Retail chain Go Outdoors explores sale options

Tue, 10 May 2016 | BUSINESS SALE

UK retail chain Go Outdoors has brought in professional services firm KPMG to explore options for a full or partial sale of the business, reports The Financial Times.

Go Outdoors sells a range of goods for the outdoor activities market, including waterproof clothing, camping equipment and bikes. The business currently employs around 2,500 workers across 57 stores throughout the UK. The retailer is also in the process of an ambitious £10 million expansion programme, which will see the company add six new stores and hire an additional 2,000 people.

Chief executive Chris Matthews, who had previously worked as an executive at Dixons, said the company was in the “initial stages” of finding potential suitors to further expand the business, but declined to say whether it would be a full or partial sale. As part of this plan, Go Outdoors is investing in the cycling market, hoping to position itself alongside Halfords and Evans.

The company’s turnover reached £202 million in the last tax year, with a 20 per cent increase in pre-tax profit, which amounted to £14 million in the same period.

The news follows a spate of consolidations in the UK outdoor retail sector, which was estimated by market researchers Profile Outdoors to be worth £1.39 billion in 2015. In the same year, for example, Cotswold Outdoor and Snow & Rock merged with Cycle Surgery and Runners Need under the brand of Outdoor and Cycle Concepts.

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