Will retailers be cheering this festive season?

Will retailers be cheering this festive season?

Commenting on the prospects for retailers in the run-up to Christmas, Paul Martin, UK head of retail at KPMG.


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Commenting on the prospects for retailers in the run-up to Christmas, Paul Martin, UK head of retail at KPMG, said:

“There is no denying that retailers have had a troublesome few months recently, making the final push towards Christmas all the more vital in determining overall success or failure. Indeed, some retailers make the vast majority of their annual profits during these few weeks alone.

“Thankfully the bout of political uncertainty is now seemingly behind us post-election, albeit Brexit is yet to be executed. This may well result in a resurgence of consumer confidence for the time being, which in turn will encourage shoppers to finally make the purchases that they may have been putting off in recent months. In any case, Christmas is usually a time when festivities trump traditional reason, and retailers will be trying to make up for lost ground.

“In the final days before Christmas, shoppers will be focussed on buying last minute gifts and ensuring their cupboards are adequately stocked for the festivities. Alongside the classic gifting categories like health and beauty or fashion, this period will be prime time for the grocery sector to win favour with customers. The competition among the food and drink players is so fierce currently, but customer choice is likely to boil down to quality, price, convenience as well as longstanding loyalties. Christmas trading reports in January will reveal who had the winning combination of these drivers.

“Our high streets will also see some more action too in the coming days, as even online delivery can prove risky against the ticking clock – physical retail still has the advantage of immediate fulfilment. What’s more, with Christmas falling on a Wednesday, shoppers have both a whole weekend and two weekdays to fire through their shopping lists. The key question among the retailers though is; can sales rebound enough to make 2019 profitable in its entirety?”


Notes to editors:

For media enquiries, please contact:

Simon Wilson, KPMG Corporate Communications
T: 020 7 311 6651
M: 077853 73397
E: simon.wilson@kpmg.co.uk

About KPMG in the UK

KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 22 offices across the UK with approximately 17,600 partners and staff. The UK firm recorded a revenue of £2.40 billion in the year ended 30 September 2019. KPMG is a global network of professional firms providing Audit, Tax, and Advisory services. It operates in 154 countries and has 200,000 professionals working in member firms around the world. The independent member firms of the KPMG network are affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative ("KPMG International"), a Swiss entity. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such.

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