Currys was formed in 2014 – originally as Dixons Carphone – following the merger of Dixons Retail and Carphone Warehouse Group, which developed an outlook to capitalise on the increasingly connected world. The retail group began to rebrand solely as Currys in May 2021, which will also see it launch a new “cloud-based” website featuring deep personalisation and a focus on product content.

Currys exterior

The merger has created a retailer with turnover of £10.2bn in 2019/20, which now trades through just under 940 outlets across around seven countries. The UK and Ireland remains the largest territory, accounting for almost two-thirds of the group’s revenue.

Currys previously operated the Currys, PC World, and Carphone Warehouse fascias but closed all standalone stores of the latter brand to assist in its turnaround of the struggling mobile business arm in March 2020. PC World had acted as the B2B brand for some time but it was culled in the aforementioned rebrand.

Faced in recent years with shrinking profits, primarily relating to the challenging domestic mobile phone market, boss Alex Baldock is pushing on with a five-year transformation plan, which focuses on online and credit. 

The retailer is turning its attention to offering longer-term, credit-fuelled contracts or SIM-only deals across the network providers it is partnered with and has brought forward plans to launch its own credit offering for mobile phone deals under its own-brand network iD. The iD mobile network was launched in 2015, in partnership with telecoms operator Three, and offers 4G services at budget prices. The following year the group acquired SimplifyDigital, the UK’s largest switching platform covering phone, broadband and TV contracts.

Meanwhile, in the past few years there has been a downsizing of the business’s overseas operations, which has seen it sell off operations and exit some markets. Dixons Travel, which operated 35 airport and cruise ship stores, fell victim to this strategy in April 2021 despite providing around £20m to the group’s bottom line.

Currys also operates the Connected World Services division that offers specialist skills and operating processes to third parties that want to develop their own connected solutions.

Innovation rating: 3.5

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