Administrators for the troubled garden & DIY business Focus DIY have agreed the sale of 31 of the retailer’s stores to industry rivals Kingfisher.
The leasehold properties will cost Kingfisher, owner of the B&Q, £23 million in cash with the group looking to re-open the stores as B&Q outlets later this year.
Focus DIY fell into administration earlier this week and Ernst & Young were brought in to represent the company in negotiations over the future of its 170 stores and 4,000 jobs.
Ian Cheshire, Kingfisher’s Group Chief Executive, said: “This is a good opportunity for us to accelerate our previously announced plans to expand B&Q into carefully targeted UK locations where we currently have no store representation.
“This will bring better choice and lower prices to customers and provide secure jobs and career prospects in these local communities.”
It is not clear yet which stores have been purchased by Kingfisher and whether the current staff members of the concerned stores will keep their jobs.
Focus DIY had been struggling for sales for a number of years and with the company positioned in a highly competitive yet slow growth market, the continuingly weak consumer spending environment forced it to enter administration.
Kingfisher is not the first DIY sector retailer to show an interest in the beleagured business, with The Range owner Chris Dawson admitting yesterday that he would be interested in purchasing Focus DIY as long as the price was right.