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Roger Provins 228/02/2018 09:08:21
342 forum posts

Seems like Maplin are in trouble.


Martin Dowing28/02/2018 09:20:38
245 forum posts
4 photos

Geeks are buying over internet from wherever is cheaper.

larry Phelan28/02/2018 09:23:53
544 forum posts
17 photos

How much of it is of their own making ?

From recent posts,not too many people are happy with them.

V8Eng28/02/2018 09:28:08
1337 forum posts
28 photos

I guess that Maplin (like many other stores) are suffering from being used as a showroom and demonstrator by people who have no intention of actually purchasing from them, afterwards going home and finding the cheapest internet price.


Edited By V8Eng on 28/02/2018 09:30:46

KWIL28/02/2018 09:38:41
3147 forum posts
57 photos

No, Maplin started the slide themselves when they tried to become a toy and gimmicky store. They (at least my local one) could not be bothered to help and I had to start ordering from their online store. Apart from that their prices were already too high and the rest you know.

Neil Wyatt28/02/2018 09:40:06
17090 forum posts
690 photos
76 articles

Came at length up a week ago:

Michael Gilligan28/02/2018 09:52:28
14781 forum posts
635 photos
Posted by Neil Wyatt on 28/02/2018 09:40:06:

Came at length up a week ago:


True ... But Roger's link gives a significant 'status update'



Maplin - owned by Rutland Partners - had put the business up for sale, but talks with a potential buyer are understood to have broken down.

SillyOldDuffer28/02/2018 10:01:14
5138 forum posts
1074 photos

Does it help to know that Maplin's are owned by Pizza Hut? And that Pizza Hut are a subsidiary of Yum! Brands of Louisville, Kentucky? Or that Yum! Brands were previously known as Tricon Global Restaurants, who were originally the fast food division of Pepsi Cola?

Nostalgia ain't what it used to be!


Ian S C28/02/2018 10:04:43
7468 forum posts
230 photos

In the same report, I heard that Toys R Us (think that's the right name) are also going under.

Ian S C

Neil Wyatt28/02/2018 10:28:54
17090 forum posts
690 photos
76 articles

Went into Toys'R'u/s to do Christmas shopping.

It was almost empty on 'black friday'

Very little was on demonstration, almost everything was just piled higher and higher on huge racking.

No staff interaction with customers.

No interpretation of what was on sale - lots of the toys were linked in to films/franchises or huge ranges but no guidance for what suited what age, what went with what especially where you need 'a' before you can use 'b'.

I came away amazed what toys you can buy for very reasonable prices but also feeling like I'd been to a store-room rather than a toy shop.


Brian G28/02/2018 10:45:41
651 forum posts
25 photos

Maplin in administration now **LINK*

Together with Toys R Us that is over 5,000 people's jobs on the line.


Edited By Brian G on 28/02/2018 10:46:44

Muzzer28/02/2018 10:46:42
2904 forum posts
448 photos

I think they both lost their way. I never really found anything compelling in Toysaurus that wasn't available elsewhere - better and / or cheaper. It always seemed such a tragic place.

Funny to hear Maplin are owned by the same people as Pizza Hut, given that the shop staff in Maplins probably know more about Pizza than they do about electronics - perhaps there is an opportunity for redeployment / career progression within the group! That's certainly been reinforced whenever I've interacted with them. The website is also crap and the "technical" grunts who answer the online queries don't seem to have a CSE in woodwork between them, often giving completely wrong info. I guess it's the "pay peanuts, get monkeys" problem, although there is also irony that the senior monkeys who have been responsible for blindly steering their company onto the rocks will undoubtedly have been very well paid indeed.


Michael Gilligan28/02/2018 10:59:58
14781 forum posts
635 photos
Posted by Neil Wyatt on 28/02/2018 10:28:54:

... I came away amazed what toys you can buy for very reasonable prices but also feeling like I'd been to a store-room rather than a toy shop.


Reminiscent of the early 1970s when the 'box-shifters' nearly killed the 'Hi-Fi' trade.

i.e. ... I came away amazed what toys you can buy for very reasonable prices but also feeling like I'd been to a store-room rather than a specialist shop.


MW28/02/2018 11:10:47
2050 forum posts
51 photos

Toys aren't us; They're not keeping up with the trade and they lose it, it's as simple as that.

I see all these very niche small toy shops doing well. enough staff to keep ontop of the place and talking to customers.

I don't see why they couldn't just downscale the whole operation towards that end of the market where the money is.

As for Maplin, the moment they stopped being electronic specialists and wanted to be "gadgets" instead, they pitfalled hard, everyone went to them because they sold components. That's how I heard about them.

These big companies never seem to realize that I cannot spend my money unless they have what I'm looking for. If they have it, I'll buy it. Yes, elsewhere might do it cheaper, but if they've got it right in front of me, then the price doesn't matter as much so long as it's not prohibitive. 

The only saving grace I can see for them would be to move away from the bricks and mortar idea and go to being online, and get back to their core market.

Michael W


Edited By Michael-w on 28/02/2018 11:17:13

Martin W28/02/2018 12:19:06
812 forum posts
29 photos

I doubt that Maplin could survive even if it went back to its original values as companies like CPC are selling components in low quantities at low prices, i.e. Branded metal film 1% 0.25W at £0.66p for 50 units, and semiconductors at equally low prices. Then if you a prepared to wait Chinese suppliers will often undercut these prices. I have bought items from China for £0.99 with free postage! I suspect that Maplins were forced to move away from components etc. as the prices fell and they couldn't make enough profit, if any, and had to change their marketing strategy to survive to this point.

Another example is how the price of ready assembled items, like computer motherboards, has fallen through the floor and the likewise the profit margins. Yes it's nice to be able to go into a shop and have a look but if then the shop does not sell enough to cover it's costs it quickly becomes a very expensive and loss making hands on catalogue for the company.

Martin W

Edited By Martin W on 28/02/2018 12:20:43

Andrew Johnston28/02/2018 12:32:37
5115 forum posts
594 photos
Posted by Martin W on 28/02/2018 12:19:06:

I doubt that Maplin could survive even if it went back to its original values..............

Correct, now that professional suppliers like RS/Farnell/Digikey/Mouser, and others, will sell direct to the individual via a credit card and online ordering there is simply no call for a small company serving the hobbyist market.


Russ B28/02/2018 12:58:12
560 forum posts
21 photos

I'd much rather shop locally, and don't mind paying a little bit more to do so, but when they can only offer sub par goods that's a problem, and when they then want to charge the same or more as online shops charge for good or average quality goods, that's a moral line crossed and my opinion becomes that they can now go and fornicate with themselves.......

I think there is a demand for a place like Maplin's on the high street and hopefully if they vanish, it will leave an opening for someone who's not stupid enough to light both ends of a candle.

Good riddance to bad rubbish.

V8Eng28/02/2018 15:08:28
1337 forum posts
28 photos

I reckon people will find that Maplin’s is owned by Rutland Partners not Pizza Hut, although (I think) Pizza Hut UK Restaurants are also owned by Rutland Partners (look them up, perhaps for some surprises).

Edited By V8Eng on 28/02/2018 15:20:39

Douglas Johnston28/02/2018 16:07:55
672 forum posts
32 photos

Excuse me while I shed a tear or two, it was Maplin mail order that got me started with an interest in electronics many years ago. As has been said they lost out when hobby electronics faded away and they could not find a good reason to exist.


Swarf, Mostly!28/02/2018 16:50:49
509 forum posts
41 photos

For me, the 'tipping point' in DIY electronics came when components got to be too small either to see properly or to insert by hand.

The slippery slope got steeper when thru-hole components were superseded by surface mount.

Best regards,

Swarf, Mostly!

P.S.: Does anyone want a litre of WW2 vintage moulded mica capacitors?


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