One of Hull’s long-standing retailers is now geared up for its second half-century as an online-only operation.
Bonus Group, a third generation business launched in 1962, closed its electrical superstore in Willerby just before the pandemic hit.
From rented premises in Mytongate taken on by founder Eric Boanas, it had expanded to a site just off Hessle Road and then Blackfriargate, with sons Trevor and Graham taking over, opting to focus on the Grange Park Lane location for the final 15 years as a bricks and mortar retailer.
By then under the leadership of current chief executive Shaun Boanas, a large purpose-built head office and national distribution centre at Kingswood was ideally set up for the transition – having served other divisions of the business.
He said: “It was a sad day when the superstore finally closed its doors, but Bonus could see the way the sector was moving and knew that the only way forward was online, and the timing couldn’t have been better.
“Due to the pandemic, the launch of our online store has taken a bit longer than we would have liked, however we took this opportunity to take a proactive approach and improve our offering for customers.
“We have been working with our suppliers to offer an unrivalled shopping experience which includes stocking some of the most popular brands.”
The new website is described as selling a great variety of electrical items for the home and garden. Stocking brands such as Karcher and Bosch, Bonus Electrical aims to become a one-stop-shop for home appliances and lighting.
“We will still be selling all of the items our customers used to love, plus even more,” the third generation Boanas added, with a local free collection option available from the Connaught Road base. Its Tower Street trade counter remains.
“It’s great to be able to connect with the people of Hull again, over the years we have sponsored the likes of Hull City and more recently Hull FC. Our current partnership with the Bonus Arena strengthens our support for this city and we look forward to new times ahead,” Mr Boanas added, proud to have retained a 150-strong workforce in the transition.
While the Willerby site becomes the latest Trade Yard location from fellow Hull firm Allenby Commercial, Bonus has enhanced its position on the world wide web. A key figure behind the launch is Alec Ferriby, a Hull graduate who joined the firm after a prolonged internship with Team GB.
“I saw an opportunity with Bonus to use the skills I have gained over the years to aid retail online,” he said. “We did have the retail store and online site alongside it, but it never really took off. Once the retail store closed it was time to focus on this and do it properly.”