Last week, Wolseley, the British plumbing and heating supplier, best known on this side of pond as the corporate parent of Ferguson Enterprises, announced that it would rebrand itself as Ferguson.
That’s an end to 130 years of history, by the way, since Frederick York Wolseley opened the Wolseley Sheep Shearing Machine Co. in 1887.
Looking at the company’s financials, the move certainly makes sense to take the moniker of its dominant U.S. operation.
“Ferguson now accounts for 84 percent of group trading profit and we have decided to align the group’s name with our most significant brand in our largest market,” said John Martin, Wolseley chief executive in a press release announcing the company’s latest financials. “While the group will be known as Ferguson plc going forward we will continue to use the Wolseley name in the UK and Canada where it has strong local recognition.”
What’s more, the new Ferguson plc will report its financials in U.S. dollars starting on Aug. 1 to minimize currency volatility. The company will remain listed on the London Stock Exchange and a member of the FTSE 100, the stock exchange’s bellwether of prosperity.
In addition to the name change, Wolseley plans to exit it business in the Nordic countries and continue to transform its previously announced plans to revitalize its UK operations.
“The UK transformation program has started well and we are making good progress clarifying our customer propositions and simplifying our logistics network,” said Martin in a statement. “We have concluded our review of the Nordic operating strategy and identified a clear and executable plan to return the business to profitable growth. However, there are few synergies with the rest of the group’s plumbing and heating businesses and we have initiated a process to exit our business in the region. We have excellent opportunities to generate attractive returns in our other businesses and we will focus resources there in the future.”
To watch a Wolseley video released to explain the name change, click here.
On March 28, Wolseley released the following company highlights cover the first half of its fiscal year: