Homebase to close 25 per cent of its stores following a review of the chain

DIY/garden centre chain Homebase is shutting a quarter of its 300+ shops by 2019.

Parent company Home Retail Group plans to cut the number of Homebase stores by 25 per cent by 2019, following a review of the chain, after reporting some are "unprofitable or are in decline" and standards that are "inconsistent". This means around 80 stores will close.

Homebase managing director Paul Loft is leaving, which HRG said was at an "appropriate time," following the review.

Seven stores have closed this year and another 23 will shut by the end of March.

Home Retail Group, also the owner of Argos, reported a pre-tax profit of £13.5m for the six months to August 31, a five per cent fall on the previous on the previous year. Homebase like-for-like sales rose 4.1 per cent.

Multichannel sales were up 12 per cent to seven per cent of Homebase's business.

Chief executive John Walden said Homebase would become smaller and stronger after a three-year productivity plan.

He has rejected stories that HRG will sell Homebase.


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