A recent decision in the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has examined whether a premises primarily used for the production, packing and storage of goods sold online fell within the definition of ‘retail premises’. In Bulk Powders Pty Ltd v Seicon Pty Ltd [2018] VCAT 2000, the tenant used the property in question to create and store health supplements that it mostly sold online, however customers also had the option of picking up their products from the premises itself. Notably, only about 5% of sales were conducted in this way. Whether the property was being used for retail purposes was a key issue, as the lease in question specifically stated that the tenant could ‘produce, package and store online health supplements (not retail).’

Ultimately the VCAT held that the premises was not being used for a retail purpose. Weight was given to the fact that generally the premises was not open to the public, and there was no advertising or signage indicating the property was a retailer.

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