Michael Hill International Limited owns the brands “Michael Hill” and “Emma & Roe” and operates a retail jewellery chain of over 330 Michael Hill and Emma & Roe stores in Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United States as at June 2017.
The Michael Hill story began in 1979 when Sir Michael and his wife Christine opened their first store in the New Zealand town of Whangarei, some 160 kilometres north of Auckland. Since then, the company growth has been guided by a unique retail jewellery formula. Through dramatically different store designs, a product range devoted exclusively to jewellery and development of high impact advertising, Michael Hill Jewellers rose to national prominence. In 1987 Michael Hill International was listed on the New Zealand Stock Exchange, the same year the Group expanded into Australia.
In 2002, Michael Hill expanded into North America, opening its first stores in Vancouver, Canada. The Canadian presence now includes stores in British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Ontario.
The first Michael Hill stores opened in the United States in September 2008. There are now stores in Illinois, Ohio, Minnesota and New York.
Exclusive jewellery collections available at Michael Hill stores include Michael Hill Designer Bridal, Infinitas, Everlight and Spirits Bay (New Zealand only).
As at June 2016, there are 168 stores across Australia, 52 in New Zealand, 67 in Canada and 10 in the United States. There are also four Michael Hill online stores servicing each market.
Find Michael Hill store locations: Australia | New Zealand | Canada | USA
The first Emma & Roe by Michael Hill boutique was opened in 2014 after a successful trial during the preceding 18 months in five South East Queensland outlets under the trading name “Captured Moments”.
Emma & Roe is a new jewellery experience with a range of proprietary jewellery including charms, bracelets, rings, pendants and earrings that are interchangeable, offering limitless options to mix and match. The jewellery is fine quality made from 10 carat gold and sterling silver, and features an array of precious and semi-precious stones including diamonds, Murano glass, and other gems.
The name Emma & Roe takes its inspiration from the Hill family; “Emma”. Sir Michael’s daughter, and “Roe”, Christine Lady Hill’s maiden name.
As at June 2016, there are 15 Emma & Roe boutiques in Australia, 1 boutique in New Zealand with a further 12 stores planned to open during 2016-17. A dedicated Australian webstore ships across Australia, and a curated selection of Emma & Roe pieces are also available throughout Michael Hill stores and online globally.
MICHAEL HILL INTERNATIONAL TIMELINE
Michael Hill opened its doors for trading for the first time in Whangarei, New Zealand. Sir Michael's aim was to make jewellery buying less intimidating and more accessible to buyers. This was achieved by designing stores with larger, more inviting entrances and a modern feel of the Hong Kong gold markets.
The company listed on the New Zealand Stock exchange as well as expanding into Australia, opening 4 stores in Brisbane, Queensland.
In 2002, Michael Hill expanded into Canada, opening its first stores in Vancouver, British Columbia.
The Group moved its Support Centre to Brisbane, Australia, where all manufacturing and administration continues to be performed.
In 2008 the Company's success was recognised, with Sir Michael Hill winning Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year. In September 2008, the Company also entered the United States market, opening its first store in Chicago.
The Company further expanded and launched a new collection called “Infinitas”.
Michael Hill continued to expand its differentiated proprietary collections to span watches, diamond jewellery, charms, and engagement rings. Also this year, the Company invested in a new e-commerce platform as a focal point for digital marketing efforts in all four markets.
The Michael Hill Designer Bridal Collection is launched in North America. The collection is built around Sir Michael’s love of music and each engagement ring features a natural pink sapphire in the band.
The Company launched a new interchangeable jewellery brand – Emma & Roe – after a successful trial during the preceding 18 months under the trading name “Captured Moments”.
Sir Michael Hill is on hand to open the first Michael Hill New York City store at Queens Center. A second New York store is now open in Roosevelt Field.
The 300th Company store opens at Vulcan Lane – one of Auckland’s most iconic laneways. Take a virtual tour of the store here.
Sprits Bay launches in New Zealand – a collection designed by Christine Hill from the ring like form of Totoere shells, worn down by the elements.
The Company moved its primary listing to the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) with a secondary listing on the New Zealand Stock Exchange (ASX/NXZ Code: MHJ).
Now and beyond
Today the Michael Hill Group has over 330 stores, and employs over 2,400 permanent employees who are involved in retail sales, manufacturing and administration. It has approximately 4,000 shareholders, and has provided superior return to shareholders for over 25 years.
Michael Hill continues its aim to be the most people focussed Jeweller in the world. Our priorities for the 2017-18 financial year to build shareholder wealth are:
- To drive same store sales growth in all markets and for both brands of above 2%
- Open at least 10 new Michael Hill stores across all markets
- Continue to review the Emma & Roe brand and adjust the brand and offering
- To reduce the US operating losses and develop a viable model
- Branded collection sales to reach 18%
- Improved inventory management delivering increase in GMROI (gross margin return on investment) and stock turn
- Continue to develop the e-commerce business and grow to 2% of group revenue
- Continued information systems investment to migrate the organisation onto a highly integrated ERP environment