Weekly Retail & Leisure News - 08 December, 2014
George Osborne pledged to review the business rates system
and extend short-term measures to boost the high street in last week’s Autumn
Statement. The chancellor said that he would cap the inflation-linked increase
in business rates to 2%, a measure that would cost the Treasury £125m and also announced
a full review of the structure of business rates. Tim
Beattie, Head of JLL Rating commented: “We welcome the announcement of the
increase in retail rate relief to £1500 in the next financial year which will
help some struggling retailers. The 2% cap on all increases in business rate liability
is also good news, although this is not a huge giveaway as it would otherwise
have been 2.3%.”
In other news, the lure of Black Friday bargains lifted
weekly sales at John Lewis to the highest levels in its 150-year history, with
one tablet computer sold every second in the rush for pre-Christmas bargains.
Figures released by the retailer on Tuesday showed sales of £179m in the week
to the end of Saturday, up almost 22% on Black Friday 2013, surpassing the
record of £164m set in the week before Christmas last year and cementing the
event as a fixture on the British retail calendar.
Further strength in the UK retail and leisure market
can be seen through by two new entrants announcing market entry plans. South
African billionaire and retail expert, Christo Wiese, is set to open a 50 store
discount fashion chain, called Pepkor. The retailer will be targeted at mothers
and children and sell a range of affordable fashion products. In addition, Menchie’s,
the American frozen yoghurt parlour chain, has announced that it will launch in
the UK next year with plans to open 200 stores and create up to 3,000 jobs. JLL
Retailer Services team are advising
Menchie's on its expansion.
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Director, Head of Retail Research (UK & EMEA)
+44 (0)20 3147 1155
Director, Head of UK Retail & Leisure
+44 (0)20 7318 7838
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