Breaking: Homebase announces second store closure in Bedford

MBTC Homebase Goldington Bedford
MBTC Homebase Goldington Bedford

Homebase has announced its store in Riverfield Drive, Bedford, is to close.

This follows the closure of the town’s other store in Rope Walk, St Johns, in August.

A source told the Times&Citizen staff had already been handed redunancy notices but a spokesman for Homebase was unable to confirm how many staff were affected.

A spokesman said: “Homebase initiated a CVA in August, leading to the beginning of negotiations with landlords on the measures outlined in the proposal. As conversations take place on a store by store basis, there is an element of fluidity in the process. We can confirm that as a result of conversations with the landlord, the Riverfield Drive store will close. Homebase’s priority throughout the process has been to keep staff informed of situations as they develop, as has been the case for this store.

The closures are as a result of restructuring plans announced back in August.

The company launched a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) on a proposed plan to reduce its cost base in the UK and the Republic of Ireland.

Homebase’s sales performance and profitability declined significantly under the previous ownership over the last two years. In addition, the company has faced an extremely challenging retail trading environment reflecting weak consumer confidence and reduced consumer spending.

The company stated at the time that these factors had had a significant adverse impact on Homebase’s trading position. After a comprehensive review, Homebase concluded its current store portfolio mix is no longer viable.

Rental costs associated with stores were unsustainable and many stores were loss making. The CVA enables Homebase to make essential changes to its store portfolio, reducing its cost base and providing a stable platform on which to continue its turnaround.

The company further stated at the time that 42 stores would close during late 2018 and early 2019 and that proposed changes to the store portfolio would mean redundancies from those stores earmarked for closure.

Read more at: https://www.bedfordtoday.co.uk/news/business/bedford-branch-of-homebase-to-close-1-8600571