Raromart owner Don Carlaw said the new shop, located beside CIPS/Jaycar Electronics, will be open to the public from early next week.
He said this shop would allow the business to keep on some of their 12 employees, who are currently without jobs.
“We will set up a smaller shop in Avatiu at the old Vaiora factory. We have already got stock coming up and we do have some stock left because some of the stock was stored off site,” Carlaw said.
“We will have to work on reduced margins of profit and this new shop is just to maintain the cash flow and keep the staff that we need.
“We will have items such as solar, fridges, freezers, washing machines, oven gas stoves – which we will sell for reduced prices.”
Carlaw said they have already opened the shop in a “limited way” and would be fully operational by Wednesday next week.
“We were using the site for this shop as a storage facility and we have to relocate those goods to another location, which we have identified, before we can open the store to the public.”
Carlaw was on his way to China to buy more merchandise when he heard of the store burning down. He said the fire came as a big shock to him.
The loss, he said, is estimated to be in the millions, with the building worth more than a million dollars and stock destroyed in the fire also worth more than a million.
Carlaw said the insurance company has been reasonable, but he was going to lose money because the company was under-insured.
“Not many people have their businesses insured to the real value,” he said. “They tend to, like we did, insure it for the book value, which leaves us a bit short.”
Carlaw said the Raromart employees were being offered jobs with other businesses, which he said he was thankful for.
He also said they were planning on rebuilding the megastore but it would take some time.
“We need to get the designs, building permits, the materials, and organise the builders – it’s a hell of a lot of work. We have lost a lot of information and it will be a huge task reinstating the original store.”
Carlaw thanked all those who have shared their grief and sympathy with him and his staff during this trying time.
“Everyone has been very sympathetic to us. We have had a lot of phone calls, emails and people have been asking if they can do anything to help us. We are grateful for the support.”
Police have been investigating the Raromart fire but have yet to publicly release any report on the ongoing investigation.