Screwfix plans to open 15 new stores over next 12 months

The Company which owns Screwfix has announced it plans to open 40 new stores this year.

Kingfisher, the owner of the Somerset brand, added that the eventual aim is to have 1,000 Screwfix stores across the UK.

In France there are plans for up to 15 new stores planned for this year with the potential for more than 600 stores over time.

The announcement was made in the company’s annual results.

Kingfisher, which also owns B&Q, saw sales drop slightly to £12,980m.

Operating profit was down 20 per cent to £580m while pre tax profit fell by 22,3 per cent to £475m.

The company said it saw positive UK and Ireland sales, alongside consistent market share gains. France and Poland sales were impacted by a more challenging consumer backdrop.

Chief executive Thierry Garnier said: “Despite all the macroeconomic and consumer challenges in our markets over the past year, we have stayed focused on our customers and our long-term strategy.

“I am immensely proud of all our teams for their efforts. In the UK & Ireland, B&Q, TradePoint and Screwfix each delivered resilient sales and market share growth – in particular very strong gains at Screwfix. In France, where the market has been impacted by low consumer confidence, we have made significant adjustments to the cost base and started to embed e-commerce marketplace and trade customer initiatives similar to those successfully implemented in the UK. And in Poland, where we faced strong comparatives and a tough economic backdrop, sales trends are gradually improving in line with the consumer environment.

“We continue to execute against our strategic priorities at pace, with high conviction in our multiple growth opportunities. The success of our marketplaces in the UK and Iberia is well ahead of our expectations, with launches also planned in France and Poland this year. We have continued the international expansion of Screwfix, with 22 stores now open in France and encouraging results so far.

“Our trade proposition trials in France and Poland, as well as our data, AI and retail media initiatives, are also delivering positive results – encouraging us to accelerate their roll-out. We are also today outlining a new plan to simplify the French organisation and significantly improve the performance and profitability of Castorama France, which includes restructuring and modernising the store network.

“Looking forward, we remain confident in the attractive growth prospects of the home improvement industry and our ability to grow ahead of our markets. In the short term, while repairs, maintenance and renovation activity on existing homes continue to support resilient demand, we are cautious on the overall market outlook for 2024 due to the lag between housing demand and home improvement demand. Against this backdrop we will remain agile and focused on what is within our control – leveraging our strategy to deliver market share growth, driving productivity gains, and managing our costs and cash effectively.

“In line with this view, we reaffirm our medium-term financial priorities, focused on growth, cash generation and attractive returns to shareholders.”