On 18 January, Woolworths (ASX: WOW) announced it would exit its failed home improvement joint venture. The very same day Wesfarmers (ASX: WES) flagged Bunnings would buy Homebase in the UK. That phrase with the words ‘salt’ and ‘wound’ comes to mind.
It wasn’t hard to see Woolworths’ Masters would struggle to match Wesfarmers’ Bunnings from the very beginning (see Wesfarmers to win hardware battle in 2009). Now some are saying Wesfarmers is making a similar mistake by entering the UK market.