Market analysts have today insisted that the global recession will not lead to the end of the current High Street model as we know it, and that the future of UK shopping has a place for both nationals and independents.
In its latest white paper, the KPMG/Synovate Retail Think Tank refutes claims that the High Street is destined to be dominated by a small number of very large retailers, citing studies that show large retailers can struggle to offer the cohesion smaller firms can.
Contrary to popular belief, we do not predict that the UK’s shopping centres and High Streets will become dominated by a small group of very large retailers in the future,” the RTT stated.
Yes, trading conditions are exceptionally tough at the moment, with a number of big name insolvencies both before and after Christmas, and this undoubtedly has an impact in terms of competition. Having examined the effects of downturns in the 1970s and 1990s we also recognise that recessions have traditionally acted as a catalyst for greater market concentration.
The RTT still firmly believes there will always be constraints which prevent the sector becoming dominated by a very small group of big companies. No single retailer can be ‘all things to all people’ meaning that retail remains varied and competitive and there will continue to be a role for niche players despite the continued, exceptional growth of the very biggest companies.”