Welcome to Top Store

Best Products at Best Prices


No products in the cart.

Retailers slash prices in hope of bumper Super Saturday | Business


Retailers have slashed prices further as they pin their hopes on a bumper trading day as shoppers head out for one of the biggest spending days before Christmas.

Topshop and Miss Selfridge have increased their discounts to up to 60%, from 40% and 50% respectively earlier in the week. Jigsaw, Peacocks and House of Fraser have increased their price cuts to 50%, matching Debenhams, Hobbs and Oasis which deepened their discounts earlier in the week.

Marks & Spencer has added knitwear, its key seasonal category, to its price-cutting promotions with discounts of 40%, as well as a half-price on beauty gifts.

Average price cuts were expected to top 50% by Christmas Eve for the first time, according to the advisory firm Deloitte, which analysed more than 800,000 online and in-store products. It said retailers were being forced to cut prices as they battled discount fatigue after the Black Friday promotional period in November. Lacklustre consumer confidence because of uncertainty about Brexit and the 12 December general election was also a factor, Deloitte said.

High street closures in 2019

Thousands of high street jobs have been lost this year as a result of high profile retail administrations and thousands more are at risk as Mothercare, Debenhams and Forever 21 prepare for closures. Here are some of the key industry names that have been affected.

Mothercare: Has 79 stores and 2,500 UK retail staff as its British arm prepares to go into administration.

Regis/Supercuts: Had 220 salons and 1,200 staff when it went into administration in October.

Bonmarché: Had 318 stores and 2,887 employees when it went into administration in October. It is still trading as it seeks a buyer.

Watt Brothers: The Scottish department chain had 11 stores and 306 employees when it went into administration in October. All the stores closed and the majority of jobs have gone.

Links of London: With 35 stores and 350 staff, the jewellery chain went into administration on 8 October but its sites are still trading.

Forever 21: Had three stores and about 290 employees in the UK when it went into administration in September. Stores are staying open in order to clear stock.

Albemarle & Bond: Suddenly shut all its 116 stores in September with the loss of about 400 jobs, even though it did not call in administrators. It sold its pledge books to rival H&T in September.

Karen Millen and Coast: Had 32 stores and 177 concessions, employing 1,100 people, when it went into administration in August. All sites were closed and the vast majority of staff made redundant after the brands were bought out by online specialist Boohoo.com.

Jack Wills: Had about 100 stores and 1,700 staff in the UK when went into administration in August. Bought by Sports Direct and 98 stores are still trading in the UK and Ireland.

Spudulike: Closed all 37 stores with the loss of about 300 jobs when it went into administration in August.

Bathstore: Had 132 stores and 529 staff when it went into administration in June. Homebase bought 44 stores saving 154 jobs and the brand now trades from 28 stores.

Select: Had 180 stores and 2,000 employees when the fashion retailer went into administration in May. In June administrators at advisory firm Quantuma carried out a CVA closing 11 stores with the loss of about 200 jobs.

Debenhams: Had 166 department stores and more than 25,000 employees when went into administration in April. No store closed immediately and the chain is now owned by its lenders but two will close before Christmas and another 20 in January when the group completes a rescue restructure expected to result in the loss of 1,200 jobs.

Pretty Green: Had 12 stores and about 170 employees when Liam Gallagher’s fashion outlet went into administration in March. All but one store and 33 concessions closed with 100 jobs lost but 67 saved as the brand was bought by JD Sports in April.

Office Outlet: All 94 stores have closed with the loss of 1,170 jobs after the stationery retailer went into administration in March.

LK Bennett: Had 41 stores and 500 employees when it went into administration in March. The brand was bought by its Chinese franchise partner, Rebecca Feng, saving 21 stores, all the group’s concessions and 325 jobs. But more than 100 jobs lost with the closure of 15 stores.

Patisserie Valerie: Had 200 cafes employing nearly 3,000 people when an accounting scandal prompted the chain to call in administrators in January. About 70 of the group’s 200 stores closed immediately with the loss of 900 jobs. About 2,000 jobs were saved when about 100 Patisserie Valerie cafes were rescued by Causeway Capital, more than 20 of which have since closed. 21 Philpotts sandwich shops were bought by AF Blakemore & Son. and four Baker & Spice cafes a were bought by the Department of Coffee & Social Affairs. Sarah Butler

Last-minute present buyers are expected to spend £1.7bn on what has become to be known as Super Saturday, according to the Centre for Retail Research (CRR) and the website VoucherCodes, up from £1.63bn last year. The CRR predicts the vast majority of the sales growth will go to online retailers that are now able to deliver right up until Christmas Eve.

Orders for home delivery before Christmas can be made up until lunchtime on Christmas Eve at Argos, 6pm on Monday at M& S, 8pm on Sunday at John Lewis and 10pm on Sunday at Next. On Friday, John Lewis extended the deadline for online orders that can be collected in store before Christmas until 8pm on 23 December.

Retailers are trying to secure late orders amid a nail-biting end to the biggest shopping period of the year as shoppers hold out for last minute bargains.

Sales at established bricks and mortar stores fell by 2.9% year-on-year in the week to 16 December, according to the latest BDO survey which tracks sales at mid-sized stores. Overall sales were virtually flat as online sales rose nearly 6%. Fashion was by far the worst performer, down nearly 4% overall and more than 5% in stores.

Patrick O’Brien, of the industry analysis firm GlobalData, said shoppers had completed less of their Christmas list than usual for this time in December.

He said retailers would now struggle to make up for lacklustre sales in November and early December as shoppers have left their present, food and party outfit buying later than ever.

Sign up to the daily Business Today email or follow Guardian Business on Twitter at @BusinessDesk

“There could be a release of spend but whether it comes or not is up in the air,” O’Brien said. He added that the weekend should bring strong trading but the last-minute rush could be badly affected by poor weather. “It’s not going to be turned around into a bumper Christmas no matter how Super Saturday is,” O’Brien said.

Westfield, the owner of two busy London shopping malls, said it expected this weekend to be similar to last year when a record 1.2 million people visited over Super Saturday and the following Sunday.

Myf Ryan, the group brand director for Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield, said: “This year we’re expecting a similar number of people through the doors, either ahead of returning to work for the final two days before Christmas or before taking holiday to visit family and friends further afield. We’re also anticipating a significant surge in overseas visitors looking to make the most of the shopping, dining and entertainment on offer at both our London centres.”

Source link