Retail Week looks ahead to the next seven days with updates from Sports Direct and Ocado, plus the latest retail sales data on the agenda.


Next week in retail

Retail sales

The latest BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor is unveiled on Tuesday, with the sector hoping to build a sense of trading momentum.

Sales rose across the board during October, which was the best-performing month since January.

On a like-for-like basis, sales rose 1.7% between October 2 and October 29, while total sales rose 2.4%.

The troubled fashion sector in particular will be looking to continue on an upward curve after new seasonal ranges buoyed sales during October.


The online grocer updates the market with its fourth quarter trading performance on Thursday.

Ocado enjoyed a 15.4% uplift in sales to £314m during its third quarter, covering the 12 weeks to August 7, but warned that the market “remains very competitive.”

Despite the tough environment, the etailer hailed its best “volume performance in more than five years”, as the average number of orders per week jumped 18.9% to 226,000.

And its finance boss Duncan Tatton-Brown insisted the business “could not be better placed” to ride out the challenges posed by the fiercely contested grocery market.

Sports Direct

The under-fire retailer reveals its half-year results on Thursday.

Sports Direct has been mired in controversy over its use of zero hours contracts and allegations of poor working conditions at its Shirebrook warehouse.

Its founder Mike Ashley, who gave evidence to MPs in the summer, has taken the reins as boss in a bid to rebuild its ailing reputation and transform its financial fortunes.

Amid the controversy, Sports Direct has issued three profit warnings within a year.

Its underlying profits for the year ending April 24 slipped to £381.4m, well below its target of £420m.