B&M is one of the fastest growing retailers in the UK and also one of the most profitable of the discounters. Led by brothers Simon and Bobby Arora since they acquired the business in 2004, they have remained in charge following the group’s flotation in 2014.

B&M exapnded internationally through its acquisitions of German-based Jawoll in 2014 – disposed of in 2020 – and French retailer Babou in 2018, whose stores are being rebranded as B&M. Domestic expansion also came in the form of an acquisition as B&M added Heron Foods to its cohort in August 2017.

The overarching aim of the discounter is to reach 950 B&M stores in the UK, having reached 681 in the year ended March 2021 (FY2020). A further 45 new B&M stores are expected to open by March 2022 – taking the total to approximately 726 – whilst the retailer plans to simultaneously complete its transition of Babou stores to the B&M brand and undertake “geographic expansion” of Heron Foods.

The group reported a solid 25.9% increase in sales to £4.8bn – of which B&M UK accounted for £4.1bn – and a 108.5% increase in pre-tax profit to £525.4m during FY2020.

Looking ahead, the retailer will continue to focus investment on its store expansion strategy at B&M and geographic expansion at Heron Foods – as its Bedford distribution centre development has completed and is now operational. Affirming this, B&M said it is ”not currently evaluating any further acquisition opportunities” as it now wishes to focus on organic growth.

Innovation rating: 2

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