Argos to shut 50 stores while catalogue takes a back seat

Argos :set to close around 50 stores
Argos :set to close around 50 stores

Argos is to close around 50 shops, as part of a massive overhaul of the retailer that will see its flagship 40-year-old catalogue scaled back and its digital offerings upgraded.

Parent company Home Retail Group today (24 October) reported its financial results for the 26-week period to 1 September, and has outlined wide-ranging changes to make Argos better suited to the digital world.

Central to the overhaul is the closure of around 50 stores out of the total of 739. A further 25 stores are likely to be relocated.

Home Retail Group said it also planned to reduce the circulation of the Argos flagship magazine, in an effort to focus on digital channels. The magazine is currently central to the purchasing process in Argos stores.

The group said it was testing the size, distribution and format of a new catalogue, although no specific details had been disclosed.

The new catalogue is expected to be slimmed-down version that will direct customers online for the latest prices and the full Argos range.

Existing Argos stores will be also be overhauled with a more digital feel. For instance, they will be kitted out with web-based browsers and be Wi-Fi enabled, to allow customers to use their smartphones and tablets in-store.

There will also be a fast-track collection service for goods purchased online or via a mobile device.

The changes follow a six-month review at the retailer.

Sales at Argos during the 26 weeks to 1 September were flat at £1.68bn.

However, sales at Home Retail Group's Homebase stores dipped to £787m compared to £839.6m the year previous.

Home Retails Group posted overall sales for the period of £2.53bn compared to £2.57bn the previous year.

Pre-tax profits were £51.1m, up from £29.4m a year earlier.

Discussion

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now

Latest

Virgin, Baileys and Camelot join the line-up at Media360
MasterCard renews Rugby World Cup sponsorship to push cashless message
Lynx unleashes £9m 'Peace invasion' campaign
Social Brands 100 Youth: Pizza Hut most social youth brand in UK
Cheryl Cole is wild and arresting in new L'Oreal work
Morrisons told not to show alcohol ads during YouTube nursery rhymes
O2 head of brand Shadi Halliwell departs after 23 years at company in restructure
Tesco hit by further sales decline as it turns to digital Clubcard and social network
Branding guru Wally Olins dies aged 83
Duracell short film captures epic Transatlantic voyage
Ash runs Tinder experiment to show smokers are less desirable to opposite sex
British Airways teams up with Gerry Cottle Jnr for summer of rooftop film screenings
Arklu says 'girls can be superheroes too' with doll design competition
Coke enters squash market with Oasis Mighty Drops
Virgin Galactic signs up Land Rover as space flight sponsor
Motorola marketer Andrew Morley departs as Google gears up for sale to Lenovo
US Airways apologises after tweeting obscene image at a customer
Mumsnet admits users' emails and passwords accessed via Heartbleed bug
Thetrainline.com backs 'rubbish' mobile app with TV ad
Powerade launches global World Cup campaign
Subway considers taking fast food to fast lane with F1 sponsorship
Burberry's flagship Shanghai store facade responds to weather changes
Ikea splurges 'grey' Belgium with colour
Grim outlook for Tesco boss Philip Clarke ahead of expected profits fall
Thomson to create first crowd-sourced wedding decided by Facebook fans
Currency wars meets origami in Alpari FX trading ad campaign
Amazon rumoured to launch 3D smartphone in September
Facebook to allow European users to store and transfer money on site, claims report
Unilever pilots multi-brand advertising with YouTube beauty channel
Lego, Coca-Cola, Net-a-Porter, Bitcoin and AOL: the digitally creative brands