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Amazon front runner to acquire closing Homebase stores

Homebase closed store

Amazon is understood to have bid for a number of the 42 Homebase stores slated for closure according to the weekend's press.

Amazon is keen to expand its delivery network and with UK warehouse space currently at a premium, Homebase's out-of-town units present a viable alternative. Amazon ships millions of products to UK customers each year and offers a range of delivery options including one-hour to next day. In recent years, the company has found itself fighting with other internet retailers to obtain valuable warehouse space because developers have not built enough large industrial premises.

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Numbers and store details have not been revealed but Amazon is understood to have made 'aggressive' bids for the sites, which would help the company to grow its logistics business and fulfil more next-day and one-hour delivery services. Amazon acquired 4m sq ft of warehouse space last year, the equivalent of 63 football pitches and the locations of the Homebase stores tend to be in urban areas, ideal as 'last mile' collection points for local Amazon delivery drivers.

To see the locations of the 42 closing Homebase stores, click here.

It's understood that a further 71 Homebase stores are also under threat of closure, if the company is unable to negotiate lower rents through the current CVA proposal. The 71 stores, classed as 'amber' by the company will know their fate by the latest 1st November this year.

In recent years, sites offloaded by DIY retailers B&Q and Homebase have typically been taken on by discounters like B&M Bargains and The Range, so it will be interesting to see how hard these retailers will fight to expand their own store estates in the face of competition from Amazon. 

Source: Insight DIY Team

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19 August 2018

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