Go Outdoors plots three store openings and hits £200m turnover

Management changes see arrivals from the bike industry; Shops opening in Milton Keynes, Kidderminster and Scunthorpe
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Go Outdoors has hit a £203 million annual turnover for the first time in its 15 year history.

The retailer, touted as the UK’s largest outdoor retailer, is creating 150 more new jobs with the opening of new stores in Milton Keynes, Scunthorpe and Kidderminster – the former opening yesterday and the others launching next month. The new trio take the UK store portfolio up to 44.

Go Outdoors' annual figures saw a turnover increase of over 19 per cent. The same financial period saw the number of GO Outdoors employees increase from under 1,200 to over 1,800.

Recent appointments have seen the retailer bring in senior staffers from Halfords and Wiggle.

“The £200 million turnover milestone is a tremendous achievement for everyone concerned with GO Outdoors," said founder and CEO John Graham. "We are hugely grateful for the way staff, customers and suppliers have all believed in – and supported – us. We are all as passionate about the outdoors today as we were 15 years ago with one store in Sheffield and 14 staff. This year we will open our 44th store. It is a continuing success story we are all very proud of.”

In February, GO Outdoors confirmed it was appointing Chris Matthews as its new CEO. He'll join in May, coming from Dixons Retail where he is currently the managing director of Greece’s leading electrical retailer Kotsovolos, with 103 stores and a market-leading multi-channel offer.

Matthews is the latest new member of the management team refreshed with new expertise. Last year the company appointed Dan Quinn from Tesco as commercial director, Jon Asbury from Halfords as GO Outdoors’ first multi-channel director, Chris Morgan from Focus as chief finance officer and Jeff Fagan as retail director from Mothercare. The board also appointed David Cox, a former chairman of Wiggle, as non-executive director.

Unlike outdoor retailers like Decathlon, which primarily stocks bikes under its own-brand B'Twin, Go Outdoors retails a number of brands available across the trade.

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