Country department store sold to Chemist Warehouse interests

The Prince Street site spreads 863 square metres.

Interests associated with Chemist Warehouse, as part of a consortium, have snapped up another prominent retail investment – this time in the Northern Rivers town of Grafton.

The Grafton asset includes a retail tenancy, two offices and two storerooms.

The ex-Mackelly’s department store at 45-49 Prince Street – opposite a crossing to Grafton Shoppingworld – contains 1228 square metres leased to three tenants including Cotton On which pays the bulk ($160,000) of the $175,000 annual income.

Longer term, Chemist Warehouse, which is the subject of a float, is expected to move in; the retailer presently leases the neighbouring store which, like #45-49, is oversized and two storey.

Interests associated with Chemist Warehouse recently purchased a Glen Waverley investment.

Company owners individually or as syndicates have over the last 36 months been bullish backers of High Street style shops especially near properties rented for the business.

Last December, one paid $2.72m for a Forest Hill outlet it occupied.

National Retail Group’s Michael Spektor in all cases represented the buyer.

First sale

The $4.1 million price for 45-49 Prince St reflects a 4.3 per cent yield.

It was also $2m over reserve (story continues below).

Ray White TKG’ Jake Kroehnert acted for the seller, J & JF Kelly Pty Ltd, owned by the Kelly family which operated a business out of the property until early 2011.

“The building is very iconic to the history of the Clarence Valley and had been in the family since it was constructed in 1936,” he said.

“This building was always referred to as the Mackelly’s building to Grafton locals, as the Kellys ran an independent country department store called Mackellys for 97 years,” he added.

“The business started in a neighbouring town before moving to Prince St,” according to the executive.

Three suitors registered for the February 4 auction. Two bid.

Zoned B3 Commercial Core, the site spreads 863 sqm.

Grafton Shoppingworld, owned by the McConaghy Group, is anchored to Big W and Woolworths.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of