Liverpool’s fast-growing discount retail chain, B&M, is allegedly in talks over a deal the buy up a number of Homebase DIY shops.
After floating on the stock exchange in June, B&M approached Home Retail regarding the purchase of a chunk of their retail presence through the acquisition of some of the 80 Homebase stores earmarked for closure over the next three years.
However, a deal has not yet been struck between the two companies, and other retailers have expressed an interest in taking over some of Home Retail’s sites after they announced streamlining measure last month.
B&M, chaired by Sir Terry Leahy (formerly Tesco’s chief executive) has been expanding rapidly amid growing demand, building on its strong Northern presence and recently eying up possible southern locations.
B&M will shortly report its maiden interim results as a public company and will no doubt be question about whether or not its rapid rate of growth is sustainable. The company holds more than 400 UK stores, as well as holding the JA Woll brand in Germany.
Former Asda property executive Karen Hubbard was appointed last month to lead B&M’s expansionary strategy that, at present, sees the chain opening approximately 50 UK stores every year.
Words: Peter Cribley