PetO snapping at heels of big dogs after scooping up forced divestments from Petstock

PetO snapping at heels of big dogs after scooping up forced divestments from Petstock

PetO founders Nick Greenhalgh and David Rowe.

Sydney-based specialty pet-care retailer PetO has become the third major player in the niche market nationally after scooping up divested assets from Petstock following a forced sale by the competition watchdog.

PetO has acquired 41 retail sites and 25 vet clinics to add to its existing 17 outlets in NSW, positioning the privately owned group as a serious competitor to market leaders Petbarn and Petstock.

The assets include the Best Friends, Our Vet, My Pet Warehouse and Pet City brands, all of which were part of Petstock which was forced by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to offload them in the wake of Woolworths (ASX: WOW) announcing last year it was buying a majority stake in the company for $586 million.

The Petstock operations have boosted PetO’s national footprint to 58 outlets in NSW, Victoria, Western Australia, Queensland and Tasmania.

PetO, which was founded by brothers Nick Greenhalgh and David Rowe in 2006, estimates the acquisition will triple its existing annual revenue to about $200 million in the next financial year.

The company also expects to grow its workforce tenfold to 1,000 as part of the expansion, which will see existing staff from acquired stores retained and the support team expanded.

PetO plans to continue to operate each of the newly acquired businesses under their existing brands during the transitional phase.

“We respect these brands, they have worked hard to develop strong recognition and their people are experts in their field,” says Greenhalgh.

“We are approaching the integration with curiosity and in consultation with the wider team, so we look forward to going on this journey together.”

PetO says the 25 vet clinics, operating under the Our Vet brand, will continue to offer specialised in-house services and products to pet owners in Queensland, Victoria, and NSW.

Greenhalgh notes the acquisition comes amid “record levels of pet ownership and increased demand for pet products”.

“We couldn’t think of a more exciting time to be expanding across the country,” he says.

“At PetO, we think of ourselves as the cat and dog specialists. We know your furry friend is more than just a pet, they’re a member of your family - that’s why our business is centred around exceptional customer experience and expert advice.

“We’re thrilled to bring PetO ‘s passion for pets to new customers nationwide.”

Petstock, Australia’s second-largest specialty pet retailer, sold the businesses to PetO via a court-enforceable undertaking.

The move was prompted by Woolworths beefing up its foothold in the $10 billion Australian pet-care sector by acquiring a 55 per cent stake in the company.

The ACCC raised concerns that consolidation within the sector in recent years had lessened competition and it was particularly focused on acquisitions by Petstock between 2017 and 2022 that it says may have breached competition rules.

Petstock operates 270 outlets nationally, and while Petbarn has about 140 stores, it is part of the Brisbane-founded Greencross group which also owns 130 veterinary practices and more than 200 pet specialty stores nationally.

The former ASX-listed Greencross is owned by private equity group TPG following its $675 million takeover and delisting in 2019.

Enjoyed this article?

Don't miss out on the knowledge and insights to be gained from our daily news and features.

Subscribe today to unlock unlimited access to in-depth business coverage, expert analysis, and exclusive content across all devices.

Support independent journalism and stay informed with stories that matter to you.

Subscribe now and get 50% off your first year!

Four time-saving tips for automating your investment portfolio
Partner Content
In today's fast-paced investment landscape, time is a valuable commodity. Fortunately, w...
Etoro
Advertisement

Related Stories

“Not our desired outcome”: Telix withdraws from $300m Nasdaq IPO

“Not our desired outcome”: Telix withdraws from $300m Nasdaq IPO

Telix Pharmaceuticals (ASX: TLX), one of the nation’s largest...

CommBank joins new ‘intelligence loop’ to combat SMS phishing scams

CommBank joins new ‘intelligence loop’ to combat SMS phishing scams

In an effort to reduce the number of SMS phishing scam victims...

Stralis Aircraft secures funding to make commercial hydrogen planes a reality

Stralis Aircraft secures funding to make commercial hydrogen planes a reality

Brisbane-based Stralis Aircraft has become one step closer to its a...

‘Gone the long yards’: Luxury boatbuilder Maritimo a stayer in local manufacturing

‘Gone the long yards’: Luxury boatbuilder Maritimo a stayer in local manufacturing

In an era when Australia’s mass-production car industry is a ...