Homebase returns to profit and debuts new store format

Homebase has revealed a return to profit 18 months ahead of plan, as its turnaround plan pays off.

The retailer reported £3.2 million profit for 2019, compared to a £114.5 million loss in 2018. For its full-year financial results ending 29 December 2019, Homebase like-for-like sales were up 2.6% thanks to an expanded product range and £10 million invested into stores to improve customer experience. Over 50 stores were refurbished featuring inspirational kitchen showrooms and home furnishing departments. There are now 49 Bathstore concessions inside Homebase stores following the acquisition last year.

Nearly the entire fleet of 164 stores are now profitable, according to the retailer.

Meanwhile, “hundreds of improvements” were made to the retailer’s website over the last year, leading to a 50% increase in eCommerce sales. Over half of customers now start their shopping journey online at Homebase. The retailer has plans over the next year to build a marketplace where consumers can shop from an additional 18,000 products. Next- and named-day delivery will also be available from next month.

“Eighteen months into our turnaround, we’re extremely proud of what our team has achieved, working hard with our partners to return to profit and lay solid foundations for growth,” said Damian McGloughlin, CEO of Homebase.

“We have a very clear vision for Homebase, and we’re excited about the plans we have for the future. We will continue to invest in our ranges, services and team members as we make Homebase the go-to place for the inspiration, expertise and products customers need to take their ideas and create homes they love.”

This year, Homebase plans to open two small-format stores in Cheadle (4,061 sq ft) and Sutton (2,665 sq ft), which will focus on DIY decorating projects. The trial stores will be called Decorate and will offer customers products including paint, brushes, flooring and tiles.