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Real Aotearoa - NZ Post's Real Deal For Tourists

29 November 2006

Real Aotearoa - NZ Post's Real Deal For Tourists

Image from Auckland store

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A Maori proverb on the wall, a sleek high concept storefront, discreet lighting illuminating glistening quality New Zealand designware and art, and eye catching black and white packaging.

This is Real Aotearoa; a new take on the traditional Stamps and Collectables business of New Zealand Post. Two Real Aotearoa stores are now targeting well heeled visitors by providing a one stop shop for sending New Zealand made gifts overseas.

Located in the centre of Auckland's tourist rich Queen Street, and Christchurch's busy Cashel Mall, Real Aotearoa stores offer authentic New Zealand made arts, crafts and designware, in a conspicuously high concept retail environment.

New Zealand Post stamps general manager Ivor Masters says the idea is a simple one that seemed a logical progression of the Stamps and Collectables business.

"This is quite a change of direction. We needed to look at where we wanted to take this business and exploit opportunities that were coming up."

Those opportunities arose when the Downtown PostShop in Auckland and Cathedral Square PostShop in Christchurch relocated earlier this year, giving his team the chance to re-evaluate their focus and take advantage of increasing tourist numbers.

Mr Masters says tourism has been identified as a key growth area, particularly in Auckland and Christchurch.

"We wanted to take advantage of the strong interest visitors have in buying collectables that reflect the country they are visiting. Real Aotearoa's distinctive name and look clearly establishes its country of origin.

"The use of our national colour black, and Maori motifs and design ensure customers, and whoever receives a gift from one of our stores, know they have a gift that clearly comes from New Zealand."

He says customers have the added bonus of being able to take advantage of the specialist advice store staff can offer as to the best way to send a product.

Mr Masters says traditional customers like stamp collectors aren't being ignored in these new stores.

"Stamp collectors are a discerning audience. They know what they want. Those who visit our retail centres have very specific product requests which tend to be filled from stock behind the counter rather than items on display in the front of the shop," he said.

"Without losing these existing customers, we needed to diversify our retail model to attract new customers, with exciting product ranges displayed in a fresh way. And obviously we launched the stores at this time of the year to take advantage of the busy Christmas and summer seasons."

More Real Aotearoa stores are likely to open in other parts of the country says Mr Masters.

"The business model allows for an increase in outlets, so watch this space."

ENDS

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