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Wolseley 'planning Bathstore sale'

Heating and plumbing firm Wolseley has taken the first steps to selling its Bathstore retail chain, The Sunday Express has reported.

The FTSE 100 Index company is said to be in the process of appointing advisers to work on the disposal of the 160-store chain, which sells bathroom suites and hardware such as taps.

The Sunday Express said the retail business is at odds with the rest of Wolseley’s portfolio, which includes Plumb Center and mainly caters for trade customers.

Earlier this year, the firm announced a deal to sell Bristol-based building tools and equipment firm Brandon Hire. The move followed a review led by chief executive Ian Meakins, which saw 19 of the group’s underperforming businesses put on a list to improve or sell. It did not name the businesses to be offloaded if they failed to perform.