High street favourite Argos has announced that it will be closing 75 of its branches as it battles to overcome its financial problems.
The catalogue shop has said that the emphasis of the business will be shifting over the next five years, with the firm turning to a more pronounced digital presence instead.
Argos is owned by Home Retail Group, who also include Homebase in their portfolio of retailers and has seen its profits steadily fall in recent months, as austerity measures, plus online competition eat away at their customer base. Home Retail Group appointed a new head of the Argos operation earlier in the year, John Walden and he has made it clear that he intends to radically overhaul how the retailer works.
The latest decision will see more than one in every 10 Argos shops closed over the next five years as a starting point, as the chain shifts its emphasis away from its traditional position on the high street and onto the internet instead.
The changes being planned will see its much-loved catalogue being wound down and replaced with a slimmed down version, with customers looking for a greater range of products directed to the website. Bosses at Home Retail Group see the internet as the future for the retailer, with high street shops increasingly becoming little more than collection and customer service points.
Despite the problems that Argos has faced in recent times with plunging sales, figures show that the country still loves the quirky retailer. Their website is currently the second most visited retail website in the UK, whilst seven out of ten people buy something from Argos at least once every year.
The changes are expected to be introduced gradually over the next five years; there has been no mention so far about any possible job losses which could occur as a result.