Sales of £100m forecast by Blue Diamond for 2017

Blue Diamond will hit £100m sales in 2017, up from £94m this year, helped by a focus on attracting high-demographic customers and making sure the plant and food offers are the best possible, managing director Alan Roper has said.

In areas such as books, moving from discounters to full-price, better-quality ranges is one area where aiming at a higher demographic is paying off, he explained. Blue Diamond sales splits are 18 per cent restaurant, seven per cent Christmas, five per cent fashion, nine per cent leisure, 16 per cent gardening, 18 per cent home, 21 per cent plants, five per cent pets/aquatics and two per cent other, making a 52/48 garden/non-garden split.

Blue Diamond will increase in size from 18 to 20 centres this month with the purchase of a Cambridgeshire centre and one north of that. Roper said high street retailing is "increasingly taking space in UK garden centres, threatening their core heart and soul. Garden centre customers seek escape from the high street experience. At Blue Diamond we operate non-gardening but retail in a way that has a softer image."

The Otley College-trained Roper, speaking from his horticulturist background and not as Blue Diamond managing director, said he sees "worrying signs that gardening/horticulture is being marginalised in some areas of the chain garden retail industry. "Thankfully the industry still has strong independents championing gardening although a few, not all, are treading the same path.

"As gardening authority wanes in these retailers, this opens the door of potential opportunity for the smaller garden retail nursery and good plant-based garden centres as keen gardeners look elsewhere for a credible gardening offer. We know as a group there is still good growth to be had in gardening. The growers benefit if stay true to our core."


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

What new vegetables will gardeners be growing in 2018?

What new vegetables will gardeners be growing in 2018?

Next year is Fleuroselect year of the chilli pepper and Thompson & Morgan and Mr Fothergill's have ranges around the hot vegetable, with a new way of promoting sales.

Garden centre building: what's going up?

Garden centre building: what's going up?

After a lull in new builds, 2018 could see a slight resurgence in garden centres being erected.

Retail seed: crowded market for 2018

Retail seed: crowded market for 2018

Thompson & Morgan is refocusing on the garden centre seed market, hoping to win back business from Mr Fothergill's, which has expanded during T&M's long sale process.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Horticulture Week Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES

Our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. 

Garden Centre Prices

Peter Seabrook

Inspiration and insight from travels around the horticultural world
 

Read more Peter Seabrook articles

Neville Stein

Business advice from Neville Stein, MD of business consultancy Ovation
 

Read latest articles