High Street chain collapse sweepstake

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WillPS
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Thu 29 Dec, 2011 23.48

HMV is absolutely up the creek. Zavvi stores always seemed busy, and they hadn't made any money in the last 5 years they existed. Woolies were always busy - didn't mean they were making any money.
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all new Phil
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 02.01

I think the way to go for HMV is online and less but better stores. The ones in Central London are fantastic - well stocked, well staffed and they do a good job with the specialist stuff. An online presence plus a smaller number of flagship stores in key cities would surely keep them profitable - there will always be some demand for what they sell, I just think they need to be smarter about how they do it.
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wells
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 02.49

1. Thornton's Stores - Never anyone in any of them except just before Easter and you can get most of the stuff in places like Wilkinson and Poundland which is odd as I've always have thought of Thornton's as something that thinks of itself as a luxury brand. Perhaps it'll get bought out by one of the international confectionary giants when they get rid of the stores.

2. BHS - I just don't see where it's place in the market is. Perhaps some stores could remain in a smaller capacity just as outlet for other Acadia brands a bit like Outfit in retail parks.

3. Robert Dyas

I also agree with DVB on Homebase and Argos. Well I don't think they will fully merge but I think there will be a degree synergy between the two brands with Argos branding it's gardening and DIY products as Homebase and some Homebase stores being cut in size to accommodate Agros stores or departments.
wells
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 02.59

James L H wrote: As for WHSmith, I wouldn't miss it if it went. One of my pet hates with the shop is the way they try to sell you other sh*t you don't need when they are scanning through the products. For example, I went in a few days ago to buy a paper and got offered Sellotape, Chewits or Terrys Chocolate Oranges for £2. If I wanted to buy a crushed Chocolate Orange I would have picked one up myself. Further to my horror, the cashier then stuffed a few WHSmith coupons into the paper meaning I had to find the page she placed them in so I could chuck them into the bin on the way out.
Poundland do this as well.

It's the fact you've always got some charity, insurance company or injury lawyers at the front door in my local WHSmith as you walk in and out trying to get money off you, and they've even stopped people using the back door so you can't avoid them. Even worse the Stratford on Avon town centre store seems to have had about 20% of it's magazine section replaced with an area for some no win no fee injury lawyers to bother folk.

Also Clintons, ours is almost as big as an average Aldi yet there is never more than about 3 or 4 customers in there, how does that work?
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tillyoshea
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 09.41

SomeRandomStuff wrote: Homebase and Argos ?!? Not likely... the stores operate in completely different ways, and are not compatible for a merger, whilst both companies could cut any stock that overlaps such as Outdoor Electronics & Furniture, it is more likely that they will just close stores if the bills start to bite.
They already do seem to overlap on stock quite a bit - e.g. the Colour Match range (Argos, Homebase)

And despite that, profits have crashed.

On the other hand, WHSmiths profits are up, even if their sales are down - I reckon they can ride out the storm for a while.

My predictions are:
- Mothercare / ELC closing (already pulling out of town centres, doesn't bode well)
- JJB (frankly surprised they're still around)
- Past Times (feels like it's had its day, so to speak)

I also think M&S is going to have a bad year: They seem to be doing everything humanly possible to disassemble the formula that brought them back from the brink a few years ago (e.g. over-diversification of instore brands again, alienating their younger female customers again, making their stores bland and impossible to navigate again, withdrawing other brands from their food halls again)
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Nick Harvey
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 12.34

wells wrote:Robert Dyas
My goodness, I'd forgotten all about them.

I wonder if the pointless Mr Ryan Pannell still works for them?
all new Phil
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 12.52

I read something the other day that suggested that maybe one supermarket might take over another in the next year. It didn't mention any names, however. There are rumours of Morrisons buying Iceland, but I think it was hinting at something bigger.

So there's another name for you anyway - Iceland. They'll be gone within a year I reckon, bought by Morrisons.
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Dr Lobster*
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 13.10

Yep, Iceland, a nothing place really, they do the good nice thing, but not the sort of place i'd make to effort to get to, if not a merger with Morrisons, maybe Farm Foods which seem to specialise in the same sorts of thing.

Mothercare and ELC are quite expensive (extortionate at times and reasonable at others), but they do have a niche market - as you probably know, i have two children (oldest 3, youngest 18 months) and they had quite a few toys from both of the above this year and some of their ELC branded toys you just can't get anything like or a good from anywhere else. Quite a few of the toys from there have taken quite a battering (like being flung off a high chair onto a hard floor) and still work.

and in our town there isn't that many other places to get toys now that woolworths has gone and our closest toys r us is around a 60 mile round trip away.


i'd forgotten about JJB, wasn't it moments from death a few years ago?

The thing about HMV which gets me though, is like Game, the layout of the stores are generally bad, there isn't enough space to comfortably browse, but most of all, and the shops smell of BO (well, both ours do)
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m-in-m
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 13.19

BBC News - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-16366088 wrote:The owner of toy and novelty gift chain Hawkin's Bazaar brand has gone into administration.
I never knew they were a local company.
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WillPS
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 14.30

tillyoshea wrote:
SomeRandomStuff wrote: Homebase and Argos ?!? Not likely... the stores operate in completely different ways, and are not compatible for a merger, whilst both companies could cut any stock that overlaps such as Outdoor Electronics & Furniture, it is more likely that they will just close stores if the bills start to bite.
They already do seem to overlap on stock quite a bit - e.g. the Colour Match range (Argos, Homebase)

And despite that, profits have crashed.

On the other hand, WHSmiths profits are up, even if their sales are down - I reckon they can ride out the storm for a while.

My predictions are:
- Mothercare / ELC closing (already pulling out of town centres, doesn't bode well)
- JJB (frankly surprised they're still around)
- Past Times (feels like it's had its day, so to speak)

I also think M&S is going to have a bad year: They seem to be doing everything humanly possible to disassemble the formula that brought them back from the brink a few years ago (e.g. over-diversification of instore brands again, alienating their younger female customers again, making their stores bland and impossible to navigate again, withdrawing other brands from their food halls again)
Good shout on all accounts. The M&S situation is farcical.
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marksi
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Fri 30 Dec, 2011 15.51

Barratts makes 1600 people redundant.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-16366095
The administrator of troubled shoe chain Barratts Priceless has said it has made 1,610 employees redundant.

The job losses are at the retailer's concessions within other stores in the UK and the Republic of Ireland.

Administrators Deloitte said selling the concession part of the business will "not be achieved".

However they are still trying to find a buyer for Barratt's 173 high street stores, which remain open. 18 store closures have already been announced.

Deloitte said it is working with the concession holders, which include department stores, to see if the former-employees could be re-employed in other parts of their businesses.
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