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Retail Update - January 2016


Posted At: 26 January 2016 10:40 AM
Related Categories: Administrations, Retail, Retailers


Since our last update Christmas has come and gone and we have the first retail casualty of 2016 – Brantano. Having been loss-making for a number of years, Brantano’s demise was not unexpected. Macintosh Retail Group sold Brantano and sister company Jones Bootmaker to Alteri in November 2015 who subsequently appointed advisers to look at options for the chain.

Similarly, and a little more of a surprise, was Blue Inc’s announcement that it was putting its subsidiary A Levy Ltd into administration and closing 74 stores to restructure the business for profitable growth.

It remains to be seen what will happen with either of these retailers – and indeed if any others will succumb to administration – but SnapShop will bring you the news as it is reported.

2015 was a good year on the whole. Consumer confidence increased in December and the whole year showed positive scores for the first time in its history; London welcomed a record number of international tourists last summer with more than 5.2 million visits between July and September; and pub and restaurant groups continued their strong growth – the underlying long-term trend shows that like-for-like sales for the whole 12 months of 2015, up to the end of December, were ahead 1.5% on 2014. 

It will be interesting to see what trends 2016 will bring and how our high streets will fare.

Indeed, a new proposal from Fragmented Ownership to revive shrinking high streets has launched following the release of data that shows footfall in the UK’s town centres is continually declining. Fragmented Ownership, a group of property experts and investors, argues that town centres need "investment zones" run by a single body that would be able to offer a package, rather than a disparate collection of shops. Let’s see if this latest revival plan manages to achieve something where others have failed.

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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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