Selfridges has been named the world’s top department store retailer for the second time by the Intercontinental Group of Department Stores (IGDS) .

The UK-based department store beat off competition from Macy’s in the US and Woolworths in South Africa to claim the title, which it will retain until 2014.

IGDS is the largest association of department stores worldwide and has 32 members from 30 countries on five continents.

Selfridges owner Galen Weston said: “The award criteria represents our highest priorities; a strong profile, successful development and execution of products, stores and service innovation strategies, delivery of outstanding in-store experiences, excellent customer service and strong financial performance.

“Receiving this distinction for a second term is very gratifying.”

Selfridges operates its London flagship on Oxford street and three other stores across the UK.

Selfridges & Co managing director Anne Pitcher said: “We have had a terrific couple of years since last winning, and it is a tribute to the commitment of our teams that we have been honoured with the award again for 2012.

“As the world’s eyes are on the UK for the summer Olympics and Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, Selfridges looks forward to delivering an extraordinary London experience for our customers from around the globe.”