Sunday 18 August 2019

Dixons Carphone stockpiles in bid to beat Brexit

Electronics retailer Dixons Carphone Ireland has increased its stockpiling capacity by seven times over as part of its preparations for Brexit. Photo: Reuters
Electronics retailer Dixons Carphone Ireland has increased its stockpiling capacity by seven times over as part of its preparations for Brexit. Photo: Reuters

Michael Cogley

Electronics retailer Dixons Carphone Ireland has increased its stockpiling capacity by seven times over as part of its preparations for Brexit. The company's Irish arm, which was on the brink of collapse three years ago, has also targeted a 43pc increase in revenue to €400m by 2022, according to managing director Mark Delaney.

"My vision for the business is that we change our Currys PC World stores and our Carphone Warehouse stores into technology playgrounds," Delaney told the Sunday Independent. "We've got to get our customers to spend more with us. Credit will help us do that, our online proposition will help get more share of their wallet by being more convenient."

Delaney said the company has five weeks' worth of goods stockpiled in its new distribution centre in Ballymount in west Dublin, five times more than it normally holds held. "Depending on what variety of Brexit ends up being served to us, we've planned for a hard Brexit from day one. So we increased our distribution centre - we moved to a distribution centre seven times the size of the old one," he said.

"We needed it because if we were going to be closed off from the UK for any length of time that meant delays for our customers receiving product."

The Dubliner also revealed that the company had struck deals with all of its major suppliers to route products through mainland Europe "should it be required".

Since taking over three years ago, Delaney has overseen a swing from a €7m loss to a €4.6m profit. The turnaround in fortunes was in large part due to a dramatic reduction in the number of stores it had across the country.

"We began looking at property costs. We had 27 Currys and PC World stores, they were not the amalgamated versions we have now, but rather two separate entities.

"It just didn't make sense to have your product range spread around over two sites. So we consolidated those down to 16 stores and introduced a Carphone Warehouse mobile into those stores."

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