is­mash plans grab on newly va­cant stores

The Sunday Telegraph - Money & Business - - Business - By Margi Mur­phy

A CHAIN that re­pairs cracked screens on iphones plans to swoop on va­cant stores left by re­cent high street re­tailer clo­sures as it con­tin­ues to ex­pand.

is­mash, which of­fers same-day screen re­pairs across 26 cities in the UK, will open 70 new shops by the end of 2020. Ju­lian Shovlin, chief ex­ec­u­tive, who formed the chain shortly af­ter leav­ing univer­sity, said: “It is sad, but peo­ple need to adapt and of­fer some­thing dif­fer­ent than just prod­ucts.

“They need to of­fer an ex­pe­ri­ence or ser­vice. Mo­bile net­works are see­ing this and in­vest­ing in ser­vice and af­ter-sales, giv­ing them a rea­son to come back.”

Screen re­pairs are a con­tro­ver­sial ven­ture, once con­fined to the back rooms of cor­ner shops. Ap­ple and Sam­sung have tried to curb the in­dus­try, void­ing cus­tomers’ war­ranties if they seek re­pairs from third par­ties.

An iphone re­pair at is­mash costs on av­er­age 40pc less than at Ap­ple. Cut prices cou­pled with prom­i­nent lo­ca­tions on the high street, train sta­tions and ma­jor shop­ping cen­tres, have pushed up sales from £7.5m to £11.5m in 2017. Turnover of £19.2m is forecast in 2018.

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