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Retail Update - November 2014


Posted At: 21 November 2014 00:59 AM
Related Categories: Administrations, Retail


No administrations have been recorded on SnapShop since our last update, although it has emerged that the demise of the former mobile phone retailer Phones 4U will cost the UK taxpayer £78 million.

The UK is currently gripped in a frenzy of releasing Christmas advertising campaigns as each retailer vies for customer spend, with some even deciding now is the right time to launch their very first. This is most evident in the grocery sector as competition between the ‘big four’ and the discounters continues to increase.

However the grocers try to entice shoppers, it doesn’t detract from the fact that the UK grocery market has fallen into decline for the first time in 20 years, causing some concern in the sector in the lead-up to the crucial festive trading period. According to Kantar Worldpanel sales for the 12 weeks ending 9 November fell 0.2%.

Waitrose chief Mark Price has said that the ‘big four’ could be forced to start closing doors as the industry enters its most radical phase of change since the 1950s. Analysts of Goldman Sachs agree, saying that the biggest British retailers must shut one in five of their outlets in order to survive.

There is however, positive sentiment among retailers that this Christmas will be better than last year’s. According to a Barclays’ survey of 300 UK retailers, nearly 70% believe Christmas will bring better trading than last year owing to an improving economy and healthier year of trading. This compares with 52% of retailers last year who were positive on that year of Christmas trading.

This sentiment is supported by a new study by eBay and Conlumino, which predicts that UK high streets will receive a boost this Christmas due to shoppers making three additional shopping trips each to collect parcels bought via Click & Collect. It also predicts that the average Click & Collect high street visit will drive £27 in spontaneous spending back in to bricks and mortar retail units this Christmas as three quarters of shoppers will buy additional goods and services on impulse while out collecting parcels.

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The opinions expressed herein are the personal opinion of the author and are not intended as statements of fact and do not represent the view of SnapShop or Pragma in any way.


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