Travis Perkins to sell plumbing and heating business

Travis Perkins, the Northants headquartered builders’ merchant, says it is looking to sell its plumbing and heating division in order to save £20-30m a year.

The news comes after the company announced a strategic review in July.

The company says it wants to “drive stronger performance and enhanced value for shareholders over the medium term” and will “focus on delivering best in class service to trade customers through businesses with clear competitive advantages in their markets”.

To do this, Travis Perkins says it will review the options for maximising value in its Wickes brand and concentrate on its general merchanting and Toolstation brand.

John Carter, chief executive, said: “We have developed a clear plan to focus on delivering best-in-class service to our trade customers, and to simplify the Group to reduce complexity, speed up decision making and reduce costs. Our trade businesses hold strong positions in attractive markets, and these initiatives will enable us to concentrate our management time and capital in the highest returning areas.

“Our strong balance sheet and free cash flow generation, driven by growing earnings and lower capital expenditure, will underpin our commitment to drive shareholder value and a progressive dividend.”