Screwfix is the United Kingdom's largest multi channel retailer of trade tools, accessories and hardware products. Founded in 1979 as the Woodscrew Supply Company, the company was acquired in July 1999 by Kingfisher plc, which also owns B&Q, and is listed on the London Stock Exchange.
Based in Yeovil, Somerset, Screwfix started life as the Woodscrew Supply Company in 1979. The company’s first mail order catalogue consisted of a single page, solely dedicated to screws; in 1987, this was increased to a four page version named "Handimail" offering hardware to DIY and trade professionals.
The first catalogue to be produced in the name of Screwfix Direct appeared in 1992, and, with a turnover of £4 million, the company moved into larger premises at Pen Mill, Yeovil, in 1994. This was to herald the start of significant growth, in 1998, with a turnover that had virtually doubled year on year to £28 million, the company moved to a purpose built site at Houndstone Business Park in Yeovil.
The first website was launched in February 1999, five months before the company was acquired by Kingfisher plc. Later that year, the company expanded its site in Houndstone, with the opening of a new contact centre employing five hundred people. In January 2000, Screwfix announced a turnover of £58 million, and trading hours were extended to seven days a week.
In January 2001, turnover first exceeded £100 million, and after further expansion in the contact centre, Screwfix announced sales of £185 million in 2002. The thousandth employee joined the organisation in March 2000, and a month later. next day deliveries within mainland United Kingdom were introduced.
The company relaunched the website later that year, and was awarded Retailer Of the Year. In September 2004, to continue to meet the increased demand, a fully automated, 325,000 sq ft distribution centre was opened in Trentham, Stoke on Trent, fulfilling next day orders. The Screwfix Community, an online forum, was also launched later that year.
In 2008, there was the launch of Plumbfix, offering qualified plumbers a wider range of specialist goods at better prices, this was followed by the launch of Electricfix the next year. In July 2011, Screwfix launched its "Click & Collect" service, which enables customers to order and pay securely online, and collect in store in as little as one minute.
Also that year, Screwfix's mobile website was set up enabling customers, with an easier shopping experience when not at home. Click & Collect was introduced onto this platform in January 2012, since then sales from mobiles have increased by 250%.
By 2013, Screwfix launched its three hundredth store, and with this success, they moved into new markets in 2014, opening seven stores in Northern Ireland and four stores in Germany. Since 2013, the web and mobile site has been extended to include 33,000 products available online, and the contact centre extended their opening hours to deliver a 24/7 service.
2015 saw the launch of Screwfix's Quickshop app, which allows customers to build their order on their smartphone and generates a QR code which can be scanned at the till point in store. Screwfix currently has a network of over 750 stores across the United Kingdom and Ireland (as of November 2021) with further stores in the United Kingdom and Ireland planned to open in the next couple of years.
Screwfix.com attracts up to 7 million unique visitors per week and the Screwfix Click & Collect service means customers can purchase supplies online (or over the phone) and then collect from store in as little as one minute. In 2016, Screwfix won the "Teleperformance Customer Experience Initiative of the Year" at the Retail Week Awards. In 2018, Screwfix was awarded Retail Week’s "Best Retailer over £250m" and "Digital Pioneer".
In August 2021 Screwfix launched a hyper convenient, in app delivery service ‘Screwfix Sprint’. The service will be available across 34% of UK postcodes by the end of the year, with a further rollout planned for 2022.
n 2008, there was an aggressive rollout of stores, including the three hundredth store opening. In January 2014, the company moved into Northern Ireland, where there are now nineteen stores open.
As of November 2021, Screwfix operates a network of over 750 stores across the United Kingdom and Ireland. In March 2021, Screwfix announced they would be opening 50 new stores (40 in the U.K. and 10 in Ireland) by the end of January 2021.