Ashley’s Debenhams bail-out offer rebuffed
Mike Ashley has written to Debenhams chief executive Sergio Bucher offering a £40 million loan to bail out the struggling department store. The Sports Direct boss wrote that he was making the offer at a "critical time" after the High Street was hit by "the worst November in living memory". Ashley owns a 30 per cent stake in Debenhams and stated that the board "doesn't really seem to appreciate the position that Debenhams is currently in and their responsibility to shareholders".
Ocado finishes the year on a high
Ocado has reported double-digit increases in revenue and average orders per week during its fourth quarter, although average order value fell during the period. For the 13 weeks ending 2 December, the online grocery retailer saw sales rise 12 per cent to £390 million, up from 11.5 per cent growth in the previous quarter. The average order value dropped by one per cent to £104.91, but average orders per week rose 13.1 per cent to 320,000.
Majority of retailers failing on social commerce
Most High Street retailers are not utilising social commerce effectively, despite almost three quarters (74 per cent) of the top 50 making it possible for consumers to see featured products when they click on a social image or post. Marketing technology company Curalate examined the take-up of commerce on three major social media channels - Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest - and the resulting customer experience.
Less than 15% trust retailers with their data
Just 13 per cent of shoppers fully trust retailers to protect their personal data, according to a new survey which analysed the growing role of technology in customer experience. A global study of 4,725 shoppers and more than 1,200 retail workers and managers from Europe, North Americam, Latin America, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East commissioned by Zebra, also found that retail has the lowest level of trust out of 10 different industries when it comes to data protection.
Dixons Carphone records £440m loss
Dixons Carphone has reported a £440 million pre-tax loss for the half-year period ending 27 October, compared to profits of £54 million over the same time last year. The electronics retailer attributed the results to charges of £490 million, largely due to a writedown on the value of its loss-making Carphone Warehouse mobile phone business and store estate.
Checkpoint launches clothing anti-theft system
Checkpoint Systems has developed a new anti-theft solution for the clothing retailer market. Mini NeedleLok is designed to protect all types of garments, including very thin fabric, deterring thieves while preventing damage that would usually occur on application of pinned security tags.
A third of shopping will be online this Christmas
Nearly a third (32 per cent) of all shopping will be carried out online this Christmas according to a new survey which also found that consumers have spent a total of £13.6 billion via mobile devices this year. A survey of 1,000 shoppers in the US, the UK, France, Germany, Spain and Italy conducted by VoucherCodes.co.uk found that the total share of Christmas spend will increase this year by three per cent, up from 29 per cent last year.
Sports Direct profits plunge post House of Fraser
Sports Direct has reported a 26.8 per cent year-on-year drop in underlying pre-tax profits to £64.4 million. However, if the August acquisition of House of Fraser was taken out of the equation, underlying earnings would be up 15.5 per cent to £180.3 million. For the six month period ending 28 October, the retail group - which also operates USC, Flannels and Evans Cycles - saw total revenue rise 4.5 per cent year-on-year to £1.79 billion, driven by acquisitions and growth in sales, as a result of Sports Direct refreshing its store estate and selling more premium items from Nike, Adidas, Puma and Under Armour.
E-receipts breaking data protection rules: Which?
Which? Has claimed several major retailers are breaching data protection laws, after an investigation found many were including unwanted marketing information in e-receipts sent to shoppers. The consumer association sent mystery shoppers to 11 retailers – Topshop, Clarks, Gap, New Look, Dorothy Perkins, Arcadia Group (Miss Selfridge, Outfit, Burton), Schuh, Mothercare, Halfords, Currys PC World and Nike.
MySale expects losses after ‘challenging’ period
MySale has warned that it expects a first-half underlying loss after enduring “challenging” conditions during its peak second quarter trading period. The Australia-based online retailer is preparing for the fact that a small earnings loss in the first half will mean revenue and profits for the full year through to June 2019 are likely to be “significantly” below market expectations.
Ingenico breaks into Russian payments market
Ingenico Group has started offering domestic processing and cross-border settlement for international payments in Russia for the first time. According to a statement from the payments provider, it is estimated that e-commerce sales exceeded €28 billion last year and with two-thirds of online Russian consumers are shopping cross-border, with e-commerce revenues are growing by 17 per cent a year.