City the place for electronics giants

SAMSUNG's battle with Apple is moving to Melbourne's streets.

SAMSUNG's battle with Apple is moving to Melbourne's streets.

The global electronics giant is looking to lease a high-profile marquee store in a prime city retail location on Collins or Bourke Street ahead of its rival.

Apple has searched without success for a similar shop spot for years.

Samsung is also expanding its bricks and mortar presence in other Australian capital cities, a move sparked by its intense battle with Apple over consumer technology products and the success of its concept store in Sydney's CBD.

It has briefed at least five agencies on its requirements.

"The Sydney store is extremely busy, and they are looking at opportunities in Melbourne among other states to roll out," CBRE's associate leasing director, Max Cookes, said.

In Sydney the company occupies 213 square metres of space vacated last August by fashion brand French Connection at 450 George Street, its first major retail outlet in Australia.

But for Melbourne it wants double that size for a larger, more lavish store. The tech giant wants to lease at least 500 square metres with street frontage, ideally in the much-sought-after Collins and Bourke street shopping strips between Swanston and Elizabeth streets.

It is not the only international retailer moving to Melbourne.

The $1.16 billion Lonsdale Street Emporium due to open this year has attracted tenants such as Uniqlo, Top Shop/Top Man, Sass & Bide, Salvatore Ferragamo, Scanlon & Theodore and Zimmerman.

Apple's search in Melbourne has foundered on the difficulty of finding a large-enough space.

It requires at least 1500 to 3000 square metres of floor space for its purpose-built shop fitout where roving sales staff sell the latest technology must-haves.

Samsung's less onerous requirements were likely to be more successful.

"With a more flexible requirement they may find it a lot easier to secure a spot," Jones Lang Lasalle retail leasing director Jaycen Willox said.

Options include the new Emporium and Australia on Collins building.

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