Retail news round-up: BHS to return in the UK as an online retailer, Sainsbury’s reports dip in sales, Tesco’s pension deficit increases
BHS to return in the UK as online retailer
BHS plans to make a comeback in the UK as online retailer, after the 88-year-old company collapsed into administration in April, The Telegraph reported.
After administrators failed to secure a buyer to take on the £571m pensions deficit, BHS International (UK) Limited, formed by the Al Mana Group, acquired BHS.com, the international franchise business, as well as the BHS brand in June.
The Al Mana Group is involved in various sectors such as retail, automotive, real estate, media and technology, representing brands such as Zara, Armani Exchange, Mango, Reebok and United Colors of Benetton.
The retailer will relaunch online as BHS.com on September 29 and will sell a range of home furnishing and lighting products.
BHS International has stated that it will sell around three-quarters of the retailer’s prevalent products and plans to add clothing ranges later in the year.
Sainsbury's is expected to report a drop in sales when it unveils its second-quarter results this week, The Belfast Telegraph reported.
Deutsche Bank analysts are expecting a 1.9% fall in like-for-like sales for the second quarter amid the Argos deal and supermarket price war.
Sainsbury’s, which invested £1.4bn in its acquisition of Argos and Habitat owner Home Retail Group, is also speculated to clarify on the next phase of the tie-up on Wednesday.
Sainsbury's boss Mike Coupe stated that the supermarket will increase the number of Argos outlets from 13 to 30 by Christmas and will introduce five Mini Habitat stores within its supermarkets over the coming months.
Tesco’s pension black hole increases to £5bn
Tesco’s pension deficit has increased to more than £5bn, which threatens to delay the resurrection of dividend payments, The Telegraph reported.
The pension black hole deficit is another setback for Tesco, which has been attempting to maintain its balance sheet following an accounting scandal two years ago.
Tesco’s pension scheme encompasses 350,000 members, including 203,000 active members of staff.
The supermarket reported earlier this year that it had reduced its pension deficit to £2.6bn after tax, from £3.9bn last year.
Tesco currently has to pay £270m a year to fund its pension deficit, which is expected to rise during negotiations with pension trustees next year.