Retail news round-up: Boots reports drop in sales, CJ group interested in The Body Shop and Argos to launch own-brand products

Boots reports drop in sales

Walgreens Boots Alliance, the US owner of Boots, reported a drop in quarterly sales, owing to the weaker pound and Government cuts to pharmacy funding in Britain, The Telegraph reports.

Second-quarter revenue from its international pharmacy division fell 14.5% to $3.1bn (£2.4bn).

On a constant currency basis, sales dropped 1.9%.

Chief executive Stefano Pessina said: “There is still the challenge in the UK with the NHS having cut the reimbursement”.

“That will continue, though Boots has performed robustly over the key Christmas period, but retailing is still itself quite challenging particularly in the UK, which is our largest market.”

South Korean CJ Corp to bid for The Body Shop

South Korean CJ Corp is planning to bid for The Body Shop, The Times reports.

Food-to-entertainment firm CJ Corp expressed the desire to take part in the auction.

Other groups included in the purchase include Apax Partners, CVC Capital Partners, Goldman Sachs and Advent International.

Argos set to unveil own-brand products

Argos is planning to develop its own-brand ranges with help from Sainsbury’s designers, Evening Standard reports.

Commercial director Robbie Feather, former head of Sainsbury’s online business, said Argos has an opportunity to develop its own products, owing to the supermarket’s design credentials.

Sainsbury's sells Tu skinny jeans for £14 to £18, compared to high street jeans which cost £24 to £50.