|Public limited company|
|Traded as||LSE: DRTY|
|Fate||Merged with Fnac|
|Headquarters||London, United Kingdom|
|David Newlands (Chairman)
Thierry Falque-Pierrotin (CEO)
Régis Schultz (president)
|Products||White and brown goods,
digital photo processing,
|Revenue||€3,656.8 million (2016)|
|€53.8 million (2016)|
|€3.7 million (2016)|
Darty plc (formerly Kesa Electricals plc) was a multinational electrical retailing company headquartered in London, United Kingdom. It was listed on the London Stock Exchange until it was purchased by the French retailer Fnac in 2016.
In 1957, the Darty family — the father and his three sons, Nathan, Marcel and Bernard — managed a small store of textiles. The Darty brothers started to sell stock, and, to attract customers, they left the goods on the pavement. In a few days, the stock was sold. In 1967, the Darty brothers transferred to a larger warehouse. In 1988, the company proceeded with the repurchase of the company by its employees through a management buyout thus showing economic and social innovation. The operation was a success, since 90% of employees took part and controlled 56% of the capital. At the end of 1988, Darty opened its hundredth store.
In 1993, Darty was bought by Kingfisher plc, which integrated Darty and Comet in a European entity based in Paris: Kingfisher Electricals S.A. ('Kesa'). In 1999, this led to Darty opening up a commercial internet site. This entity increased in size through acquisitions and, at the beginning of 2003, included Darty and But in France, Comet in the United Kingdom, BCC in the Netherlands, Vanden Borre in Belgium and Datart in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In 2006, Darty launched DartyBox, which is an ADSL internet, television and telecommunications provider based on the network of French internet operator Completel.
The company was demerged from Kingfisher plc in July 2003. In July 2007, the company bought Menaje Del Hogar, an electrical retail chain based in Spain. On 6 July 2009, the company sold its Swiss operation. In February 2012, the company completed the sale of Comet Group, which they sold for £2 to OpCapita in November 2011, and also paid the purchaser a "sweetener" of £50 million to take the loss making venture away.
On 31 July 2012, Kesa Electricals was renamed Darty plc. In March 2014, Darty launched its own marketplace (developed by Mirakl) that lists products and services from Darty and third-party vendors.
In November 2015, Darty plc reached an agreement to merge with the French retailer Fnac. In March 2016, Darty announced it had instead agreed to be purchased by Steinhoff International for £673 million, through Steinhoff's Conforama subsidiary. Fnac returned with a higher offer, resulting in a bidding war between Fnac and Conforama during April 2016. The Fnac offer was declared unconditional on 19 July 2016, thereby allowing the takeover to be completed.
Darty was headquartered in London. It had sourcing offices based in Paris and Hong Kong, as well as a wholly owned wholesaler of electrical accessories, Dacem, which supplied all of Darty's European operations.
Its structure was as follows:
- Darty France: retailer in France; operating 222 stores with 321,800 square metres of selling space
- BCC: retail and E-commerce in Belgium and the Netherlands; operating 75 stores with 89,800 square metres of selling space
- Vanden Borre: retailer in Belgium; operating 62 stores with 55,600 square metres of selling space
- "Preliminary Results 2016" (PDF). Darty. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "History: 1988-1992". Darty. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Les offres DartyBox ADSL soumises à un an d'engagement". 01.net. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- Simpkins, Edward (14 September 2003). "Kingfisher profits wiped out by Kesa demerger bills". The Telegraph. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
- "Kesa Electricals to buy 54-unit Spanish chain". City Wire. 25 July 2007. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Kesa nears 11m Swiss sell-off". City AM. 17 June 2009. Retrieved 16 July 2016.
- "Comet electrical stores sold by Kesa for £2". BBC News. 9 November 2011. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
- "Kesa renames itself Darty as it turns in a loss". The Telegraph. 20 June 2012. Retrieved 6 October 2012.
- "Case study: Darty". Mirakl.com. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
- Caroline Baldwin (27 July 2015). "Why are retailers launching online marketplaces?". Essentialretail.com. Retrieved 2016-08-03.
- Kostov, Nick (6 November 2015). "France's Fnac and Darty Agree Merger Terms". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
- "Steinhoff drops Home Retail bid; buys Darty". Financial Times. 18 March 2016. Retrieved 18 March 2016.
- Thomson, Adam; Massoudi, Arash (21 April 2016). "Fnac and Conforama trade rapid fire bids for France's Darty". Financial Times. Retrieved 22 April 2016.
- "Groupe Fnac Offer For Darty Declared Unconditional". Morning Star. 19 July 2016. Retrieved 25 July 2016.
- "Group Overview". Darty. Retrieved 16 July 2016.