Clothing and houseplants top sales lists for garden centres in November

Clothing and houseplants were best sellers at garden centres across the country according to the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) Barometer of Trade (BoT) report for November 2019. Compared to the same month

in 2018, sales in clothing were up 15.92% followed closely by houseplants at 15.38% up. Iain

Wylie, GCA chief

executive commented: “It’s interesting to see non-traditional and traditional categories such

New chief customer and digital officer for Kingfisher

ecommerce the largest part of the business.

Prior to that, he built up expertise in leading technology, data, digital services and ecosystems, in the retail and home improvement sectors, including previous roles at Rewe, Travis Perkins, Tesco and Kingfisher, where he was group IT director from 2005-08. Van

Oosten is a Belgian

Kingfisher, the international home improvement company, has announced the appointment of Jean-Jacques (JJ) Van Oosten as chief customer and digital officer. Van Oosten joins most recently

from the Danish toy company, The Lego Group, where he was chief digital officer. At Lego Group, he has been leading their digital ambition to make

Bira teams up with EKM

Bira has teamed up with ecommerce specialist EKM to provide members with a trusted way to build an online presence,

while supporting

their bricks and mortar retail business. Preston-based EKM has helped over 80,000 businesses create

their own successful

online shop. Members who sign up will

receive everything they need to run a transactional website, including a domain name, secure servers, the ability to take payments using all major

national who speaks fluent English, French and German. He will be a member of the Group Executive team, based at Kingfisher’s head office in Paddington, and joins the business today. Thierry Garnier, CEO of Kingfisher, said: “JJ is an experienced digital leader with a track record of driving change in international companies. He has a key role to play at Kingfisher as we look to accelerate our digital and data capabilities and grow ecommerce sales.”

payment gateways and expert customer support. There are 150 customisable themes and with EKM, retailers can create a blog, a loyalty points system and submit products to Google Shopping easily. EKM’s Evolution Mode ensures the website never goes out of date, so the online shop stays in optimum condition. Additional

functions include

connecting with customers through Facebook Messenger and automating back-in-stock notifications to convert more visitors to repeat buyers. Users can handle all their website SEO with ease, benefit from PCI compliance and an SSL certificate. Bira members will also have their own account manager to help launch their online shop and answer any questions.

as clothing and houseplants doing well at the same time of year. Items of clothing make great Christmas gifts, so it looks like customers were stocking up. The weather also became much chillier during November, so customers were also wrapping themselves up warm with new togs.

“The rise in sales of houseplants coincides with the

introduction of festive

houseplants such as Poinsettias, Cyclamen and Hyacinths and it

looks like lots of customers were popping these in their baskets in order to bring some much- needed colour into their homes. “Of course, there’s no surprise at this time of year that gift sales were up 11.48% and general Christmas sales were up 13.4% as people prepared for the big day.”

Sales in pets and aquatics departments were also up at 13.84%. Catering sales were up 10.54% and food hall and farm shop sales were up 8.26%.

Seed and bulb sales were up 3.97%, garden sundries sales were up at 5.26%.

Wylie added: “Outdoor plant sales were down

by 5.82%,

furniture and barbecue sales were down 10.61% and hard landscaping sales were down by 19.3%, but this is to be expected thanks to the time of year and the weather.”

Overall though, sales for the month of November were up 8.63% with a year to date change of 5.99%.

Bord na Mona announces name change to The Greener Gardening Company

Bord na Mona has announced that the UK retail arm of the business will change its name to The Greener Gardening Company, effective from 1 February 2020.

The name change encapsulates all retail customers that trade with Bord na Mona Horticulture, Bord na Mona UK and White Moss Horticulture. The company continues to be a wholly owned subsidiary of Bord na Mona Ireland.

2020 is set to be a big year for the business. The company recently announced a new peat- free range of products, Happy Compost, which received a ‘best in test’ performance against all major competitors in trials conducted at University College of Dublin, Ireland. In 2019 the company also added three new Which? ‘best buys’ in the latest compost trials which rigorously test and review over 25 products with each formulation assessed

based on its quality and assurance.

The name change does not

affect the current Bord na Mona Horticulture business in Ireland or UK based trade customers that trade with Bord na Mona Horticulture in Ireland.


@kingfisherplc We’re excited to announce we’ve joined @stonewalluk Global Diversity Champions Programme to promote inclusive workplaces for all and we’ve been commended at the Rainbow Honours Awards.

British Garden Centres acquires

Hillview Garden Centre British Garden Centres has announced that they have completed the acquisition of Hillview Garden Centres (HGC) from The Hillview Group.

The transaction included both the operational business and portfolio of eight garden centres of HGC. This latest acquisition brings the total number of stores in British Garden Centres to 57, making them the second largest garden centre group in the UK. British Garden Centres have undergone an impressive expansion

programme, growing from 10 centres in 2018, acquiring 39 ex-Wyevale sites over the past few months and now adding Hillview centres. Hillview Garden Centres has been run for the past eight years by Boyd Douglas-Davies who will be taking up a senior role at British Garden Centres with immediate effect The centres have been trading under the British Garden Centre

umbrella since late-September under an agreement with Hillview Group that was designed to ensure the business made the most of the Christmas trading period. The approach has already paid dividends with the centres reporting sales up on the same period last year.

@Wickes Our new kitchen brochure is out now, packed with brand new ranges for 2020. Take a look at the range online and order your free brochure today

@ToolstationUK EXCLUSIVE – the Maverick range is only available at Toolstation

@Glee_Birmingham Glee will be back at @SpringAutFair on 2-6 February 2020


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