B&Q will close its Homefit Installation Service in December in what it describes as a bid to simplify its kitchen and bathroom operation and provide customers with a more streamlined offering.
The company will continue to sell the installation service to its customers until the July 9 and will complete its installations for customers until December, when it is planning to close the whole service.
Sales for B&Q have dropped by 9% to £828 million in Q1 compared with the previous year.
Speaking on behalf of The British Institute of Kitchen, Bedroom & Bathroom Installation (BiKBBI), chief executive Damian Walters said: “The announcement will no doubt be a cause for concern for those involved. I just want to firstly reassure B&Q’s installers, who are also members of BiKBBI by association, that we are working incredibly hard with the senior management team to identify ways in which we can support installers through this process.
“It is very clear to me that whilst B&Q have made some difficult commercial decisions, I have been incredibly impressed with their focus and support for those installers and management involved. I am more than confident we’ll be in a position to provide great support.”
Mark Rigby, head of installations at B&Q, gave his assurance that agreements with current B&Q installers will operate as usual, which includes payments.
Walters concluded: “What’s more, B&Q will still be trading kitchen and bathroom product moving forward. The consumer will still want it installed by professionals, so whilst B&Q will no longer be providing that service, I’m sure their customers will still want to connect with professional installation specialists – and that’s perhaps where BiKBBI and our members, including B&Q’s existing installers, will step in. We’ll be working hard, fast and smart with B&Q to support these professionals. I personally don’t see this as the end for those involved, but more a new beginning.”