Opinion on Home Improvement and Gardening Supplies

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Type Product title / description Pub Price
CommentWire
CommentWire

Focus & MFI: merging struggling retailers rarely creates a stronger business

Apax Partners' proposal for a possible merger between Focus, the DIY retailer in which it has a 30% stake, and the retail arm of MFI for which it is currently bidding, is doomed to failure. While both retailers share similar difficulties, a viable retailer will not be created by joining the companies.

Published By Datamonitor
14 Jul 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Somerfield/Robert Dyas: first of its kind

The venture between Somerfield and Robert Dyas will be the first time DIY concessions have been given space inside UK supermarkets. With the DIY market set to pick up at the end of the year, the timing coincides with a full scale roll-out of the venture. However, both retailers will have to make sure that they get the product mix right to reap the benefits.

Published By Datamonitor
17 Jul 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Kingfisher: right move at the right time

Home improvement retailer Kingfisher is taking advantage of the current buoyancy in the direct property investment market in the UK to sell seven of its B&Q stores and lease them back at long term fixed rates. This should provide the retailer with much needed operational flexibility in the challenging DIY market as well as releasing cash to grow its business at a time when demand is weak.

Published By Datamonitor
18 Jul 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

MFI: no choice but to sell

MFI has endured a torrid year and its latest disappointing results prove that the retailer will need to take drastic measures to turn the business around. It is likely that the retail arm could be sold to one of three private equity firms that are currently circling the beleaguered retailer.

Published By Datamonitor
20 Jul 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

B&Q: a home improvement project

Kingfisher's UK arm, B&Q, has been severely impacted by the tough conditions plaguing the DIY market, while also facing stiffer competition from rivals. The planned refurbishment of its Warehouses, if executed properly, could enable B&Q to benefit from an upturn in the DIY market.

Published By Datamonitor
24 Jul 2006
Expert View
Expert View

Travis Perkins: solid foundations for growth

At last, some positive news from the home improvement sector, with Travis Perkins reporting an improved operating profit and market share gains in an extremely challenging market. While sales growth still proves elusive, Travis Perkins is in a confident mood with significant efficiency gains protecting margins and growth ambitions.

Published By Datamonitor
03 Aug 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Carpetright: rent relief

Carpetright's admission that rental inflation is beginning to slow is good news for the retailer but it does not necessarily mean that all retailers are likely to experience the same trend during the coming months. The majority of Carpetright's stores are located in bulky goods retail parks and it is here that that rental cost inflation is likely to slow, and not on prime retail park sites.

Published By Datamonitor
09 Aug 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

MFI: new start for retail arm, but tough times still to come

MFI's retail division has been one of the most high profile casualties of the furniture sector having suffered from a relentless slide in sales and persistently weak margins. Merchant Equity Partners should give the retail chain a fresh start with new management, taking an ax to its store portfolio and reduce the company's high cost base, but this will be no easy task.

Published By Datamonitor
17 Aug 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

UK retail sales: volume down, but value up

New data from the UK's Office of National Statistics reveals that the value of retail sales in July was up 3.4% year-on-year. This data should be interpreted positively, but a media focus on month-on-month volume trends means it is unlikely to be.

Published By Datamonitor
17 Aug 2006
CommentWire
CommentWire

Lowe's/Home Depot: tough times ahead

Home improvement is one of the retail sectors most vulnerable to an economic slowdown, or even just a drop in consumer confidence. While Lowe's is currently performing well, Home Depot's diversification strategy should offer it a greater degree of stability if the sector slows.

Published By Datamonitor
22 Aug 2006

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