Primark sales down 30% due to Covid-19 restrictions
Primark sales fell by 30% to £2 billion in the 16 weeks to 2 January as Covid-19 trading restrictions in the UK and Europe took their toll.
The retailer currently has 305 of its 389 stores closed, including 190 shuttered in the UK.
When shops were open, sales in Primark’s stores in retail parks were higher than a year ago while sales in stores in shopping centres and regional high streets were lower. Meanwhile, there was a significant decline in footfall in shops in those city centres where there is a heavy reliance on tourism and commuters.
In a statement, Primark owner Associated British Foods said lost sales are expected to amount to £1.05 billion if all shops currently closed remained shuttered until its half year on 27 February. This is up from a previous estimate of £650 million. However, the company this would be partially mitigated by cutting costs.
Despite the impact of Covid-19, Primark still expects to add a net 0.7 million square feet of selling space in the curret financial year. This will include the oepning of five stores in Spain, three in the US, two in Italy, and one in each in the UK, France and the Netherlands,. It will also be launching a further store in Poland and a first store in Czechia in Prague.
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