Kmart has confirmed it plans to open a store in Griffith, with more than 100 staff expected to be hired.
The news comes two months after Big W announced it would close on April 15.
A Kmart spokeswoman confirmed the news in a statement on Tuesday morning.
“We are excited to formally announce that Kmart Australia will be opening in Griffith in late 2018 and we will begin recruitment for more than 100 team members over the coming months,” she said.
“We thank the community and look forward to opening our doors and celebrating our everyday low prices”
The location or size of the new store has not yet been confirmed.
The news comes after months of rumours and whispers staff had already been hired and trained for a new store in town.
A poll conducted by The Area News shows some 67 per cent of respondents prefer Kmart to Big W.
Big W’s final day of trading is scheduled for April 15.
A spokeswoman for the company confirmed they were meeting with staff to explore options, including the option of redundancy for permanent team members and relocation to other stores and Woolworths brands.
Big W thanked the community for their support over the last few decades.
“The local community in Griffith have been valued and loyal customers since 1978 and the BIG W team have thoroughly enjoyed being part of the residents’ daily lives.”
The response from the community was mixed.
Annette Buchan comes from Leeton once a fortnight specifically to shop at Big W.
“I’m just absolutely shocked. We’ve only just heard. We’ve got nothing. I can’t believe it,” she said.
“It’s very frustrating because you always feel like you’re left out because of where you choose to live. I wonder what is going to replace it.”
She hopes to see a Kmart or similar store replace it.