A Week on the High Street

January 22nd 2020

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RETAIL AND LEISURE

'New store Tuesday’ has become a talking point in Iceland headquarters as they continue to expand their food WAREHOUSE offering. The latest three outlets opened in Poole, Scunthorpe and Harlow last month taking the total UK stores to 118. The retailer plans to maintain the current rate of 30 to 35 openings a year, eventually hitting a total of 300-400.

 

Leicester’s £50m Great Central Square regeneration scheme has seen the opening of two new hotels. The ten-storey full-service Novotel will offer 154 bedrooms and the Adagio has been designed for short and long-term stays with 73 two-person studios and 25 two-room apartments for up to four people.

 

Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group has announced a further six stores will close as rent negotiations with landlords have not ended favourably. The stores in Bournemouth, Camberley, Cheltenham, Truro, Witney and London’s Soho will close but Frasers said it was committed to finding roles for affected staff elsewhere within the group.

 

Arcadia Group is closing a further 12 stores: Wolverhampton, Newbury, Blackburn, Bolton, Aylesbury and Worthing are to close despite having agreed 70% rent reductions last year; Ipswich and Westfield Stratford had agreed 40% reductions but will close at the end of their lease; Carmarthen, Horsham and Blackpool were not part of a rent reduction programme but will close at the end of their leases.

 

Four Coal Grill & Bar sites have been sold in a pre-pack deal after the parent company Charterhouse Leisure went into administration. The restaurants in Basingstoke, Gloucester Quays, Bristol and Exeter have been sold and will continue to trade but the Swindon, Telford and Sheffield sites have closed.

 

Italian restaurant business Tre Ciccio has appointed administrators for their three sites. Established in 2016 the three restaurants, located in Altrincham, Bramhall and Ramsbottom will continue to trade as normal whilst the financial position is assessed, no redundancies are expected at this stage.

 

Department store chain Beales has called in the administrators to explore a potential sale or refinancing options. All 1052 staff members have been retained and the 22 stores will continue to trade while options are assessed. Beales stores are located in Beccles, Bedford, Bournemouth, Chipping Norton, Diss, Fareham, Hexham, Keighley, Kendal, Lowestoft, Mansfield, Perth, Peterborough, Poole, Skegness, Southport, Spalding, St Neots, Tonbridge, Wisbech, Worthing and Yeovil.

 

INVESTMENT 

Saudi backed Sidra Capital is reportedly in ‘advanced negotiations’ to buy The Ritz hotel in London’s Piccadilly for an undisclosed sum. The hotel, now valued at around £800m, was built in 1906 and acquired by the billionaire Barclay brothers in 1995 for around £75m, who have spent millions on refurbishing it. 

 

intu, the shopping centre giant behind the likes of the Trafford Centre, Eldon Square and Lakeside, has confirmed it is in discussions with both shareholders and potential new investors with a view to raising equity to ‘fix’ its balance sheet.

 

shopping Centre and retail park openings and closings

Rochdale’s Riverside scheme have signed Nando’s, Heavenly Desserts and Superdrug.  Following months of planning and development Sunderland’s Pennywell Industrial Estate have recently opened a KFC and will see Wickes and Aldi join them later this year. Bristol’s Yate Shopping Centre have secured new lettings with Savers, Shan’s Caberet Bar & Kitchen and House of Luxxe as well as seeing Yours Clothing relocate to a larger space.  Elephant Park will see two new restaurants, Ecudorian Miko’s and Lebanese Bayroot. TK Maxx is to open a 37,500 sq ft store at Queensgate Shopping Centre in Peterborough.  After 55 years trading Elephant and Castle Shopping Centre is to close on the 30th July.

 

in other news…..

Asda is to launch a trial sustainability store for 3 months in Leeds from May, teaming up with some well-known brands to give customers the chance to fill up their own containers: Cold-pressed brand PRESS London is to be stocked by M&S offering its juices in stores across the UK.  Sainsbury’s has been names the cheapest supermarket of 2019 by Which? who tracked 53 branded items over the year, Lidl and Aldi were not included as they do not sell their full range online. Westside, a Brixton based designer clothing outlet is inviting customers to haggle their prices down to find the best bargains possible.

Resilience in the retail and leisure market

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