Travis Perkins faces decline in “challenging period”

trading performance was reported in the trade-focused businesses in General Merchanting, Plumbing & Heating, Contracts and Toolstation. However, TP said a

Wickes parent company Travis Perkins plc reported a 4.4% growth in revenue for the half year ended June 30, 2018. Like-for-like sales also grew, up 4.2% for the period. A good

“challenging UK DIY market” negatively impacted sales and profitability in Wickes. Cost reduction plans are currently in progress across the group, with benefits weighted towards the

second half of the trading year. Adjusted operating profits declining by 5.8%, primarily reflecting

sales mix, with

weaker Kitchen and Bathroom showroom sales in Wickes, and higher operating costs in General Merchanting. Travis Perkins

has warned

its full-year profits will be in the lower range of the half range of analyst

Squire’s Garden Centres buys Frensham Garden Centre

Independent garden centre chain, D. J. Squire & Co. Ltd (Squire’s) has announced the purchase of Frensham Garden Centre from Wheelhouse Warehousing for an undiscolsed sum. It was revealed the purchase completed on August 1 and, under the terms of the agreement, which was signed in early July, Squire’s will take over all the assets and business of the Garden Centre, and the Frensham team will become part of the Squire’s business.

Frensham GC is a well-known and successful garden centre located in Frensham, to the south of Farnham.

Commenting on the

purchase, deputy chairman of Squire’s, Sarah Squire said: “We are delighted to see Frensham Garden Centre and its excellent team joining the Squire’s group. We have great respect for what has been achieved over the years at Frensham and look forward to welcoming the Frensham as they become part of the Squire’s family business.”

Owner of Wheelhouse, David Wheelhouse commented: “I am happy to see the business that I have built up over many years, and the hard-working and loyal team members, become part of Squire’s. I have known the Squire family for many years and am confident that they will build on the firm foundations that we have created at Frensham Garden Centre.” Squire’s has recently had an ongoing roll-out of upgrades across its centres, from revamped cafes to complete refits.

L-R: Squire’s managing director Martin Breddy, deputy chair- man Sarah Squire, Wheelhouse owner David Wheelhouse, Squire’s chairman Colin Squire, Frensham Garden Centre manager Brian Phillips.

B&Q kicks off kitchens and bathrooms recruitment drive

Retail wages hit

five-month high According to the latest findings from the UK’s independent job board, CV-Library, average salaries for retail roles has hit a five- month high in July, and pay has increased by 1.1% month on month.

The job board explored data taken from its own site over the past seven months and found that salaries have grown consistently since March 2018. But, despite salaries for retail roles seeing positive growth, a separate survey from CV-Library found that nearly two-thirds of retail professionals believe that they are underpaid. Founder

and managing

director of CV-Library and, Lee Biggins commented: “As organisations struggle to find people to fill their vacancies, we’re seeing many businesses push up their pay packets, in a bid to attract the right people to their roles.”

Following a shake-up of its kitchen and bathroom sales process, DIY giant B&Q has now begun recruiting 800 new colleagues to its showroom areas The retailer says the move

“reinforces its commitment to the kitchens and bathrooms market”. It follows an announcement last month that it would be streamlining its kitchen

and bathroom sales process and would be scrapping its Homefit installation services.

B&Q explained the move away

from offering installation was based on customer preference. The chain, which offers 25 different kitchen models added that it would continue to focus on selection, design and ordering of new kitchens and bathrooms, for delivery and take-away.

As part of the new simplified

process, B&Q customers will only deal with one person in store, which the retailer believes will create greater efficiency and mean that the entire transaction, from booking a design appointment, to home delivery, can be done more quickly. All staff will continue to be fully trained on its interactive kitchen and bathroom design tool, B&Q Spaces.

B&Q trading director Paul White said: “B&Q is committed to the growth and development of the category. We are confident these improvements lay firm foundations to drive our showrooms business forward, and create

a solid platform

from which to continue evolving our market leading kitchen proposition. “With the addition of 800 colleagues,

new customers

will experience an even better service, dealing with just one member of staff who will make it simpler for them to buy a kitchen or bathroom and create an even better shopping experience.”

Crown Paints introduces 100% recycled plastic containers

Crown Paints has announced it is set to launch paint containers made from 100% recycled plastic – making it the first paint manufacturer in the UK to do so.

The plastic 2.5-litre and

5-litre containers, which will be available across Crown Paints’ retail range as early as mid- August, have been manufactured by packaging solutions expert Emballator, using 100% post- consumer waste (PCW) plastic for each container.. The paint containers are also

fully recyclable once empty and clean. With such sustainability credentials, the new paint cans are the ideal choice for today’s environmentally conscious consumers. Crown Paints


buyer Julie Entwistle said: “This marks a significant improvement to the plastic paint containers manufactured from 25 per cent recycled plastic which are currently available in the UK.”

10 AUGUST 2018 DIY WEEK 5 expectations, as

the company takes a hit from Wickes’


during a disruptive market. Travis Perkins CEO John Carter said: “Our trade- focused businesses in General Merchanting, Contracts, Toolstation

and Plumbing &

Heating achieved good sales growth, despite


a volatile first half. These businesses exited the period with

encouraging momentum and, supported by a continued focus on cost, they remain on track to deliver modest profit growth for the full year.

“Our consumer-focused business, Wickes, has had a far more challenging period as weaker consumer spending trends, combined with a difficult competitive environment, have held

back savings profitability.

Consequently, the Wickes team is executing a significant cost reduction programme. Whilst these

improved profitability

the second half of the year, Wickes’ profits will be lower than previously expected.”

will help drive through

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