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Buyers begin to circle Homebase

Bunnings St Albans 725 x 500

It has been reported that private equity firms Endless, Hilco and Lion Capital are among the interested parties circling Homebase ahead of its sale by Australia's Wesfarmers.

Discount retailer B&M is also understood to have expressed an interest in the beleaguered DIY chain, according to the Press Association.

Wesfarmers acquired Homebase in January 2016 for £340 million, having commenced discussions with Home Retail Group in September 2015.  Before the ink was even dry on the contract, Wesfarmers had decreed that it would be re-branding Homebase stores as Bunnings - its DIY chain in Australia - and, within days of the completion of the deal, had removed the majority of the senior management team.  This action was swiftly followed by Wesfarmers' decision to take an axe to the remaining management team and other senior members of staff. 

The first Bunnings-branded store opened in February 2017 and a succession of refits followed, but half-year results for Homebase in 2018 showed that losses had grown to £97 million, having dropped from a £28 million loss in the previous year.

Wesfarmers has blamed the poor performance on a combination of 
“rapid re-positioning” of Homebase and challenging UK trading conditions.  

Last month, Wesfarmers confirmed it was undergoing a review of Homebase which could result in 40 store closures and 2,000 job losses.

We will update the Insight DIY website and social media channels as we learn more.

Source : Insight DIY Team

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06 April 2018

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