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Robert Dyas

How the Theo Paphitis Retail Group significantly increased their online sales through dropship


Virtualstock is a fast-growing technology company providing digital solutions that enhance supply chains across the retail and healthcare sectors. The business, established in 2004, works with top UK online retailers including Sainsbury’s Argos, John Lewis & Partners and Currys, as well as with Kingfisher plc and Aldi.

Virtualstock’s cloud-based platform enables retailers to expand their range of products by leveraging their trusted network of suppliers that already exist. In addition, the sophisticated tracking system results in WISMO (Where is my Order) requests being reduced, saving time and money in customer service departments and enhancing the customer experience.

About Robert Dyas

With over 150 years of experience, a turnover of £195 million and 93 stores across the South of England, Robert Dyas is a name customers know and love. It’s a staple on the British high street, and they sell a range of homeware, small electrical appliances, gardening products, kitchenware, DIY, and consumer electronics. Robert Dyas was bought in July 2012 by the Theo Paphitis Retail Group.


The Context and Challenge

Robert Dyas’ original dropship solution consisted of one-way, point-to-point EDI connections with each of its suppliers. This led to a slow supplier onboarding process with no stock and order updates, which dramatically stalled the company’s potential for growth. Robert Dyas needed a more scalable solution.

The Solution

Virtualstock provides both a front-end portal and cutting-edge APIs for all of Robert Dyas’ suppliers to easily and efficiently update the order status, stock availability and submit invoices.

Since January 2021, Robert Dyas’ partnership with Virtualstock has meant its dropship sales now amount to:

  • 58% of online sales at Robert Dyas
  • 1/4 of all business for Theo Paphitis Retail Group
  • £80 million Gross Merchandise Value (GMV)
  • 350 Suppliers now dropshipping for Robert Dyas through Virtualstock
Virtualstock is a key technology partner to Robert Dyas and has enabled us to deliver huge online growth. Well over half of our online sales are now driven by dropshipping and Virtualstock has allowed us to scale this business profitably whilst also improving customer experience.
Theo Paphitis Chairman, Theo Paphitis Retail Group
Virtualstock has enabled us to significantly grow our online offer to our customers, making it easy for suppliers to update stock and fulfil orders directly to customers.
Simon Spencelayh Chief Operating Officer, Robert Dyas