Retail news round-up: Dominic Chappell to fight against regulators, Debenhams in Ireland reports increase in profit and a quater of Ireland customers are shopping online

Dominic Chappell to defend regulator’s action

Dominic Chappell has decided to fight legal action by the Pensions Regulator to pay into the pension scheme, saying that the black hole in the scheme was not his fault, The Guardian reported.

The regulators have halted legal proceedings against Sir Philip Green as he agreed a £363m cash settlement. However, it is continuing legal action against Chappell and his company Retail Acquisitions, seeking as much as £17m.

A spokesman for Retail Acquisitions said: “Any action brought by the Pensions Regulator will be robustly defended because RAL did not cause or add to the pension deficit, that shortfall was built up during the previous ownership.”

“Dominic Chappell is currently working very hard with the liquidator to recover and preserve nearly £50m, which will benefit the creditors and BHS pensioners.”

Debenhams Ireland posts a pre-tax profit

Debenhams Retail (Ireland) Ltd has reported a pre-tax profit of €19.6m (£16.81m) following an exit from a successful examinership last year, The Irish Independent reported.

The retailer has recorded a net exceptional gain of €24.8m.

Revenues increased 8.5% to €180m in the 53 weeks to the end of September 3.

Quarter of Irish customers shop online

A quarter of customers in Ireland shop online every week, with 23% of shoppers buying most of their clothing and footwear online last year, according to PwC survey, The Irish Independent reported.

According to the survey, 27% of Irish respondents have never visited a grocery retail website in a year; while 40% shopped in-store at least once a week.

The level of weekly online shopping in Ireland is below the 43% of UK consumers shopping online every week.

PwC said that the undeveloped Irish online grocery market is reason why Ireland is lagging behind the UK.