Written by: Keith Tully
Published: 10th July 2015
The number of retailers that entered administration around the UK between January and June was almost a third lower this year than during the same period of 2014.
That’s according to figures on the subject compiled by Deloitte, which puts the number of retail administrations for the six-month period at 45, down from 66 last year.
Deloitte’s numbers also point to an ongoing downward trend in terms of how many British retailers are going out of business, with the first half of 2013 having seen 95 such companies enter administration.
An associated report from the firm behind the latest data suggests that retailers around the country are benefitting from the “calmer waters of a stable economy”, with Bank Fashion picked out as perhaps the only high-profile retail insolvency of the year so far.
As well as a more stable economy, many retailers have reportedly been able to avoid insolvency or administration by reaching workable deals with creditors through both formal and informal communications.
Deloitte’s head of retail Ian Geddes rates the overall outlook for Britain’s high street businesses as positive and suggested that the benefits will be felt by companies in the retail sector if consumer finances continue to improve.
However, Geddes also said that retailers should be working hard to ensure that they can meet the needs and demands of their customers consistently through both in-store and online channels.
“Consumers do not shop channels – they shop retailers and brands. Therefore it is essential that retailers continue to focus on how they integrate online and in-store retail to best serve their customers,” he said.
He went on to suggest that the increasing use of mobile and online retail services among UK consumers will leave some retailers needed to reduce the number of stores they operate in order to remain competitive.
Others will need to completely rethink the way they approach the challenge of meeting customer needs, he said.
Last month, the women’s fashion retailer East was rescued through a pre-pack administration but the reorganised company said it was to shed over 150 jobs and close 19 stores around the UK in the process.
Back in January, Bank Fashion called in administrators after suffering heavy losses and it was decided that a solvent turnaround strategy would not be feasible.