The UK’s retail sector has been undergoing a trial by fire for years. Changing consumer habits, expensive physical estates with awkward leases, political uncertainty and increasingly empty high streets are well-documented challenges.
With the publication of British Retail Consortium (BRC) figures showing 2020 to be the worst year for retail since records began, store groups could be forgiven for thinking that there is only one question left to answer - can it get any worse?
Hoping that the sector has hit rock bottom and can start to rebuild feels like the most viable position to take. And the evidence suggests that some retailers may now be ready to stop failing and start rebuilding.
The blunt figures make for painful reading. “Total sales for 2019 decreased by 0.1%, compared with 1.2% growth in 2018. This is the worst year on record,” according to the BRC.
And, despite further painful figures, a consensus appears to be emerging on a course of action that may offer some hope.
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