Will rapid delivery companies survive?

After stories of rapid growth and multi-million dollar investments into companies that promised to deliver in as quickly as 10 minutes, all we hear now is how they are going out of business or losing contracts. Aldi ended its relationship with Deliveroo in January after it saw demand fall as people returned to store and …

Read more

Now is the time to ask whether the Ocado model can ever work

In a market of one, it is hard to determine whether Ocado’s model will ever be profitable given that it made a loss for so many years and is now reporting higher losses, mainly as a result of a large investment in new technology. This is not a criticism of the fulfil from warehouse model …

Read more

As inflation bites, tech needs to prove that it can cut retailers’ operational costs

London was packed on Saturday and Sunday Jan 30-31. This will be taken as a positive sign by retail optimists that the sector in in further recovery. Except it depends on your definition of the word recovery. Sales volumes fell 3.7% in December, after a modest 1.4% rise in November and a miserable 0.8% in …

Read more

Where will retailers place their tech bets in 2022?

We have read all the trends posts, and I mean all of them, so we have combined our experience with what the market is saying and taken a view, which essentially means we picked only the ones we think matter, particularly as we disagree with a lot of the recycled nonsense that just gets rebranded …

Read more

For cool new brands, Black Friday is definitely not cool

Naming no names (sorry), but have you noticed just how many companies go from being cool and disruptive startups to boring corporates in two years or even less. I am thinking of a sports wear company that took the world by storm but just announced its Black Friday campaign. What the hell happened to a …

Read more

It’s time to stop talking about the future: 10 takeaways from Retail Week Live

Following two days at this year’s Retail Week Live in London, after a gap of two years, several pennies finally dropped, as follows : We need to stop talking about the future because it has already arrived and is busy slapping some people in the face. Hard. Most retailers want to talk about what to …

Read more

Making a connection with customers in store is key to the future of the store

While I am not as old as John Timpson the chairman of Timpson, I understand his annoyance at being called mate in a store. You can read what he said here : https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2021/10/11/getting-matey-customer-not-always-best-approach/ I also do not like to be called mate or chum or even bruv. However, I put this irritation behind me for …

Read more

Dinosaurs, democracy and next day delivery

Building more and more warehouses to serve ecommerce shows capitalism at its most rampant; there will be a price to pay. Post-industrial and farm land has been disappearing under warehousing and related logistics infrastructure for decades and now we are seeing offices, retail stores and land closer to cities being converted for logistics to fulfil …

Read more

Supply chain problems are no bar to convenience retail growth

The concern over rising prices due to supply chain issues resulting from both Covid and Brexit hides the fact that UK consumers have never had more choice of products and locations, and this trend will continue to grow. The evidence is everywhere. For instance, the new owners of Asda are planning (says the Sunday Times) …

Read more

The retail rates rip off continues

Given that I can find no one with a positive word to say about the chances that the Government’s rates review, already delayed, will have anything concrete to say on the outrageous inflation in rates, let’s assume it will be a damp squib. Retail rates are now higher than rent, announced the Grocer today, which …

Read more

Join Retail Connections

Get the latest industry views and exclusive member offers sent direct to your mailbox.