Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

News Archive July 2009

Tesco takes on Tricity brand 31 July 2009
Tesco is to launch an exclusive range of small domestic appliances under the familiar Tricity brand.

Wickes mops up sales left by demise of MFI 31 July 2009
Kitchens and bathrooms turnover revealed to be up 16.6% in latest interim statement, while merchanting sector continues to "suffer".

Wyevale changes its name 30 July 2009
The UK's largest garden centre chain, Wyevale has changed its name in what promises to be a massive re-branding exercise for the company.

B&Q launches furniture range 30 July 2009
Kingfisher-owned DIY chain invests £3.5m into home furniture range as it hopes to capitalise on the 'don't move, improve' trend.

David French to step down 30 July 2009
In a statement released today, following a meeting between Charles Harrison and BHETA president Andrew Weiss, the association confirmed the resignation of David French and Helen Hibbert and resolution of legal proceedings against Mr Harrison.

Obituary: Ken Blanks 29 July 2009
Ken Blanks, formerly of Blanks Wallpapers and Kabco Wholesale, died on July 21, aged 78.

Retailers struggle in summer but sales falls not as bad as expected 29 July 2009
CBI Distributive Trades Survey reveals that DIY, hardware and furniture retailers are among those affected as sales drop for the third month running.

Akzo Nobel's results beat predictions 29 July 2009
Price increases and cost cutting helps offset fall in sales volume and has positive effect on Dutch coating company's Q2 trading statement.

Clas Ohlson plans new store 28 July 2009
Swedish retailer signs contract for new branch in Kingston-upon-Thames.

Netto launches summer garden range 28 July 2009
Discount retailer announces exclusive range of summer garden equipment for limited period.

Outlook uncertain for HSS Hire 28 July 2009
DIY rental company in talks with lenders about the future of the business.

Belinda Barnard leaves Mica 27 July 2009
Belinda Barnard has resigned with immediate effect from her position as managing director of troubled buying and marketing group Mica.

'We have to work it out professionally' says BHETA president 24 July 2009
Members of the BHETA Board spent yesterday afternoon discussing the ramifications of the morning's EGM, which produced the extraordinary result of a split vote on the proposed merger.

BHETA merger vote: poll predicts a 'no' 23 July 2009
According to the current results of an online poll carried out by our sister site, today's vote over the formation of a "super federation" by BHETA members may not go in the board's favour.

B&Q parent sees strongest sales in UK 23 July 2009
Kingfisher has reported a 2% decline in like-for-like sales for the 10 weeks to July 11 but the UK has outperformed the group results.

Future uncertain after split vote at EGM 23 July 2009
The future of BHETA's proposed merger with the BJGF and its management structure hangs in the balance after voting at this morning's EGM was split down the middle.

A fresh approach to fundraising 22 July 2009
Wickes will raise money for Leukaemia Research this summer through the sale of car air fresheners at the point of sale.

Tendence numbers hit by downturn 21 July 2009
International consumer goods fair Tendence has reported 20% decline in the number of visitors to the show.

BRC offers 'rescue plan' for high streets 21 July 2009
Trade body warns of death of the high street unless action is taken.

MTD prepares for Wolf-Garten takeover 21 July 2009
Following official approval for its acquisition of Wolf-Garten GmbH, MTD is preparing for the takeover at the beginning of September.

Harrison hit with £10,000 costs over BHETA injunction 17 July 2009
BHETA member Charles Harrison, who is threatening to publish confidential association material, has failed in his bid to have the association's injunction against him lifted.

'If there's nothing to hide, publish the emails' Harrison tells BHETA 17 July 2009
BHETA member Charles Harrison yesterday demanded that the association's Board publish the confidential emails over which it has issued him with an injunction.

Pam Plant condemns BHETA's "bully boy tactics" 17 July 2009
Pam Plant, who recently resigned as BHETA housewares director, says the BHETA board has "gone too far" and urges members to vote in next week's EGM.

BHETA Board calls for focus 17 July 2009
In an open letter to BHETA members, the Board has urged people to keep sight of the issues ahead of next Thursday's egm and clarified its position in regards to the injunction against Charles Harrison and the emails in question.

On the record: Belinda Barnard 17 July 2009
Mica managing director speaks to DIY Week to explain the reasons behind the decision to place the company in administration last week.

Focus faces credit review 16 July 2009
DIY and garden retailer's credit facility to hinge on auditor's report

Ideal Standard acquisitions 16 July 2009
Ideal Standard International has announced the purchase of four subsidiaries of Irish firm Qualceram Shires for an undisclosed sum.

Mica suppliers get together 16 July 2009
More than 30 suppliers to Mica UK, which entered administration last week, took part in a conference call organised by BHETA DIY director Andy Vaughan yesterday afternoon.

Clas Ohlson sees sales soar in June 15 July 2009
Swedish hardware retailer Clas Ohlson has announced a 13% sales rise in June. However, sales in Finland and the UK rose 40% from SEK 30m to SEK 42m thanks to new store openings.

Sterling supports Britain's Best 15 July 2009
Security specialist Sterling has confirmed its continued support of Britain's Best Retailer Awards by sponsoring the Britain's Best Security Retailer category.

Caldwells Manufacturing enters administration 15 July 2009
Caldwells is the latest British brand to fall victim to the recession with the news that the tool manufacturer entered administration last Wednesday.

City predicts better times for DIY 14 July 2009
Investors encouraged to buy Kingfisher stock

Today: telephone conference for Mica suppliers 14 July 2009
The British Home Enhancement Trade Association (BHETA) has organised a telephone conference for both members and non members affected by Mica going into administration, to obtain some practical advice and, hopefully, an update from Mica's administrator.

Gardenex offers more opportunities abroad 10 July 2009
Export federation to represent members at trade shows in the USA, Spain and Italy.

Crafty new TV series 10 July 2009
New reality programme to get the public back to basics with traditional and contemporary crafts.

Pam Plant joins Spring and Autumn Fair 10 July 2009
Ex-BHETA housewares director takes up key new role

Customers reveal their ideal bathrooms 9 July 2009
Survey reveals customers' dream bathroom features, including underfloor heating, walk-in shower and even a bar with topless waitresses.

Mica enters administration 9 July 2009
Hardware buying and marketing group Mica entered administration last night citing the pressure of the recession. Stax Trade Centres will take over the wholesaling responsibility.

BHETA issues injunction over confidential emails 9 July 2009
The debate on our sister site regarding the proposed merger between BHETA and the BJGF continues to rage following news that the association has been granted a restraining injunction against member Charles Harrison to stop him from publishing confidential BHETA material that has come into his possession.

Chainsaws stolen in garden centre raid 8 July 2009
Police appeal for witness to burglary at St John's Garden Centre in Barnstaple.

Ikea owner warns of further job cuts 8 July 2009
Swedish retailer counts the cost of property slump

Footfall strong in June 8 July 2009
Synovate Retail Traffic Index (RTI) figures reveal UK shopper numbers fell marginally against last year, with June one of the best months of the year so far.

Exclusively visitors up 6% despite tube strikes 7 July 2009
Despite the recessionary gloom and a tube strike, last month's Exclusively Housewares delivered another good year for visitors and exhibitors alike, according to organiser Brooke House Exhibitions.

Exhibitors support Totally move 6 July 2009
Show organisers pleased at positive reaction to relocation of Totally Tools, DIY and Secure to Birmingham, with a number of exhibitors returning to show as a result.

Grafton Group sees further falls 3 July 2009
Builders merchant and DIY chain Grafton Group has released its trading update for the six months to June 30, and, as expected, the news isn't good.

GIMA raises more than £3,000 for Greenfingers Appeal 3 July 2009
Fundraising activities at annual Awards dinner sees garden retailers and suppliers dig deep for charity.

Further protests over proposed HRG bonus scheme 3 July 2009
More than 40% of Home Retail Group's shareholders refused to back the company's remuneration scheme, which could see directors rewarded up to 150% of their salaries in cash.

£7m Dobbies centre gets go ahead 3 July 2009
The environment minister has finally approved plans for a £7m Dobbies garden centre just outside Lisburn in Northern Ireland, four years after the initial application was submitted.

Carpetright sees profits drop 72% 2 July 2009
National floorcovering retailer Carpetright has announced a 72% slide in pre-tax profits for the 12 months to May 2.

GCA pulls plug on GRO buying group 2 July 2009
Associated Independent Stores (AIS) takes over GRO after the GCA was unable to generate a sustainable number of members for the scheme.

M&S home sales 'outperform market' 1 July 2009
Marks and Spencer trading statement reveals retailer performed better than expected in first quarter.

Plasplugs loses out to power dispute 1 July 2009
Refusal to connect electricity costs firm dear

Crown Paints enters into partnership with I-Plas 1 July 2009
Leading paint manufacturer teams up with Halifax-based company to see its waste material transformed into recycled building material.

Wolseley boss leaves with immediate effect 1 July 2009
Wolseley chief executive Chip Hornsby stepped down from the position yesterday after almost three years. He leaves with immediate effect.


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