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Wiggle to close Homebase servicing concessions just a year after opening

Email to customers with “massive regret…due to circumstances outside of our control”

The cycling retailers Wiggle is set to close all of its concessions in Homebase stores this month - just over a year after opening the first one and detailing its plans to roll out more.

In an email sent to customers, the e-tailer said it was closing the Wiggle Workshops with “massive regret…due to circumstances outside of our control”.

The first to close will be in Milton Keynes and Cambridge, on Saturday October 3, while the St Albans store is expected to close on October 10.

Wiggle told Retail Week there were “no plans to reopen but we are working hard to fill the gap”.

The e-tailer had initially opened the physical stores to offer servicing, click and collect and customer returns.

In May, the firm said it was to open two workshop concessions in Homebase stores later this year.

Homebase itself is however closing one in four stores, citing a drop in DIY shopping and more online purchases.

Earlier this year, we reported how Wiggle was on its long-anticipated move from its base in Portsmouth to a new warehouse operation in Wolverhampton.

150 jobs were to be created in the Midlands as a result of the move to a 323,000 square foot unit at a logistics facility at Bilston near Wolverhampton, and the new space would allow the company to continue with its 15 to 20% year on year growth.

Wiggle’s operations director, Nicholas Pink, said: “By October we should be 100 per cent live and ready for Christmas.”

The new location – more than four times the size of a football pitch – is at Citadel Logistics Centre and as well as bringing its warehousing facilities together at one location will also help the business, now selling to more than 1 million customers in 70 countries worldwide, continue its growth.

Wiggle will keep its head office in Portsmouth, where in 1920 the company started life as Butlers bike shop. It went online in 1999 and by last year it was turning over £168 million.

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