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News Release

London

JLL UK Retail comments on BHS property announcement


Commenting on the BHS property restructure, Damian Sumner, Head of Retail Agency at JLL, said: "The BHS situation has been rumbling on for a while. It has created a lot of uncertainty in the market and the change of ownership last year further complicated the picture.  Efforts have been made to broaden BHS's offering through food and selling of electrical goods, but the size and configuration of some of the stores has made it difficult for BHS to effect change through sub-letting to other operators without landlord assistance.

"The CVA process will at least  give some clarity  on the future structure of the business and will allow decisions to start to be made. The majority of stores that are on the potential closure list seem to be the most expensive in terms of rent so it is a question of affordability for BHS rather than purely over renting.

"Major landlords have been putting plans in place for some time to secure alternative occupiers on BHS stores. The key will be about a balance of retaining income but with the flexibility to implement these plans at some stage in the future.

"Retail Acquisitions now need to be able to offer a clear plan as to how this large scale property restructure will give them a platform to turn the struggling retailer round and appeal to a wider customer base."