Retail news round-up on June 2, 2014:Tesco seals deal with House of Fraser for online sales, Kingfisher boss says an independent Scotland would be less attractive to invest in, Online retailer Made.com mulls IPO
Tesco seals deal with House of Fraser for online sales
UK grocer Tesco has inked an agreement with House of Fraser to sell the department store’s products through its website, Daily Mail reported. The plan will be hailed by beleaguered Tesco chief Phil Clarke this week as an important step in reviving its fortunes, but coincides with another set of disappointing sales figures.
Tesco is likely to report a 3.5% slump in like-for-like sales at its British stores in the three months to the end of May.
Kingfisher boss says an independent Scotland would be less attractive to invest in
Home improvements retailer Kingfisher’s chief executive Ian Cheshire said that a vote for independence from the UK would make Scotland a less attractive place in which to invest. The chain is the latest business to warn on the implications of a ‘yes’ to the independence vote in a referendum on September 18.
“It would put a pause on everything,” boss Cheshire said in comments reported by Sky News. “If we have differences on VAT, currency, it just puts everything into hibernation as we try to figure out what it will mean,” he said adding though that B&Q would not leave Scotland if Scots vote for secession.
Online retailer Made.com mulls IPO
Online furniture retailer Made.com is exploring an IPO that would mark a return to the public markets for Lastminute.com founder Brent Hoberman, the Financial Times reported. Made.com has hired bankers at Citigroup, Peel Hunt and Rothschild to consider options that may include an IPO. Hoberman said: “There isn’t much to comment on at this point. Yes, banks [are] looking at our options. But if and when we do IPO [is] not yet determined.”
Asda defends sale of England Flag that ‘looks like KKK Costume’
Supermarket chain Asda has defended the sale of a wearable St George’s Flag, emblazoned with the word ‘England’ which has been likened to a Ku Klux Klan outfit by customers on Twitter, Sky News reported. The flag features a peaked white hood, sparked a social media storm when it went on sale in ahead of the World Cup in Brazil.
But a spokeswoman for Asda, which has priced the novelty garment at £3, said: “We opted for a hood… as you never know what the British weather will bring. We want customers to get behind the team without getting wet.”
Blue Inc reveals stock market flotation plans
Menswear retailer Blue Inc has confirmed plans for a £60m flotation on the London’s junior market in spite of the weakening outlook for IPOS, the Telegraph reported. The IPO will aim to raise up to £15m which the company will use to roll out more stores. In 2013, Blue Inc generated sales of £120m and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of £5m.