Kingfisher opts for compact stores and downsizes big boxes

Kingfisher aims to increase its number of stores in the next few years while at the same time reducing the average size of the stores. Europe's second-largest DIY store group wants to open more compact stores on retail areas under 2 000 m². It intends to concentrate as a whole on medium-box stores on 2 000 to 6 000 m² sites and downsize some of its big-box stores, which currently operate on retail areas in excess of 8 000 m². According to the company's recently published full-year report 2020, "stores are a critical feature of the home improvement market". It continues: "The demand for speed and convenience is driving both the shift towards online in our industry, as well as the need for smaller and more localised stores." Initial tests with compact stores are already up and running. Two compact B&Q formats in Great Britain, two B&Q store-in-store concessions within Asda supermarkets, one Castorama high-street format under the Casto brand in France and one ultra-compact Screwfix called Screwfix Collect in central London. For downsizing overspaced stores, a number of B&Q and Castorama outlets have been identified. Their retail area is to be reduced by 30 per cent. Plans are in hand for German discount retailer Aldi to take over 30 per cent of the floor space of the B&Q store in Canterbury.