Paul Martin, UK head of Retail at KPMG comments on the Chancellor’s Autumn Budget.
Commenting on the Chancellor’s Autumn Budget, Paul Martin, UK head of retail at KPMG, said:
“There is no denying that Britain’s retail industry has been battling abrasive headwinds, and thankfully this year’s Autumn Budget took note of this unfortunate fact. As the bout of store closures, profit warnings and casualties this year will attest to, retail is undergoing fundamental structural change, and many are struggling to keep up with the pace of change.
“It is often smaller, non-food retail on our local high street that appears to be taking the biggest bashing. As such, the Chancellor’s measures for smaller businesses will provide some much-needed relief for those eligible. Similarly, the money allocated for councils to reinvent disused retail space will help add to the high streets sense of community if executed correctly. That said, our mid-market non-food retail offering in the UK remains overcapacity, so it’s likely the business Darwinism in this area will continue.
“It is the talk of the digital services tax from April 2020 that holds the greatest potential to rewrite how the retail game is played. Online market places have often been able to rise above the problems faced by traditional legacy players or independents. Retailers will naturally be keen to have sight of greater detail on this, meanwhile consumers may question how such a tax won’t result increased pricing for them.”
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