ANOTHER RETAILING GIANT BITES THE DUST – In just a few short months we have seen some of the largest and most respected high street retailers go out of business, these include, HMV, Jessops, Blockbusters and Comet, resulting in thousands of people losing their jobs.
This morning it was announced that the Republic clothing chain is yet another casualty as it calls in Ernst & Young as the Administrator. It is estimated that over 1,000 will lose their jobs due to the closure of 120 stores across the nation.
Management at the chain has stated that its poor performance is mainly due to having most of its stores in the northern part of England where recession has bitten the hardest. People simply do not have the spare cash to spend on clothing.
With a failing economy I feel we could yet see more well-known high street brands go to the wall as the recession bites deeper. With government continuously finding new ways to tax the public and the local council scheming to come up with new ways to extract cash for its own coffers is it any wonder why our high streets are dying?
Many of the problems retailers face is from local councils. There incessant greed, simply to fuel their own extortionate salaries and bonuses, is often directed firmly at high street businesses.
Many years ago I had a small retail shop in the heart of Lincolnshire of which I was paying over 50% of the cost of rent to the local council for council tax. On top of that I had to purchase specialist bin bags from the council at nearly £2.00 a pop otherwise they would not dispose of my rubbish. On top of that there were other restrictions that further cost my small business. I lasted just 2 years before I finally came to the conclusion that I was working 80 hours plus a week just to fuel the greed of the local council.
With the state of the economy being what it is, is it little wonder that we are seeing some iconic brands going out of business? What is also important is that many new potential start-up businesses are simply put off by the massive costs of running a retail outlet and therefore the shops in our high streets remain empty, turning a once prosperous area into little more than a rundown ghetto.
Again, I would expect to see many more high street retailers folding and if the large retailers are going to the wall then what possible chance does the small business have?