1,200 jobs the prize as internet fashion brand boohoo targets giant Sheffield warehouse

Where once it was renowned for industry, Shepcote Lane in Tinsley is now on the front line of the internet shopping revolution.

Tuesday, 27th February 2018, 11:30 pm
Fashionable young people aged 16-24 are boohoos biggest customers

Burnley-based fashion company boohoo is interested in a giant empty warehouse there, potentially creating 1,200 jobs, The Star can reveal.

‘Sheffield 615’ fell vacant after printing firm Polestar went bust with the lost of more than 600 jobs in 2016.

Peel Logistics bought the former Outokumpu site beside Junction 34.

Following a £4m refurbishment by owners Logicor, it was marketed by Sheffield firm CPP as the ‘largest empty warehouse in the UK’, with docking for 33 lorries.

Six firms quickly showed an interest, CPP said last month.

Now, The Star has learned boohoo is in ‘detailed discussions’ about taking it on.

The company is an internet retail star, with turnover of nearly £295m for the year ending February 2017, up more than 50 per cent on the previous year, with a pre-tax profit of almost £31m. Share prices also nearly doubled in that year.

Peel Logistics bought the former Outokumpu site beside Junction 34.

It specialises in ‘own brand’ fashion clothing for 16-24-year-olds, with 9,000 products. Mobile devices accounted for 70 per cent of online searches in 2017.

A boohoo spokesman said: “We are reviewing a number of sites for ongoing expansion but no decisions have been made yet.”

The potential mega-move comes just a month after The Star revealed internet shopping giant Amazon could build a giant warehouse on an empty plot, also on Shepcote Lane, creating up to 1,000 jobs.

The US firm is believed to be in discussions with Peel Logistics about talking up to half of the 48-acre former Outokumpu stainless steel processing site beside, Junction 34 of the M1 near Meadowhall.

Peel snapped up the former plot in May last year and hopes to obtain planning permission from Sheffield City Council for a business park this year.

A Peel Logistics spokesman declined to comment.

If the Amazon deal goes through, it could establish a giant ‘fulfilment centre’ within two miles of Sheffield city centre, employing up to 1,000. A spokesman did not comment.

It already operates a ‘last mile’ distribution centre in Brightside, which is a base for white vans that deliver items to homes.

The fast-growing firm already employs more than 1,000 at four sites in Doncaster, including a £100m mega-shed at Verdion’s iPort development off the M18 near Rossington.