JB Hi-Fi will no longer stock whiteware like fridges and dryers and is also closing its store in Auckland's Westgate Shopping Centre.

Chief executive Richard Murray said it would discontinue selling bulky appliances like fridges, dishwashers and dryers that were currently sold in four of its stores.

"As we do constantly across our stores, we move products around, we expand categories that are growing [and] we have identified other product categories where we think we have better growth opportunities," he said.

As a result, it would also not be renewing the lease on its small Auckland distribution centre.


"It's a third-party warehouse which was used to store large, bulky home appliances ... we don't require the additional storage."

No staff were employed to work exclusively at the distribution centre.

However, the JB Hi-Fi based in Westgate Shopping Centre would close down on August 6, affecting 24 staff.

There were 19 available redeployment opportunities at JB Hi-Fi's 15 other branches, Murray said.

"It's an unprofitable store and it's at the end of its lease," he said, adding that the company did not see an opportunity to return it to profitability.

"It's not uncommon for a retailer to close an unprofitable store."

He confirmed that affected staff had been given less than two weeks' notice but said they would be paid "well in excess" of minimum redundancy payment requirements should they not take up one of the 19 available jobs.

"This is a difficult time for the staff involved. I'm confident having spoken to all the people on the ground ... that we have handled this in as ethical, transparent and caring way as we can."

He declined to discuss any challenges the business, or the industry in general,
was facing but pointed to the company's February financial result.

"Our New Zealand business had sales decline 1.7 per cent but earnings were down about 50 per cent," he said. "New Zealand's a very, very competitive market."

The company's next financial results are due to be released on August 14.

"We have a plan over the next two years to improve the performance of our New Zealand business," Murray said.

"We think we're a solid number three to Harvey [Norman] and Noel Leeming and ... we see a number of store opportunities across New Zealand over the next couple of years as centres are built or redeveloped."

The company was not considering any further store closures at this point.