Multi-channel hardware and DIY tools supplier Screwfix is opening its first stores in Northern Ireland, creating 50 new jobs.
Three stores - Ballymena, Belfast and Newtownabbey - opened on January 13 and the final store in Bangor will open on January 27. Employees for each store have been recruited from the local areas.
The launches are the latest in Screwfix's increasing store network, which now includes more than 300 stores across the UK
. The retailer said the new stores will bring its expertise and functional product range to Northern Ireland's tradesmen and DIY enthusiasts, stocking thousands of tools, accessories and hardware products under one roof.
Ceo of Screwfix, Andrew Livingston, said: "We are excited to be launching our first stores in Northern Ireland, giving local tradesmen, handymen and serious DIYers the chance to purchase products at a time and place that suits them. Customers in the area have been shopping online at Screwfix.com for many years, and we are delighted to now be able to offer them the Screwfix store experience for added convenience and speed."
In addition, qualified plumbers and electricians can also take advantage of the exclusive Plumbfix and Electricfix trade counters in each store to access select products and offers. The Screwfix Click & Collect service and mobile and tablet apps can also be used for customers to collect from any of the four new stores.
At the end of November, Kingfisher announced that Screwfix sales were up 21% for its third quarter
, and nine outlets were opened during the period.