Coronavirus: Delays to UK retail supply chains but no panic yet

Clothes factory China

As workers in China begin returning to work after the coronavirus-extended Lunar New Year break, experts are predicting modest supply chain delays but say there is no cause for retailer panic.

While a number of retailers, including fashion brand Superdry and furniture specialist DFS, have confirmed the possibility of small delays due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in China both are taking steps to mitigate any impact on revenues, according to an analyst note from Jefferies.

Superdry have said it doesn’t “impact to be material” but have established a working group to “review and mitigate as needed”, including investigating the possibility of airfreighting wholesale stock and cancelling stock if it has sufficient options already available.

The menswear retailer is also looking to rephrase deliveries to prioritise jackets to ensure it has early season demand, cancel the tail of some ranges and has looking to shift supply to regions such as Turkey or India to free up capacity.

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