Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

News Archive December 2011

Wilsons takes over Grangers customer accounts 21 December 2011
Colchester wholesaler Wilsons is taking over the customer accounts of Wm Granger, the Leicester wholesaler which ceased trading last month.

GCA announces winners of Christmas display competition 20 December 2011
Castle Gardens in Sherborne, Dorset and Barton Grange Garden Centre in Preston, Lancashire to receive accolades at the GCA annual conference in Oxfordshire in January.

John Lewis posts record sales 19 December 2011
John Lewis has posted its highest-ever weekly sales figure for the week to Saturday, December 17, despite gloomy reports from other retailers on the high street.

B&Q vows to beat competitors on price in longest-ever winter sale 16 December 2011
B&Q has promised to beat any price on kitchens and bathrooms in its longest-ever winter sale, which will run from today up until the beginning of March.

Symphony Group shortlisted for sustainability award 16 December 2011
Kitchen, bedroom and bathroom furniture manufacturer Symphony Group has been shortlisted for the Sustainability Award recently launched by the Worshipful Company of Furniture Makers.

Robert Dyas chief exec steps down after five months 16 December 2011
The board of Robert Dyas Holdings Limited has announced that the retailer's chief executive Steve McVey has resigned from the company, less than five months after he was appointed to the role.

Abus teams up with Aldridge Security 15 December 2011
Abus has secured a national distribution agreement with Aldridge Security with effect from January 2012.

Christmas sales "on a knife edge", says BRC 15 December 2011
Footfall on UK high streets fell by 2.6% year-on-year last week, according to the latest BRC-Springboard Footfall Monitor.

Redundancies at Beverley Garden Centre 15 December 2011
Sixty employees have been handed redundancy notices at Beverley Garden Centre in Woodmansey, part of the Garden Centre Group.

Armed robbery at Frosts Garden Centre 14 December 2011
Employee bound and held at gunpoint, while assailant stole cash from the safe at Woburn Sands garden centre on Monday morning.

Mary Portas reveals high street rescue plan 14 December 2011
Mary Portas unveiled her independent review of the UK's high streets yesterday, with a set of 28 recommendations aimed at reviving our flagging town centres.

Home Hardware names Akzo Nobel Supplier of the Year 13 December 2011
Award was presented to Akzo independent business manager Nick Andrews in recognition of the paint firm's service to Home Hardware's distribution business at Pottington and Bedford.

Carpetright suffers profit loss in H1 13 December 2011
Carpetright has reported an £800,000 profit loss in the first half of its financial year, as it continues to navigate a "very challenging trading environment".

Wickes' like-for-like sales drop 6.8% 13 December 2011
Wickes has reported a 6.8% decline in like-for-like sales for the past eight weeks, according to a trading update released by parent company Travis Perkins today.

Wickes opens first high street store 12 December 2011
Wickes has opened its first high street store in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, as part of its growing multichannel offer.

M&S introduces new online packaging management tool 12 December 2011
Home and fashion retailer teams up with The Less Packaging Company to launch Packspec as part of its Plan A commitment to reduce packaging on its general merchandise ranges.

Tesco launches boiler installation service 12 December 2011
Supermarket giant Tesco has launched a new boiler installation service in partnership with heating company Enact Energy.

Futuristic design wins Hartman UK competition 9 December 2011
Garden furniture company Hartman UK is set to put two new designs into production created by student designers from Birmingham City University.

Hunter Douglas acquires Integra 9 December 2011
Window coverings and architectural products manufacturer Hunter Douglas has acquired British company Integra for an undisclosed sum.

Planters sponsors national archery champion 9 December 2011
Planters Garden Centre has announced that Matthew Ingram, who is sponsored by the company, has been named the Junior Indoor National Champion for under 16s compound archery.

EH Smith wins display award 7 December 2011
Independent builders merchant EH Smith was the star in this year's Toolbank Christmas display competition.

Dog Rocks signs up with Solus 7 December 2011
Dog Rocks has announced a distribution agreement with garden products supplier Solus Garden & Leisure.

Retailers face £350m business rates blow 7 December 2011
Retailers will be hit by additional costs of £350m next year, says the BRC, after the Government confirmed a 5.6% uplift in business rates.

Superglass invests £6.5m in Stirling manufacturing plant 6 December 2011
Glass fibre insulation manufacturer announces it will commence a £6.5m capital expenditure programme at its Stirling manufacturing plant in March next year with completion scheduled for March 2013.

Homebase collects for Teenage Cancer Trust this weekend 6 December 2011
Homebase stores across the country are hoping to raise hundreds of pounds each for Teenage Cancer Trust in a national Christmas collection fundraiser this weekend.

November sees worst sales growth for six months 6 December 2011
Britain's high streets have seen the worst sales growth for six months, with sales values down 1.6% like-for-like last month compared with November last year.

Bishops Home Hardware named 'Retailer of the Year' 5 December 2011
Bishops Home Hardware in East Sussex has been named Home Hardware Retailer of the Year.

Like-for-like sales down 3% at Ikea 5 December 2011
Swedish home furnishings retailer Ikea has suffered a 3% dip in like-for-like sales for the year to August 31.

Walker Group buys Focus DIY brand 2 December 2011
MFI owner Walker Group has bought the Focus DIY brand from administrators Ernst & Young for a reported £300,000.

Christmas tree thieves caught in the act 2 December 2011
A trail of pine needles helped police catch three thieves in the act of stealing more than 100 Christmas trees from Notcutts Garden Centre in Pembury last week.

Profits up 20% at B&Q 1 December 2011
Retail profit at B&Q UK & Ireland grew by 20.6% to £46m in the third quarter of its financial year, according to a statement released today by parent company Kingfisher.


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