More than 20 employees are set to lose their jobs when Hawera's Mitre 10 shuts its doors at the end of this month.
Mitre 10 acting chief executive Grant Fraser said the job losses of 17 fulltime and four part-time staff is tough for a "tight-knit community".
"We are looking to temporarily retain some staff to ease through the closedown period, with a final closure planned for the end of September," Mr Fraser said.
Mitre 10 told the Daily News that the losses it suffered over the years, because of a "number of factors", have left them with no other choice but to close.
"Regrettably that does mean job losses in Hawera," Mr Fraser said.
"A huge effort has been put in to the store since we took ownership in 2011 so everyone is disappointed."
Mitre 10 is in Glover Rd, a short distance from its competitor, Bunnings. Another hardware store, Placemakers, is a four-minute drive from Glover Rd.
When Mitre 10 first bought the store from Taranaki Farmers two years ago, they hoped it would help grow the brand's presence in New Zealand.
They were also looking to hire "half a dozen more staff"' on top of the 23 employees they had on their books.
There were plans to play a big part in the community, helping with fundraisers and supporting local events on a weekly basis.
Mitre 10 was also banking on its buying power to ensure customers get "the benefit of highly competitive prices".
Bizlink Hawera chairman Andy Beccard said he was disappointed to hear Mitre 10 was closing.
"We never like to lose a business," Mr Beccard said. "However, it's not easy out there and it's always going to be a challenge for the business after its main competitor undertook major expansion in town."
Mitre 10 have put in place an employment assistance programme to help their staff with CV writing and interview techniques.
They are also reviewing the possibility of relocating staff to nearby Mitre 10 stores.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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