Compare and contrast how UK retailers performed overseas in 2016 amid a year of currency volatility.

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This ranking of the top 10 retailers by fastest-growing international sales, based on their most recent full-year accounts, sees drinks giant Majestic Wine crowned number one, followed closely by online electricals retailer

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RankingRetailerInternational sales (year-on-year % change)
Source: Retail Week Prospect
1 Majestic Wine 624.6
2 596.3
3 Poundland 185.9
4 Mountain Warehouse 106.3
5 85.6
6 Missguided 80.8
7 Selfridges 71.7
8 Farfetch 64.0
9 Space NK 52.6
10 Mint Velvet 52.4


Majestic Wine topped the international sales growth league table, after its overseas revenues balloned following the acquisition of Naked Wines.

The alcohol specialist was followed by in second place as the home appliance retailer launched into Germany and the Netherlands.

UK discount retailer Poundland also saw strong growth, at 185.9% on an annual basis, as it trialled stores in Spain, while Mountain Warehouse and rounded off the top five.

Despite economic uncertainty, UK retailers are gearing up for an international expansion push. According to Retail Week research some 56% of retail chief executives have said international expansion will become more important during the coming 12 months, a huge increase from 2015 when just 4% of retailers named international expansion as a top business priority for the year ahead.

Reflective of the weakness in sterling, growing international online sales is a bright light for growth particularly. This is highlighted by the fact that three of the top 10 ranked retailers – Missguided, Selfridges and Farfetch – all recorded robust sales growth in overseas markets via online operations alone.

As retailers look to reduce the risk of UK spending decline, a successful international expansion strategy is key.

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