Dobbies becomes £300m business as business blooms

Garden centre chain Dobbies has seen its growth spurt pay off with sales topping £300 million. This is after becoming the UK’s biggest player.

The company said like-for-like store sales had performed well, with an increase of 5 per cent. This is together with a 6 per cent hike in “customer basket size”.
It pointed to a strong performance in its core plants and gardening business as well as in its food halls. These have expanded the range of produce on offer.
Accounts for the 12 months to 24 February show that total sales were up 12 per cent to £166 million. During the year, the group acquired six sites and disposed of two “non-core” garden centres.
Acquisition and associated restructuring costs amounted to £3.3m,. This is non-recurring to the operations of the business.
Since the end of the reporting period, Dobbies has bought 31 garden centres from Wyevale. It means the estate is now 69 stores with underlying sales of about £300m. This is double the level when the business was bought from Tesco in 2016.
Chairman Andrew Bracey said: “We’re delighted with the continued strong performance. With sales up 12 per cent and like-for-like sales up 5 per cent.
“We’re also very encouraged by the progress made in our newly-acquired garden centres.
“The integration of the new centres is moving at pace. We look forward to providing market leading garden centres for our customers.”
Chief executive Graeme Jenkins added: “Dobbies has delivered a strong performance this year. This is as we continue to differentiate our retail and hospitality offerings.
“Our trading performance is testament to the hard work of the team. We are well positioned to enjoy a successful Christmas season. We are continuing to invest across the estate to ensure our customers enjoy the best shopping experience we can offer.”

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