he too was leaving the store owner game to pursue other commitments.

With his real estate hat on, Mr Thew said though there was good inquiry into small stores, people were still too afraid to sign the papers.

"I've had people interested but in this economic climate, it's understandable why they're a bit reluctant," Mr Thew said.

"Convenience stores are becoming a thing of the past, but if it's located a reasonable distance from major centres there is no drama."



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