Successful execution of a highly complex and demanding store closure programme across multiple regions for the bauMax group.
By the numbers
Founded in Austria in 1976, bauMax AG was a chain of home improvement stores. At the peak of its expansion in 2010 the group operated 160 stores with approx. 9,000 employees across nine countries. After several challenging years, bauMax experienced financial difficulties and decided to restructure. This process involved the closure or sale of stores in various countries. In 2014 Gordon Brothers was approached to sell the Furniture, Fixtures & Equipment (FF&E) of three stores in Croatia. Following the successful execution of this project, GB was invited to bid for the task of closing down and selling the inventory of 65 stores in Austria, 24 stores in Czech and 14 stores in Slovakia. A competitive bid saw the appointment of GB to clear the stores and deliver them back to bauMax ‘broom-clean’ in readiness for handover to the new owners. Selected over and above several competitors, this was a testament to GB’s experience and capabilities in the sector. GB was deemed to be the only business able to efficiently manage a project of this magnitude. The project comprised the closure of 103 big box DIY stores, across three different countries with differing legislations and individual requirements. This necessitated flexibility and expertise, particularly as some stores were partial sell-outs whilst others had to be sold to zero. GBE managed this complex procedure in a considered and professional manner. The client’s highest priority was a guaranteed result to win creditors’ approval of the restructuring plan, selling everything down to zero within a thirteen-week project timespan. GB’s reliable and proven approach ensured that this was taken care of, despite real client fears that it would not be possible. Three separate tiers of termination were managed to accommodate the diverse requirements from each of the buying parties. GB also added value by bringing in its own inventory to enhance results and help suppliers to clear stock. In addition, staff issues were sensitively handled throughout. All stores were closed within agreed time periods overachieving on the projected results.