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Homebase closes Wiggle concessions

Wiggle Homebase concession

Wiggle is closing all of its concessions in Homebase stores this month despite it previously revealing it had plans to roll out more.

In an email to customers, the cycling and tri-sports etailer said it was closing the Wiggle Workshops with “massive regret…due to circumstances outside of our control”.

The Milton Keynes and Cambridge stores will close tomorrow, while the St Albans store is expected to shut a week on Saturday (October 10).

Wiggle told customers were “no plans to reopen but we are working hard to fill the gap”.

It is understood the changes have come about as new Homebase boss Echo Lu reassesses the store estate and phases out non-core concessions.

A Wiggle spokesman said: “The news from Homebase to close their concessions has come as very disappointing to Wiggle, we have been delighted with the success of the Wiggle Workshops.

“Wiggle has been investigating opportunities to grow the workshop proposition on a wider scale and we look forward to sharing our plans in the near future. We would like to thank Homebase for the opportunity and wish them the best for their new strategy.”

The Wiggle Workshops, which are the retailer’s first physical presence, offer bike service and repair, click-and-collect and returns services.

When Bridgpoint acquired Wiggle four years ago, the firm’s then chief executive Humphrey Cobbold said “large-scale” destination stores were planned. However, these have so far failed to materialise.

Expansion plans

Retail Week revealed in May that the etailer was planning to expand its physical presence by opening two workshop concessions in Homebase stores later this year.

Homebase has been pursuing a strategy of opening concessions into its warehouse stores to fill excess space.

Flooring specialist Carpetright also has concessions in Homebase stores, while Homebase owner Home Retail is rolling out its Argos and Habitat brands into Homebase stores.

Homebase is also in the process of closing one in four stores as it seeks to adapt to a drop off in DIY among the younger generation and the growth in online shopping.

Source : Matthew Chapman & James Wilmore - Retail Week

02 October 2015

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