Newspaper retail round up

A round up of the retail stories from the week… Threshers, Supermarkets, Ocado, VAT, Selfridges, Shop Direct Group

Threshers owner owes Diageo £2m

First Quench Retailing, the owner of the Threshers chain, which went into administration in October last year is said to owe drinks giant Diageo, which owns Smirnoff and Guinness, more than £1.9m.

Supermarket competition test puts jobs at risk

If the Government’s proposed Competition Test for the grocery sector is introduced, 25,000 new supermarket jobs will be blocked over the next 10 years. The planning test is designed to stop any supermarket from becoming dominant in any area.

Ocado sales up 49% before Christmas

Sales at online grocer Ocado rose 49% in the week before Christmas, as the online supermarket delivered 3.5m items to almost 42,000 customers. The strong performance is expected to renew speculation about a possible flotation this year.

From The Sunday Telegraph

Supermarkets delay VAT increase

Britain’s three biggest grocers have said they will delay passing on the higher value added tax rate on thousands of products.

From The Financial Times

Selfridges sales up 16% over Christmas

Upmarket department store Selfridges is expected to reveal that sales rose 16% above last year’s sales during the Christmas trading period, boosted by tourists.

From The Sunday Times

Fears that high street spending may drop sharply is fuelling retailers anxiety over a spate of possible bankruptcies this year, as experts warn rising consumer debt and the VAT increase will mean consumers stop spending.

From The Mail on Sunday

Rise in festive sales at Shop Direct group

Shop Direct Group, the owner of home shopping brands Littlewoods, Very.co.uk and Woolworths.co.uk reported a 6.3% rise in festive sales after delivering nearly 8m items over Christmas. An advertising campaign featuring Fearne Cotton and Holly Willoughby helped its Very.co.uk brand achieve a 26% increase in total sales.

Last minute shoppers boost Christmas spending

Last minute Christmas shoppers spent almost £500m on 23 December, helping the last fortnight of the year to outperform the same period last year.

From The Guardian

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