Retail news round-up on April 01, 2015: Lidl eyes additional stores; Retailers suffer business rates delay; Apple smartwatch supply; Amazon home ordering device.
Lidl eyes more than 60 additional stores
German discounter Lidl is scouting locations as it plots more than 60 additional stores in Britain and Ireland, thereby intensifying the competition in the Irish grocery trade. The retailer has tasked CBRE’s Dublin and Belfast offices to search for key sites in cities and towns to facilitate the expansion. This is thought to be the largest by any of the main grocery multiples and coincides with signs of a continuing recovery in consumer spending in Ireland.
Retailers to suffer with delay on recalculating business rates
Businesses in the North and the Midlands stand to lose a staggering £2.3bn because of the Government’s two-year deferment of the business rates revaluation, it has been claimed. Retailers will be hit hardest, accounting for 46% of the loss, as they are paying unfairly high business rates based on pre-recession data when many were on top-of-the-market rents. While the North and the Midlands face the highest overpayments on rates, the East, South East and South West will be £640m out of pocket.
Analysts from property consultancy Bilfinger GVA have calculated the effects of a 2015 rates revaluation for England, had it taken place as planned on the original April 1 deadline, and compared it with what businesses will have to pay in rates over the course of the deferred period. London-based businesses will benefit from the deferment, saving more than £1.5bn, the research found.
Apple denies smartwatch supply to Carphone Warehouse
Carphone Warehouse will not be a part of the Apple Watch launch next month as the technology company has refused to supply the smartwatch to the Britain’s biggest mobile phone retailer, The Telegraph reported. Instead of selling its stock through the same channels as the iPhone, Apple will court high-end fashion shoppers in more exclusive locations, as it charges prices as high as £13,500 for the top-of-the-range model.
Amazon unveils home-ordering device
Amazon has launched a ‘Dash Button’ home ordering kit that can place orders to replenish items such as washing powder and razors. The device can be attached to appliances around the home, and when pushed, processes a delivery request, according to BBC News. The service will only be available to users of Amazon’s premium subscription service Prime.