Industry News: Congratulations Go Out to John W. Herbert from Around the World on his 80th Birthday.

Congratulations to John W. Herbert, literally from all over the world: the general secretary of the international DIY trade association EDRA/GHIN celebrated his 80th birthday on Sunday 18 April 2021.

Due to the pandemic he moved the planned celebration to the Internet without further ado. Well-wishers praised his human attentiveness especially, his modest demeanour and, not least, his British sense of humour – qualities which support his, according to many, greatest talent: bringing people together and establishing networks.

John W. Herbert is one of the influential personalities of the international home improvement industry. The foundation of EDRA in the year 2004 stems from his initiative: the European DIY Retail Association, which he has since led as general secretary from his office in Cologne, and which was later extended by the Global Home Improvement Network (GHIN).

In this function he has had the opportunity to visit 53 countries with over 400 trips since he co-founded the association in 2002. He takes these opportunities to keep in contact with the 215 members of EDRA/GHIN who operate more than 32 000 stores in 75 countries worldwide and generate a total annual turnover of about EUR 320 bn.

John W. Herbert is a firm believer and lives out his personal credo in every respect: “Trade is the indispensable will to serve, trade is a matter of the heart.” He sees this as an essential prerequisite for success in trade. Those who have had the pleasure of crossing paths with John W. Herbert particularly appreciate his expertise, his knowledge of human nature, his uncomplicated, open willingness to talk and, of course, his dry English humour. Unmatched is his amazing memory for names and numbers. His vast experience, his professional know-how and his human qualities make John a sought-after and valued representative and moderator for the DIY industry worldwide.

However, the lively, healthy living and sporty John W. Herbert is not yet thinking of cutting back or even quitting, according to the official press release of the association. As a world traveller in the field of DIY, he is still in “cracking form” to continue representing the interests of the industry worldwide, on the international stage with maximum and relentless energy, and to cultivate professional connections for the benefit of the EDRA/GHIN members.

Global DIY-Network: “Meet the CEO” Series – Veronica Valdez, CEO of Promart.

At 15:00 CEST on Wednesday the 21st of April John W. Herbert will continue the “Meet the CEO” series with an interview with Veronica Valdez, CEO of Promart. The interview can be live-streamed through the Global DIY-Network, with all other “Meet the CEO” interviews available to watch on demand.

Veronica Valdez was appointed CEO of Promart on March 1st 2020, and has experienced an incredible challenge taking on a new role under COVID circumstances, in which all Promart stores were ordered to close for almost 3 months in 2020.

From another point of view, the challenge has given her the opportunity to learn a lot in a very short period of time: transformation via innovation, efficiency, and most importantly, teamwork.

Promart belongs to Intercorp Retail, which is under the Intercorp umbrella – one of the largest and more diversified business groups in Peru. Veronica comes from a background in finance and began in Promart as CFO and two years later was appointed CFO of Supermercados Peruanos – the food store chain – three years later she returned to Promart as CEO. Before joining Promart she held different financial roles at Maestro (home improvement stores) and Cencosud (grocery stores).

Europe: Kingfisher Full Year Results Demonstrate Impact of Covid-19.

On Monday the 22nd of March Kingfisher released their full year results. The group, which operates about 1,380 B&Q and Screwfix stores in the UK and Ireland, reported adjusted pre-tax profits of £756m in the year to 31 March, up 634% from £103m the previous year.

Overall sales, including the group’s operations in countries such as France and Poland, climbed 7.2% to £12.3bn. Click and collect sales surged 226% and account for more than three-quarters of all e-commerce sales, up from 62% in the previous financial year.

The company announced earlier in March it would be opening 50 Screwfix stores in the UK and Ireland this year, creating 600 new jobs.

“The Covid crisis has established new longer-term trends that are clearly supportive for our industry – including more working from home, the renewed importance of the home as a ‘hub’, and the development of a new generation of DIYers – and we expect these to endure,” said Thierry Garnier, the chief executive of Kingfisher.
“With our strategic progress, we are well positioned to capitalise on these new and positive market trends.”

Europe: Hornbach Group Increases Net Sales by 15.4% to Euro 5.5 Billion in 2020/21 Financial Year.

The coronavirus pandemic presented the Hornbach Group with a memorable 2020/21 financial year (March 1, 2020 to February 28, 2021).

People withdrawing to their own four walls, employees increasingly working from home, and consumers sustainably changing their behaviour – all these factors provided a veritable boost to demand for DIY and home improvement product ranges.

Against this backdrop, based on initial preliminary figures net sales at the Hornbach Holding AG & Co. KGaA Group increased by 15.4% to Euro 5,456 million. Hornbach Baumarkt AG, the largest operating subgroup, operated 161 DIY stores with garden centers and online shops, as well as two specialist retail outlets, in nine countries across Europe at the balance sheet date on February 28, 2021 (2019/20: 160). Sales here also passed the 5-billion mark, rising by 15.6% to Euro 5,117 million. On a like-for-like basis and net of currency items, group-wide sales at the DIY stores with garden centers (DIY) grew by 14.7 %.

Sweden: Byggmax Group Updates Financial Targets .

Byggmax Group’s Board of Directors has decided to update the group’s financial targets, to better reflect the company’s growth ambitions. Byggmax saw a sales increase of 29 per cent from 2019 to 2020. Yesterday, Byggmax Group held a Digital Capital Markets Day. The program covered Byggmax’s position and future ambitions, and also how Byggmax is impacted by some of the biggest trends of our time: discount, the home, and e-commerce.

“We have a strong position and are growing significantly faster than the market, with the fastest growth from e-commerce”, says Mattias Ankarberg, CEO of Byggmax Group. “The new sales target, to reach SEK 10 billion by 2025, clearly shows our ambitions to continue to grow fast. The other targets show our aim to do so with good profitability and dividend to shareholders, while maintaining a strong balance sheet and responsibility for the world around us.”

The updated financial targets are:
Net sales of at least SEK 10 billion 2025 (previous goal: organic growth of 10-15% per year)
Operating profit measured as EBITA of 7-8% (unchanged)
Net debt / EBITDA (excl. IFRS16, EBITDA rolling 12 months) max 2.5x (new target)
Dividend equivalent to at least 50% of net income (unchanged)

www.byggmax.se

Global DIY Network: “Meet the CEO” with Hiromasa Tsuchiya, Owner and Chairman of CAINZ.

On the 17th of February at 10:00 CET John W. Herbert, General Secretary of EDRA/GHIN, will continue the “Meet the CEO” series for 2021 with an interview with Hiromasa Tsuchiya, Owner and Chairman of CAINZ.

As a home improvement centre, CAINZ has always kept the goal of “improving your lifestyle” in mind, and continue to provide numerous services in order to fulfill that goal. CAINZ gather great products from both inside and outside of Japan and make them affordable, so that they can help improve their customers’ lives both comfortably and conveniently.

The interview will take place through the The Global DIY-Network the global platform which brings together retailers, manufacturers, online players, consultants, journalists & professors, among other stakeholders from the home improvement industry.

Austria: DIY Stores and other Retailers Reopen.

From Monday 8 February, all retailers in Austria were permitted to reopen their stores.

This means that home improvement stores will once again be open to the general public as well as trade customers. However, opening times will be limited from 06:00 to 19:00 and protective measures will also be increased.

An area of 20 m² will now have to be available per customer instead of the previous regulation of 10 m². Further to this shoppers will also have to wear an FFP2 mask.

Following the reopening the editors of diy Magazine asked DIY retailers in Austria for a short description of the reopening and received statements from RWA / Lagerhaus, Hagebau, Hornbach, Bellaflora and 3e AG: these can be found HERE.

Generally the reopening was described as successful with good sales and no rush.

Finland: Hardware Sales Increased by 5% in 2020.

The building and home improvement trade ended up growing by 4.8 per cent in 2020, but the growth was not evenly distributed in the industry. There was a clear difference between consumer and professional customer trade. As larger projects went on ice, consumers themselves began to improve the home and yard.

The high levels of new construction, which has been taking place for several years, started to decline in 2020, which was reflected in the professional customer trade. “Consumers, on the other hand, found pleasure in do-it-yourself, which was also reflected in the sales development focused strongly on consumer sales,” says Minna Liuksiala, CEO of the construction and DIY retail association RASI ry.

“Almost all yard and garden products were sold in record terms. Outdoor decking and grills, as well as plants and garden products saw a huge increase in demand. Demand for larger garden investments, such as outdoor hot tubs, also exceeded all expectations” continued Minna Liuksiala.

www.rasi.fi

New Zealand: Article “How Mitre 10 is Transforming for the Future”.

In January 2021 the New Zealand Hardware Journal sat down with Chris Wilesmith, CEO of Mitre 10. Despite indicating that he would be leaving the position in September 2020 Chris Wilesmith will continue as the cooperative’s CEO following an easing of the trans-Tasman border restrictions.

At the start of his appointment as CEO Chris Wilesmith referred to a transformation said to involve “the single biggest investment in the history of Mitre 10”. One year into this transformation the cooperative continues to “drive efficiency, reduce costs and empower teams to focus on doing the right things for customers to create a frictionless experience”.

A series of workshops identified six key areas which the Mitre 10 NZ CEO calls “stratgic pillars”:

  1. Experience
  2. Solutions
  3. Inspiration
  4. Delivery
  5. Confidence
  6. Responsibility
You can read the entire interview in the New Zealand Hardware Journal February Edition HERE

EDRA/GHIN: Contribution to the United Nations Sustainable Goals.

The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals are a blueprint for a more sustainable future. We believe that the Home Improvement sector is one sector ideally placed to promote these goals, both in a way we organise our businesses and through the products and services we offer to our customers.

EDRA/GHIN have completed a recent project in which we collated some highlights of the work that the EDRA/GHIN membership complete to contribute towards these goals. This is by no means an extensive list, rather a collection of examples. All information provided was sourced from publically available information.

We fully understand that sustainability is a journey, not a destination, and we will update the document as our businesses continue to develope their own individual programmes.

The highlights of contributions to the UN Sustainable Development Goals can be found HERE.

Any reader who would like to know more about the project should contact EDRA/GHIN at info@edra-ghin.org