In a recent interview with City A.M., Theo Paphitis, the former Dragons’ Den star and head of three high street retailers including Ryman, Robert Dyas and Boux Avenue, slams UK government for "screwing" the retail sector.
Business rates, the national living wage, and the apprenticeship levy combined with the fall in the value of the pound following the Brexit vote he says have all significantly impacted retailers.
“We expected a vast reduction in our business rates bill, but instead it went up. Also you don’t throw in something like a national living wage rise overnight… and the apprenticeship levy is another ill-thought strategy that is costing struggling retailers,” he says.
According to Mr Paphitis, retail businesses failure because brands don't adapt quickly enough to changing times.
“There are always corrections and heritage brands need to change with the times. Consumer habits are changing so fast so unless you invest in a business and take into account the changing habits you will lose your business and customers.
“You do have to be on your toes and reinvest in your business and you have to have a vision,” he says, adding that retailers need to “hunker down and get through” Brexit.
At Beavis Morgan, our specialist advisers to the retail sector understand that, in this competitive environment, retail business owners must work hard to win customer loyalty, adapt to the ever-changing customer demands, increase productivity and strengthen their market position.
We work with a number of retail businesses, helping them with strategic planning, business turnaround and improving business performance for the future.