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Retail round up - The Sunday papers

Pets at Home does flotation exercise,Starbucks looks beyond US for instant result, Green trims BHS in store shake-up, Fears of inflation surge played down, Virgin Money hires for high street push, Sales fall and restructuring hits Burberry's figures, High Street chiefs in £5bn buy-out scramble...


Retail round up - The Sunday papers

Pets at Home does flotation exercise,Starbucks looks beyond US for instant result, Green trims BHS in store shake-up, Fears of inflation surge played down, Virgin Money hires for high street push, Sales fall and restructuring hits Burberry's figures, High Street chiefs in £5bn buy-out scramble...

The Sunday Telegraph

According to sources close to the situation, advisers to Pets at Home, the UK's largest pet retailer held pre-marketing discussions with a number of UK fund managers last week. Their support would be vital if Bridgepoint, owners of the company since 2004, chooses to list the business. Sources said up to 20 fund managers were consulted on how much support they would give a flotation, with a number being "very impressed by the management team and the business." January 25 is understood to the deadline for bidders to submit offers for the business, after which the owners will decide which route to take.

Coffee giant Starbucks will deliver its best quarterly figures in two years this week as Howard Schultz travels to London to begin a European charm offensive.Mr Schultz, chairman and chief executive of the company, is expected to reveal first quarter net income of around $217m (£133m), according to Morgan Stanley, compared to $64.3m for the same period last year and up from $150m in the last quarter.

The Sunday Times
The retail billionaire Sir Philip Green is closing down 10 of his BHS department stores after striking a deal with Primark, the fast-growing fashion retailer, to take over the shop leases.The move is part of a broader shake-up of his property estate, following the decision to merge the 185-strong BHS chain into the rest of his Arcadia retail empire last year. The 10 BHS stores employ 350 people but the closures will be phased over 12 months to give staff enough time to find new jobs. Staff were told of the decision on Friday night. Those that will close include stores in Harrogate, King’s Lynn, Guildford, Folkestone and Winchester.

Britains inflation surge, to be revealed in figures this week, will be short-lived, according to a new forecast from the Ernst & Young Item club, which works with the Treasury model. Figures on Tuesday are set to show a sharp rise in inflation to 2.7%, from 1.9% in November. The rate is predicted to rise further this month as a result of the return of Vat to 17.5% and could prompt an open letter from Mervyn King, the Bank of England governor, to Alistair Darling, the chancellor. Economists at Citigroup predict inflation will rise to 4% by the summer. Willem Buiter, its chief economist and a former member of the Bank’s monetary policy committee, said in an interview with The Sunday Times that the Bank would be forced to raise interest rates if inflation stayed above target.

Virgin Money, the financial-services business owned by Sir Richard Branson, has hired three senior executives to support its move into high-street banking.The move comes ahead of an expected bid by the group for the network of 300 branches put up for sale by Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS).Finlay Williamson, a former RBS executive, has been hired as finance director. Ian Cornelius, former Bradford & Bingley director of savings, will be banking director. Marcus Ezekiel, a former legal executive at Lloyds, has been parachuted in as commercial director.

The Independent on Sunday
Up market clothes retailer Burberry is forecast to report a 19 per cent crash in sales compared to last year after a tough trading season.Its chief executive, Angela Ahrendts, is likely to announce at the third quarter results on Tuesday that its retail division, which includes directly operated stores, will post a healthy like-for-like sales increase of about 3.5 per cent to around £340m. By comparison, sales fell by 2 per cent in the first half.

The Mail on Sunday
Retailers are gearing up for £5 billion worth of corporate deals to cash in on the Christmas trading feelgood factor.Matalan, New Look, Pets at Home, Ocado and Supergroup owner of fashion brand Superdry are all being touted for sale either to private equity firms or stock market investors.Negotiations have already stepped up a gear after many retailers reported better-than-expected results. Decisions to launch the first deals will be made as soon as next month.


Multi Channel Retail Summit preview -What techniques can we use to measure the effectiveness of our multichannel strategies?

Just one of the questions that have been submitted by delegates prior to Tuesdays event to be answered by our panel of experts. Other questions include:

What will the multichannel customer of the future look like and what will they expect?
How can we best improve the customer experience across a variety of channels?
How can we best place multichannel at the heart of our company culture?
How can we effectively achieve a central view of the multichannel customer’s journey?
What lessons have been learned to best manage multichannel stock control?
How should we approach the issue of pricing within our multichannel strategies?
What new methods can we use to squeeze the most profit from our websites?
How should customer service adapt to a multichannel retail organisation?
How can we maximise loyalty within our multichannel strategy?
How can we use social media to maxmise profits?
How far away are we from mobile being a key channel to market?
Which new opportunities does TV retailing offer?
Which new payment options should we be looking at to maximise customer experience? 
How can we surpass our customer’s delivery expectations?
Will traditional retailers who don’t adopt different channels still exist in the future? 
How can we maximise convenience for the consumer in the future?
How can we best develop our employees’ skills to cater for a multichannel world?
How can we best minimise the cost of multichannel expansion?
How should we approach loss prevention within our multichannel strategy?
What are the key pitfalls traditional retailers make when moving to multichannel?

We'll be reporting live from the event on Tuesday the 19th January. For more information on the summit click here

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