B&Q tests store format

B&Q is to test a new convenience format for its DIY stores – known provisionally as B&Q Express. The stores will offer DIY basics such as paints and tools, but are not likely to include kitchen and furniture ranges.

The Kingfisher-owned DIY chain has two store formats at present: the giant Warehouses and smaller Supercentres.

The Express format is likely to be tested in Aberdeen, where a new Warehouse opens next month. Instead of closing down the nearby Supercentre, B&Q plans to rebrand it as an Express.

“This is a defensive move. Closing down Supercentres when a Warehouse opens means rivals can gain market share,” says brokerage house Williams de Bre analyst Zak Keshavjee.

B&Q parent Kingfisher – which also owns Woolworths, Comet and Superdrug – has announced preliminary results for the year to January which show a 9.4 per cent fall in pre-tax profits to £281.5m.

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