The Kalibrate retail round-up: September 2022

In this monthly feature, we look across the industry and mainstream news to uncover some stories of note that we think are worth your attention.

Kalibrate works with a diverse range of retail organizations, so we always have our ear to the ground to see how the environment is evolving. This helps us understand the challenges and opportunities facing the brands we support, but it also helps us keep across the news, innovations, transformations, trials, and tribulations, within retail concepts.

Store closures at the lowest level for seven years

Positive news for the UK high street as accounting giant PwC says store closures are at their lowest level in seven years. While openings are still below pre-Covid levels and uncertainty persists, PwC believes this is evidence of more people shopping and eating out. The accountancy firm flags takeaways, restaurants, amusements arcades, and DIY shops as being the fastest-growing categories.  

Read more on PWC


Restaurant franchising after COVID: A Story of resiliency and rebound 

More happy tales for those in the QSR franchising space (and those of us who like eating in QSR spaces) came from QSR magazine, a happy space for QSR news. The restaurant industry publication reported that franchising expanded 3.2% compound growth between 2015 and 2021, and franchising as a portion of food service grow around 4% per year during that period.  

Taking a bigger slice of a bigger overall pie is where most business operators want to be (and so do the rest of us when the pie is less metaphorical), but ensuring restaurants are not oversaturating their markets requires a robust approach to performance thresholds to generate solid supportable analysis. As ever, those with the best understanding of their customers are best placed to continue their growth sustainably.  

Read the article from QSR Magazine


For the love of luxury: The renaissance of luxury retail in the United States 

Brokerage JLL is reporting that the luxury retail industry is experiencing a strong bounce back with U.S sales rising 8.5% in 2021. As online luxury sales boomed from 2019 to 2021, this was not reflected in a downturn in physical stores. Impressively, single-branded storefronts also grew their market share during that period. JLL believes continued e-commerce penetration will increase the need for quality in-store experience. Product installations, art showcases, and upscale dining options are suggested as possible avenues to give customers that little bit extra.  

Grab your copy of the report here 


What Kroger, Walmart, and Target learned from China’s Alibaba about grocery’s future 

CNBC has provided a useful charted history of the ‘New Retail’ model pioneered by Alibaba in China. Characterizing the shift as a complete integration of offline and online channels, same-day delivery, app sales, and restaurants in store, the article cites the tipping point in the US as Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods Markets in 2017.  

Read more from CNBC


Retail consumers in the U.S. spent more on potatoes 

As lovers of all things data, we simply couldn’t ignore this piece from the incomparably titled Potato News Today, the home of ‘No-nonsense, no-frills news stories from around the world*’. 

*as long as it’s the world of potatoes

The main takeaway is that consumer prices for potatoes have trended upwards by 10.5% in the year to June 2022 and volumes have declined. There’s all manner of slicing, dicing, mashing, and deep-frying of potato data in this piece and it’s absolutely worth your attention.  

Visit Potato News Today for more


Costco hot dog and soda combo latest 

MarketWatch is carrying the scoop that Costco’s fourth-quarter results presentation contained a bite-sized nugget about the anticipated pricing trajectory of its much-loved hot dog/soda combination: it’s staying put at $1.50.  

Beyond meat in bread, Costco has also indicated it’s unlikely to increase its membership fees given historically high inflation and the impact on consumers.  

Read more on Market Watch

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