Christie’s Direct, the Ballymoney based global market leader of pet grooming solutions, has opened a unique concept store in the town at Townhead Street.
The first of its kind in Northern Ireland, the flagship store hosted an official opening event last week. Stocking unique pet food, pet accessories and country gifts the store is pet friendly and incorporates a coffee shop, seminar venue and pet grooming education centre.
Managing Director, Colin Christie, took the opportunity to thank people who had helped make Pet & Country a reality in Ballymoney - Timothy and James Murray for the considerable investment in restoring the derelict building to its former glory, the development team who carried out the restoration work and all the team at Christie’s Direct who had went above and beyond the call of duty to organise the days events and make sure the store opened on time and was looking its best.
Commenting on the new concept store Colin said: “We are pleased to be expanding our operation in Ballymoney. Our business has grown in Ballymoney so what better place to locate our new flagship store, bringing a derelict building back into use, extending the town’s product offer and providing jobs.”
Speaking at the event Chamber President Winnifred Mellett said: “From an economic point of view the town is a source of employment and an outlet for enterprise. We want to see new opportunities to strengthen the towns retail and hospitality offer. We are indeed fortunate to have businesses like Christies Direct investing in our town. The opening of this new store sends a message of confidence to the investment community about our town.”
Council Development Chair, Cllr John Finlay, welcoming the new enterprise said: “We are working to enhance our town centre for residents, investors and visitors. We want our town centre to evolve to provide a contemporary mix of uses to enhance the shopping experience and encourage a thriving economy. Unique businesses like Pet & Country are a key part of what will contribute to our success.”
Christie’s Direct is a real success story. Established in 1992 selling livestock products it commenced selling pet products in 1998 with one employee. It now employs 30 staff and plan to increase to 40 within the next year. The firm, whose trading and export division, Christies Global, also have their offices and warehouse complex in Ballymoney, boosts 7,000 stock products, ship to over 30 countries worldwide, supplying professional groomers, multiple store suppliers, veterinary surgeons and foreign distributors.
The company boasts two UK Industry Awards for best pet product and best new grooming product and exhibits at Crufts. It is the first grooming company in the world to have an app listed in the Apple app store, while its website www.christiesdirect.com is the third most visited pet grooming website in the world.