Second distribution centre for Kingfisher subsidiary
Kingfisher-owned building-trade materials retailer Screwfix Direct is to open a 545,570 sq ft (50,685 sq m) distribution centre in Stafford to pave the way for it to more than double its Trade Counter stores to 37 by the end of the year.

The 10-year lease signed yesterday on the Stafford site will mean that, by the time the distribution centre opens in June, Screwfix Direct will have two distribution hubs supplying its stores in towns and cities such as Gateshead, Stockport and Bristol. The first centre is in Trentham.

At present, there are 19 Trade Centre stores in operation.

Screwfix Direct managing director Steve Willett said: 'Our sales have continued to increase year on year and not only has our catalogue expanded and our web site traffic levels increased, but the number of active customers and the average order value has also grown.

'The Trade Counters have opened up a further channel for our customers, allowing them immediate access to the entire Screwfix range.'

Screwfix Direct is part of the Kingfisher DIY empire and, for the 26 weeks to July 29 this year, sales rose by a quarter to£159.9 million and increased retail profit by three-quarters to£10.9 million.