Big-brand corporate recovery filters into retail closure stats

Published on March 1, 2013 by Crawfords Accounting

The big-brand corporate recovery headlines of the past year have started to make their presence felt in figures relating to retail sector closures.

New data from PricewaterhouseCoopers shows the direct impact of troubles at retail chains like JJB Sports, Game and Clintons Cards.

All underwent substantial restructuring in 2012 as part of corporate recovery efforts, with many branches closing.

It is perhaps no surprise, then, that sports goods, computer games and card shops were all among the retail segments to see substantial falls in their total number of outlets in 2012.

Overall, 1,779 closures were recorded in 2012 – and as a net balance, that includes the offsetting effects of any new stores that opened.

This compares with just 174 a year earlier, a tenfold rise in troubled retailers who chose, or were forced, to close their doors.

Mike Jervis, retail specialist and insolvency partner at PwC, says: “The failed chains generally shared two problems: too many stores, and too little multi-channel activity.”

In contrast, austerity-related disciplines including pawn shops, pound stores and payday loan lenders have all seen new premises open in the last year, further indicating how the economic turbulence is reshaping the high street.

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