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3000 Jobs To Go At Focus Diy

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No buyer could be found for a ponzi DIY business. Quelle surprise! So yesterday!

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http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2011/may/25/focus-diy-3000-job-losses-stores-close

Up to 3,000 jobs are to be lost at Focus DIY as the administrators announced the closure of its remaining 120 stores, crushing hopes that a buyer could be found.

The loss-making DIY chain, owned by US private equity firm Cerberus, collapsed into administration three weeks ago, burdened by debts of around £230m. Administrators at Ernst & Young are appointing Gordon Brothers, a specialist retail agent, to liquidate stock and shut the remaining shops.

Focus had 178 shops and employed 3,920 people when it collapsed but E&Y managed to sell 55 stores in tranches to B&Q owner Kingfisher, rival DIY chain Wickes, owned by Travis Perkins, and discount chain B&M Retail, saving some 900 jobs. A mooted management buyout led by former Focus chairman Bill Grimsey has not materialised.

An E&Y spokeswoman said the administrators would continue to try to sell the remaining stores, but closing down sales are set to start on Wednesday.

Focus has blamed the recession and the housing slump for its troubles, but analysts say it has always been squeezed by the two bigger DIY chains, B&Q and Homebase, and never managed to carve out a niche for itself.

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It's the warn weathers thought. As this hampered the housing Market and thus stopped people spending in DIY shops.

In other news 150 jobs to starting next month at Selex. 92 in Basildon. Defence cuts starting to bite. Still I'm sure the private sector will pick the slack...

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The loss-making DIY chain, owned by US private equity firm Cerberus, collapsed into administration three weeks ago, burdened by debts of around £230m. Administrators at Ernst & Young are appointing Gordon Brothers, a specialist retail agent, to liquidate stock and shut the remaining shops.

I always find it fascinating that so many companies are involved in another company going bust.

Board appoint Administrators x who appoint agent y who appoint company z, etc, etc.

Someone is making a pretty penny!

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I wonder how much HIGH RENTS contributed to the losses?

Rentiers + bankers had better get good at flogging DIY and electricals soon to fill their empty sheds. rolleyes.gif

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I wonder how much HIGH RENTS contributed to the losses?

Uber... the DIY stores I remember and see the old empty ones of, are all pretty much close to the town centres. The one in Bury was 3 mins walk from the town centre, the bolton one is in the town centre.

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its not even worth any analysis. people who buy houses use DIY shop. until recently they thought the BTL crowd would hold it, but FFS. with no new couples being able to afford the min £30 fµcking thousand pounds house deposit, they cant be walking to B&Q and ETC for sh1tload of copper worktops and sh1t.

all the big DIY chains are ass fµcked.

and thats a known diy fact.

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I think B&Q are still players in the game. The others I don't know, staffed by drongos mainly. B&Q have City & Guilds qualified staff and are worth visiting just for the advice even if you don't buy anything. Last weekend I got one of their electricians to show me exactly how to dismantle a particular sort of halogen lamp fitting. Very knowledgeable chap.

Didn't buy anything mind you. ;)

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I think B&Q are still players in the game. The others I don't know, staffed by drongos mainly. B&Q have City & Guilds qualified staff and are worth visiting just for the advice even if you don't buy anything. Last weekend I got one of their electricians to show me exactly how to dismantle a particular sort of halogen lamp fitting. Very knowledgeable chap.

Didn't buy anything mind you. ;)

Mrs Posh has dealings with B&Q. Everything about them is watertight. Staff are well trained, management are switched on and everybody is happy.

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No buyer could be found for a ponzi DIY business. Quelle surprise! So yesterday!

I guess the writing was always on the wall when B&Q stuck an enormous warehouse right on the doorstep of focus head office. Everyone who worked at that head office had to drive past it, it was pretty demoralising.

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But I suspect that when you need to buy something B&Q will be first port of call, unless it is far cheaper elsewhere.

Yes, I cheerfully pay over the odds for a good service.

(I used to pay £25 for an oil change at Kwik Fit until some idiot stripped the thread on the sump and the oil leaked out. Then I got a proper garage to fit a helicoil and now I pay them double to change the oil without damaging anything.)

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Do the people sneering about 'private sector taking up the slack' have any alternatives?

Please don't suggest taxing/borrowing/printing money and then paying useless people to do useless things, it's been tried extensively over the last 30 years.

The public sector needs to get it's knee off the private sector's windpipe, and quick.

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Talking of B&Q, I was adapting some of my software to talk to their quoting system the other week - they are amazingly well organised, if a little onerous for smaller companies to deal with.

Wealth is created by finding more efficient ways to be more productive. They seem pretty good at it.

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Where's soon not to be a chain retailer?

Did they have much stock? Presumably the other retailers' will be rubbing their paws together.

...less choice = higher prices.

...no choice = the highest price of all. ;)

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Wealth is created by finding more efficient ways to be more productive.

Isn't that just a long winded way of saying one man's increased wealth= another's man redundancy?

Both efficiency and productivity are measured against the same ruler- how many people you need to employ to get the thing done.

So to claim that a more efficient and productive economy will inevitably lead to increases in employment seems an odd kind of logic- surely the only reason to get more efficient and productive is to allow you to reduce headcount, not increase it?

So if I automate my factory and sack ten workers I can see that their wages now end up in my pocket- but have I created 'new' wealth, or have I just rearranged the way the existing wealth was shared between me and my former workers?

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its not even worth any analysis. people who buy houses use DIY shop. until recently they thought the BTL crowd would hold it, but FFS. with no new couples being able to afford the min £30 fµcking thousand pounds house deposit, they cant be walking to B&Q and ETC for sh1tload of copper worktops and sh1t.

all the big DIY chains are ass fµcked.

and thats a known diy fact.

Landlords spending on DIY and maintenance, I think not.

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So if I automate my factory and sack ten workers I can see that their wages now end up in my pocket- but have I created 'new' wealth, or have I just rearranged the way the existing wealth was shared between me and my former workers?

Time is money and in aggregate you've just created a lot of man hours that can be more usefully deployed.

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Time is money and in aggregate you've just created a lot of man hours that can be more usefully deployed.

I see what you mean- I suppose the question then becomes does the freed up manpower fall to a cost level where it competes with the labour saving technology that is displacing it?

Given that the rate of technological development looks to be exponential in nature, while the rate at which the workforce can get cheaper is a lot more 'sticky' I'd still say that the the introduction of more and more 'labour saving' technology may not create as many jobs as some people seem to believe it will.

The idea that if the whole economy becomes more efficient and productive more jobs will be the outcome seems counter intiutive to me- we seem to be embarked on a self contradictory course in which the aim of full employment is to be achieved by the elimination of jobs via technology in order to enhance productivity. :blink:

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The Third Age of DIY is truly over, in Middle Earth! :huh:

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I see what you mean- I suppose the question then becomes does the freed up manpower fall to a cost level where it competes with the labour saving technology that is displacing it?

Given that the rate of technological development looks to be exponential in nature, while the rate at which the workforce can get cheaper is a lot more 'sticky' I'd still say that the the introduction of more and more 'labour saving' technology may not create as many jobs as some people seem to believe it will.

The idea that if the whole economy becomes more efficient and productive more jobs will be the outcome seems counter intiutive to me- we seem to be embarked on a self contradictory course in which the aim of full employment is to be achieved by the elimination of jobs via technology in order to enhance productivity. :blink:

It works if you can export into other markets. It works if the businesses doing so are expanding and increasing their profile, sales, customer base, global reach in terms of product distribution.

If it is purely a play to run away from an increasing cost base without the above then it is a big fail.

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I see what you mean- I suppose the question then becomes does the freed up manpower fall to a cost level where it competes with the labour saving technology that is displacing it?

Given that the rate of technological development looks to be exponential in nature, while the rate at which the workforce can get cheaper is a lot more 'sticky' I'd still say that the the introduction of more and more 'labour saving' technology may not create as many jobs as some people seem to believe it will.

The idea that if the whole economy becomes more efficient and productive more jobs will be the outcome seems counter intiutive to me- we seem to be embarked on a self contradictory course in which the aim of full employment is to be achieved by the elimination of jobs via technology in order to enhance productivity. :blink:

That is the crux of the whole thing. As long as there are tons of good opportunities out there, replacing humans with automations frees up those people to work on those other opportunities. So then we get the output of the automations and the new work the replaced humans do.

I can logically prove that eventually the machinery will become so capable and cheap that there will not be other opportunities for people to keep up with the replacement rate. Knowing that a sane society simply provides every citizen a dividend equal in value to the output gap as it develops. Arguably with medical care, public schooling, pensions, welfare, housing benefit and so on we are already doing that.

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