Homebase sold to restructuring firm as owners admit investment failings

Bunnings Warehouse, Australia

The Australian owner of Homebase has agreed to sell the DIY business to restructuring specialist Hilco Capital for £1.

Wesfarmers bought the 256-store chain in 2016 for £340m and last year announced plans to convert the stores into its own DIY brand, Bunnings. Property Week also revealed the firm’s plans to open more than 100 Bunnings stores internationally over the next five to eight years as well as rolling out a new high street format in the UK.

In a dramatic turnaround, Hilco, the company that stepped in to rescue music retailer HMV, will acquire the store network, brand, freehold property and property leases and inventory for a nominal amount following Wesfarmers’ review of its Bunnings United Kingdom and Ireland (BUKI) business. The 24 Bunnings pilot stores will convert to the Homebase brand after the transaction completes.

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