Analysts at investment bank Goldman Sachs have told some of the UK’s largest supermarkets to close a fifth of their stores to combat increased competition.
US retail group Sears Holdings is seeking to curb losses in time for the busy holiday buying season, announcing far-reaching job cuts and store closures.
Puma intends to permanently close around 90 of its stores in China as part of an on-going effort by the German sportswear retailer to reduce its overall costs worldwide. Puma recently announced that its sales rose by 11.7 percent, to a total of €804.7 million. This significant increase was not enough to avoid a total loss amounting to 45.8 million US dollars, indicating that the company needs to greatly lower its costs in the near future.
New research finds struggling retailers in the UK closed 32 stores a day in July and August, as over-expansion and inflexible terms with landlords forced companies to close the doors on their high street locations. The results from Local Data Company (LDC) on behalf of PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) found a huge step up from last year’s levels, when only 174 stores closed for the whole of 2011.
A £24 million deal with Sports Direct will see 550 former JJB Sports employees and 20 outlets change hands, but failed attempts at a wider restructure yesterday saw the troubled retailer collapse into administration. Some 133 stores will close almost immediately, according to administrators KPMG. Sports Direct has purchased all the stock in the business as well as the Slazenger Golf brand licenses and JJB’s freehold property in Wigan.
Home Retail will not be making mass store closures of its Argos business, despite posting a 60 per cent drop in profits for its financial year to February. The Argos and Homebase owner admitted that it was operating in a rocky trading environment, as total sales fell 6 per cent and those at Argos stores open over a year 8.9 per cent.
The Guardian has reported that the UK’s high streets have the highest volume of empty stores compared to any time in the last four years, as retailers suffered an influx of post- Christmas closures.
Apple Inc stores were closed for several hours with white sheets covering all windows, as the company held a commemorative service for Steve Jobs. Two weeks after the death of its co-founder and former chief executive, Apple’s retail stores were closed off from the public as employees spent the time in-store watching a broadcast of an event celebrating Steve Jobs life held at Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, California.
High street retailers across the UK are braced for yet another swathe of store closures following one of the harshest summer trading periods in years coupled with the increased concern about the imminent Christmas period.
Sales figures for August slipped 2.2 per cent amongst mid-market retailers – the worst drop since the depths of recession two years ago.
The riots, volatile stock markets and poor weather all collectively serve as a cause for concern for retailers facing the uphill struggle in the face of the looming quarterly rent deadline at the end of September.
Earlier this year, the rent deadlines at the end of March and June were followed by a succession of retailers descending into administration. They included Focus DIY, Habitat, TJ Hughes and Jane Norman.
Accountancy firm RSM Tenon has identified 9,000 retailers it now believes are financially vulnerable, an increase of more than 10 per cent in the last six months.
Sports Direct says it will continue to close shops that are too close to each other, according to a report this morning by Estates Gazette.
The retailer said it would open or relocate 15-20 shops over the coming year, including one in Stratford, near to the Olympic site. It opened seven in the first quarter.
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