Analysis: Lush and Watches of Switzerland on nailing international expansion

Watches of Switzerland, Regent Street, London

‘Non-essential’ UK retailers have had a bruising year and many of those that have proved most resilient have relied on international markets to bolster growth in 2020. Should more businesses look to do the same in 2021 and beyond?

We’re all dreaming of jumping on a plane these days and jetting off to warmer climes. But should retailers be looking overseas to drive growth?

It’s certainly not an easy journey: many British retailers have tried and failed to expand abroad. But for those who are prepared to take the plunge and have a proposition worth shouting about, the prospects are hopeful.

GlobalData predicts that global retail sales will grow by 28.4% to $31.09bn over the next five years, a growth rate that is flattered by poor performance in 2020 due to Covid-19. Global retail increased by just 1.6% last year to $24.21trn. Over the past five years (2015 to 2020), global retail sales grew 19%. 

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