Amazon are an unlikely contender to take over a tranche of Homebase stores according to a report in this weekend’s Telegraph. With a shortage of UK warehousing space, large locations are at a premium and the closure of 42 Homebase stores represents an opportunity for Amazon Logistics that appears too good to pass by.
Closure of the 42 stores will result in a loss of some 1,500 jobs at Homebase and whilst Amazon taking over some of the stores would generate jobs it’s unlikely that the same people would be employed on similar contracts. There’s a big difference between working on a checkout or running the garden centre in Homebase and being a warehouse operative or courier driver for Amazon.
The move makes a lot of sense for Amazon as Homebase stores are generally situated close to urban areas but are mainly out of town locations and so perfect for expanding their Prime Now same day services in a rapid expansion to their Amazon Logistics arm. In order to offer Prime Now, Amazon need to have their fastest moving lines close to the end consumer for same day services and almost on their doorstep in order to offer one-hour delivery.
It is currently now known how many Homebase stores or how many Amazon might be interested in acquiring but it would appear unlikely that they’ll face serious competition from retailers looking for large warehouse type space in the current retail environment. The high street is struggling to come to terms with competition from online and that extends to retail parks where Homebase stores are typically situated.
The 42 Homebase stores scheduled for closure
|Aberdeen Bridge of Don
Bedford St Johns
Cardiff Newport Road
Croydon Purley Way
Dublin Naas Road
London New Southgate
Oxford Botley Road
Poole Tower Park
Southampton Hedge End
Swindon Drakes Way