DIY chain Homebase has bought ailing bathroom specialist retailer Bathstore, to strengthen its bathroom offer to customers.
The purchase of 44 Bathstore stores, website, intellectual property and stock was made by Homebase Rooms Ltd – a company which was formed on July 10 with Homebase CEO Damian McGloughlin and Homebase chief financial officer Andrew Coleman as its sole directors.
The plan is to open a significant number of Bathstore concessions in Homebase stores over the next 18 months. Bathstore’s strong online business will continue to trade independently from the Homebase website.
Bathstore, which was once part of Wolseley UK, called in administrators last month putting more than 500 jobs at risk. BDO LLP, the company handling the administration, said the remaining stores that are not being transferred to Homebase as part of the sale will continue to trade for a number of weeks while remaining display stock is sold off.
BDO business restructuring partner Ryan Grant said: “In a difficult situation, we have been able to secure the future of the Bathstore brand and the transfer of 44 stores to Homebase to maximise realisations for creditors and protect as many jobs as possible.”
Homebase CEO Damian McGloughlin said: “We are absolutely delighted to welcome Bathstore into the Homebase family. With a reputation for quality service and excellent products, Bathstore complements Homebase’s reinvigorated range.”
“Since the launch of our turnaround plan just over 12 months ago, we have been focusing on reintroducing the popular ranges and products that our customers have been crying out for. Through strong cost management and improved shop keeping we are committed to making Homebase the best place to shop for everything you need for your home and garden projects.
“As a result of the hard work of the Homebase team, our turnaround is ahead of plan. While we still have a significant amount of work to do, the customer response to our new ranges has been very encouraging and we are on track to break even this year against a loss of over £100m last year.”