High Street chain collapse sweepstake

thegeek
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Joined: Sat 04 Jun, 2005 12.35

Fancy burger place Byron is doing a pre-pack administration thing, apparently to save some of their restaurants.

https://www.theguardian.com/business/20 ... rger-chain
gottago
Posts: 172
Joined: Thu 29 Jan, 2009 19.50

The John Lewis closures don't seem awful in the grand scheme of things (job cuts aside), mostly their small at home and their two tiny travel stores. I read on Twitter that the Watford branch has been rent free for some time and if they can't make it work without that overhead then what hope would it have had in a post Corona world?

The Birmingham one is surprising to me however, given it seemed to be touted as a real flagship at the time. Only been through there once just after Christmas and it seemed busy and had a hell of a footprint on that station so its effect will surely be felt. Did seem odd that it was a fair walk from the main shopping areas though.
Martin Phillp
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Joined: Wed 11 May, 2011 01.28

I agree that the JL closures seem to be the least worst decision. Regarding Birmingham, my guess is while the footfall was good, they simply weren't spending enough to meet the overheads.

The Boots closures also announced today I believe are 48 Boots Opticians stores. They'll probably keep the concessions inside main stores where they're more likely to get customers who are also in there to buy other products, than competing against Specsavers, Vision Express and long standing independents on the high street as a standalone.

However, I wouldn't put it past Boots in the end to close some of the smaller community based stores in the future. My local Boots seems to do most of their trade via prescriptions than the overpriced goods on the shelves. If I go into Lloyds Pharmacy, which IMHO is a much better retail experience, I'll get my meds and also end up buying something else too.
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GeekyJames
Posts: 18
Joined: Sun 09 Sep, 2018 22.14

gottago wrote: Thu 09 Jul, 2020 13.22 The John Lewis closures don't seem awful in the grand scheme of things (job cuts aside), mostly their small at home and their two tiny travel stores. I read on Twitter that the Watford branch has been rent free for some time and if they can't make it work without that overhead then what hope would it have had in a post Corona world?

The Birmingham one is surprising to me however, given it seemed to be touted as a real flagship at the time. Only been through there once just after Christmas and it seemed busy and had a hell of a footprint on that station so its effect will surely be felt. Did seem odd that it was a fair walk from the main shopping areas though.
According to this article Grand Central are saying they're still in discussions with John Lewis regarding their Birmingham store...

“We will continue our discussions with John Lewis regarding their future in Birmingham, as there remains a significant period left on the lease. However, the strong city centre and high footfall location of the current John Lewis space lends itself to future alternative uses, which we will explore.”

https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/m ... s-18568366
thegeek
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Joined: Sat 04 Jun, 2005 12.35

Martin Phillp wrote: Thu 09 Jul, 2020 18.22
The Boots closures also announced today I believe are 48 Boots Opticians stores.
Most of which are, I'd guess, former Dollond & Aitchison stores.
Martin Phillp wrote: Thu 09 Jul, 2020 18.22
However, I wouldn't put it past Boots in the end to close some of the smaller community based stores in the future.
Are a lot of these not also acquisitions? I thought Boots had a bit of a policy of buying up pharmacies to stop the competition buying them.
(I'm not sure if closing a pharmacy needs some sort of consultation, depending on other services in the area)
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Pete
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Location: Dundee

thegeek wrote: Fri 10 Jul, 2020 06.23 (I'm not sure if closing a pharmacy needs some sort of consultation, depending on other services in the area)
possibly if its the designated late night outlet?

Boots have ended up with a lot of small pharmacies very close to one another due to acquisitions.

That said, with them often being small you wonder whether the HQ beancounters say to close one when they both are in fact busy and the remaining one can't take on the extra business. I often find the pharmacy service in larger boots is very poor, to the point that when I was once given an emergency prescription over 111 the Doctor's exact words were "it'll be in the boots at Albert St for midday. I mean its offering me the town centre at 9am but... you know..."
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Martin Phillp
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Joined: Wed 11 May, 2011 01.28

Pete wrote: Fri 10 Jul, 2020 09.25
thegeek wrote: Fri 10 Jul, 2020 06.23 (I'm not sure if closing a pharmacy needs some sort of consultation, depending on other services in the area)
possibly if its the designated late night outlet?

Boots have ended up with a lot of small pharmacies very close to one another due to acquisitions.

That said, with them often being small you wonder whether the HQ beancounters say to close one when they both are in fact busy and the remaining one can't take on the extra business. I often find the pharmacy service in larger boots is very poor, to the point that when I was once given an emergency prescription over 111 the Doctor's exact words were "it'll be in the boots at Albert St for midday. I mean its offering me the town centre at 9am but... you know..."
My local Boots is a community sized store where they're the only pharmacy. To be honest, the pharmacy side is as poor as the large stores, where waiting for your meds to be dispensed is really slow. On the other hand, I've been to another small Boots, handed over the script and had my meds in less than 2 mins!
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thegeek
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Joined: Sat 04 Jun, 2005 12.35

By the way, speaking of D&A - according to Wikipedia, they used to be owned by TWW - as in the ITV franchise. That particular fact was lacking a citation, so I went looking for one, but the earliest documents I could find on Companies House showed that they were later owned by Gallaher, a tobacco firm.

(I mainly know of Gallaher because their name popped up every so often in my dad's shop, where they were the previous tenants. It was an Argos-type shop, where you could pay in tokens from Kensitas cigarettes. Pretty much everything was originally a nicotene-stained yellow, from years of people smoking their way through packs of fags for a free kettle.)
JAS84
Posts: 471
Joined: Fri 12 Aug, 2011 10.23
Location: Hull, UK

thegeek wrote: Fri 10 Jul, 2020 06.23
Martin Phillp wrote: Thu 09 Jul, 2020 18.22
However, I wouldn't put it past Boots in the end to close some of the smaller community based stores in the future.
Are a lot of these not also acquisitions? I thought Boots had a bit of a policy of buying up pharmacies to stop the competition buying them.
(I'm not sure if closing a pharmacy needs some sort of consultation, depending on other services in the area)
They'd have also acquired a lot of stores when they merged with Alliance. My local Alliance branch, trading as Selles became Boots, and the old smaller Boots premises were sold to Co-Operative. But I'd wager that sort of thing didn't happen everywhere, for precisely that reason, they won't want to create competition.
JAS84
Posts: 471
Joined: Fri 12 Aug, 2011 10.23
Location: Hull, UK

The National Holidays brand has been bought. The new owner JG Travel plans to rehire the drivers and run most of the same trips starting next year, but isn't taking responsibility for the previous company's debts.
https://www.travelmole.com/news_feature ... id=2043493
Martin Phillp
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Joined: Wed 11 May, 2011 01.28

Byron has been acquired with 31 restaurants closing, leaving the new owner with 20.

https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/byro ... 1596213239
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