Visit our store

Since HICKEYS first opened for business in 1935, our store has grown into an iconic sports & outdoors retail destination.
You can check out our full range of gear by visiting us in the Eastern Bay of Plenty coastal town of Opotiki or contact us :

info@hickeys.co.nz
07 315 6238

Hickeys

About Us


The HICKEY Story – from Hairdresser of the 1930’s, to Multi Store of 2015
A visit to ‘TIM HICKEYS’ 75 years ago would have been quite a different shopping experience to what it is today. You could have been treated to a ‘short back & sides”, a shampoo or to a soothing face massage or even had a close shave with a cut-throat razor. You may also have purchased hair cream or other toiletries, had you favourite tobacco weighed and blended to your requirements, or even indulged in an imported cigar for Christmas.
Today the TIM HICKEYS of 1935 has evolved into a modern retail destination made up of essentially ten mini-stores all within the same business under the one roof and still run by the original Hickey family.

At the age of 27, Tim Hickey senior started business in Opotiki as a Hairdresser & Tobacconist in a small barber’s shop saloon which he rented at the southern end of the town. A bigger shop was soon required so in 1939 he, along with three other business men, purchased four adjacent plots of land from the Bank of New Zealand property and built a new shops in the Opotiki town centre. This building at 116 Church Street became the home for TIM HICKEYS for the next 57 years.
A Growing Business
Business continued to thrive, the barber’s salon, tobacco & ancillary products were core business. The Best Bet race books, sports papers & Australian Tattersalls lotteries were also part of the mix, travel bags & luggage too, while a selection of sports and outdoor gear was introduced in the early 1940s. After returning from the WORLD War II Tim Hickey assisted by his brother Pat listed the business as the limited liability company(Opotiki Sports Depot Ltd) in 1938 and became a registered firearms dealer in the late 1940s. A resident barber was employed , allowing more time for him to concentrate on fishing, sports, hunting and the outdoors which became a much stronger focus for the business. Tim travelled to England by ship in 1948 to attend the Olympic Games, and while there arranged for the importation of a racket restringing machine through Brittain Wynard & Co. Today, 65 years later, HICKEYS still deal with that same New Zealand importer of major brands Daiwa, Asics, Coleman, Wilson & other products. Original fishing tackle suppliers R A Conaghans & Kelly, now Kilwell, are still key suppliers to Hickeys Few other stores in NZ have had that long-standing relationship.
Further Expansion
In 1953 his original store was doubled in size to cater for the ever increasing range of products …... especially surf and boat fishing gear which even included some of the Bay of Plenty’s first big game tackle, of which he was one of the Bay’s pioneers. Starcraft aluminium boats, seagull outboards and other marine gear became available. A small jeweller’s department had been established in 1951 and not long after an in store watchmaker from Holland was employed. The range included fine jewellery in gold, silver and pearl, barometers ,clocks and watches representing even the quality brands like Seiko, Omega and Rolex.
In 1977 the store was modernised – a new frontage and concrete floor, a redesigned interior fit out. With fishing and outdoor ranges again requiring more room, it was sadly the final days of the hairdressing saloon within the store, even though the Beatles & long hair was the fashion! It was the end of an era for Hickeys, though the tobacconist side along with Golden Kiwi lottery agency continued for many more years... The store was still called TIM HICKEYS.
New Location
The next major milestone was reached when the Farmers Trading Co closed their store in Opotiki at the end of 1989. The Hickey family realised the potential of the large prime corner site occupied by Farmers and negotiated a lease on the building in July 1990 from the new owner Mr Mick McKay of Opotiki. A decision was also made to separate the business into two more specialist stores. The Sports and Outdoors sections moved into that prominent, historical 600 sq metre building and as HICKEYS SPORTS – whilst the Jewellers, trophies & engraving, luggage & gift divisions remained at the original location operating as HICKEYS JEWELLERS.
With more room available in the new location, the range of Fishing & other outdoor gear was expanded, a cycling department established carrying Avanti & NZ made Worldrider bikes as well as a key cutting service were added to the in store offering. In 1990 major brands of sports clothing & footwear were introduced. Progressively this range was extended to include products found in surf & streetwear stores, including skateboards, surfboards & other accessories.
Destination Multi Store
In order to operate the expanding business more efficiently, the store was fully computerised in 1997 . At the time it was one of the first stores in the sports industry to install the modern Kudos retail POS computer systems, even ahead of similar stores located in big cities!
April 2007 was another business milestone for Hickeys with a decision to combine both the separate Sports & Jewellers divisions under the one roof as a destination multi-store, trading as HICKEYS Opotiki. Accordingly, the original store at 116 Church St including travel luggage, school bags and wallets was moved from the original Hickey building and incorporated into the present business site to further develop the one stop multi store concept. Opportunity also arose to include a range of guitars, ukuleles, strings & other musical accessories to respond to local demand.
In September 2010, the present store was further extended by another 120 square metres to enhance the camping and cycling departments, allowing more floor space for fishing, hunting and diving gear.
Online Presence
The most recent expansion has been in December 2014 to offer our first 24/7 catalogue and shopping online opportunity as another option for convenient access to our ranges for our customers both local and further afield.
The HICKEYS of today now occupies over 700 square metres of retail space, and is arguably one of the most unique and iconic independent stores in the Bay of Plenty in terms of its longevity, diversity, range of quality brands and competitiveness... its size per population base would rival any similar store in NZ, and is still owned and operated by the Hickey family under the leadership of Tim Hickey Junior for the last 29 years. 2015 marks the milestone of 80 years of retail in Opotiki.