PetO acquires 66 stores and vet clinics in landmark expansion

Sydney-based pet chain PetO has received approval from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for its acquisition of more than 60 new stores and vet clinics. This landmark move will establish PetO as a major third player in the pet retail industry, alongside market leaders Petbarn and PETstock.

Transaction snapshot

  • Deal value: Undisclosed
  • Deal multiples: N/A
  • Deal type: Acquisition of 41 retail stores and 25 vet clinics
  • Investors: PetO (acquirer)

Under the deal, PetO will absorb the Best Friends, Our Vet, My Pet Warehouse and Pet City brands, expanding its footprint from 17 stores in the Sydney region to 58 stores across much of the country. The acquisition also includes 25 veterinary clinics, which will continue to operate under the Our Vet brand.

The ACCC approved the deal following PETstock and Woolworths' agreement to divest the same 41 stores and 25 vet clinics that PetO has now acquired. This decision came after claims of anti-competitive behaviour when PETstock originally bought those stores without notifying the ACCC. Woolworths bought a 55 per cent stake in PETstock in December 2023 for $586m (now revised down to $438m following this divestiture). 

PetO, founded by brothers Nick Greenhalgh and David Rowe in 2006, expects the acquisition to triple its revenue to approximately $200 million in the next financial year. The company's staff size will also increase tenfold from just over 100 to around 1,000 employees.

"Australia is right now experiencing record levels of pet ownership and increased demand for pet products," said Greenhalgh. "We couldn't think of a more exciting time to be expanding across the country."

The acquired stores will operate under their existing brands during a transitional period as they are integrated into the PetO umbrella. Greenhalgh emphasised that existing staff will be retained, stating, "We respect these brands, they have worked hard to develop strong recognition and their people are experts in their field."

The pet retail market in Australia has seen significant growth, with Australians spending an estimated $33 billion on pets in a single year. This trend has attracted the attention of major retailers, including Bunnings Warehouse, which launched its own pet range last March.

PetO's acquisition comes at a time when the company is well-positioned to capitalise on the increasing demand for pet products and services nationwide. The expansion will allow PetO to bring its commitment to quality customer service and expert advice to a broader customer base, solidifying its position as a key player in the Australian pet retail industry.

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