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Editor's column

Inspiring excellence - 25 Aug 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] After 23 years at the helm of Truworths, CEO Michael Mark will be stepping down in June next year. In the meantime, the company will be hunting for a suitable candidate to fill Mark's shoes - could it be you? The SACSC held its annual congress in Cape Town last week, where SA's best-of-the-best in retail design and development was honoured at the 2014 RDDAs. read more

Trading and trending - 18 Aug 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Trade sales data for June are in, with retail sales remaining unchanged year-on-year, while wholesale trade and food and beverage income have increased. Coming up this week is the annual SASCS Congress, which starts on Wednesday at the CTICC. Trends are on the agenda with CBRE's Peter Gold discussing what consumers expect from shopping centres and retailers, and Broll launching its Retail Consumer Survey 2014. read more

Oh, boy(cott) - 11 Aug 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Woolworths has somehow found itself becoming the bullseye in the dartboard targeted by consumers who want to see South African retailers remove Israeli-imported products from store shelves. While the retail chain is in no way the only one to have been approached by incensed customers, Woolworths found itself in the spotlight as protesters picketed outside its stores all over the country this weekend, earning itself the Twitter topic #boycottWoolworths as well as a Facebook page. read more

Bigger, better, faster, more... miles - 4 Aug 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] As some of you may already know, I'm a huge fan of the online retail revolution, for all of the benefits Martin Janse van Rensburg mentions here. But, as anyone who shops online knows, sometimes coordinating collections can be a bit difficult. read more

Fashion and food trends - 28 Jul 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Last week saw the release of Brand Finance's Top 50 most valuable South African brands, as well as the opening of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Cape Town. If you missed the fashion shows, check out some of the creations from KLuK CDGT's collection here. While a lack of sales is an obvious reason for the failure of small businesses, Brad Sugars looks at the reasons behind poor trade. Speaking of sales, Woolworths has finally been granted the unconditional purchase of the Australian Country Road brand. And finally, in research, Philips has released its research report on eating trends and favourite foods during Iftar, throughout the month of Ramadan. read more

Three strikes and they're out? - 21 Jul 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] This must be the only country with a 'Strike Season' - with strikes too often being accompanied by intimidation, violence (including murder) and destruction of property. The automotive industry is no stranger to strikes, but now David Furlonger asks whether it's all not becoming a dangerous gamble for the SA motor industry? Unions seem convinced that multinational motor companies are too deeply embedded in SA to walk away. read more

Small operators can take on big gorillas - 14 Jul 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Big companies hold many of the cards, but not all of them. read more

Pop-up shop for the homeless goes global - 7 Jul 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Good news on the CSI front is that The Street Store, a local pop-up shop for the homeless has gone global - from China to Cape Town, Brussels to Bangladesh, Florida to France, Mexico to Melbourne. Whether you use the service or not, you're still paying. read more

Tapping into the unbanked - 30 Jun 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] While official retail figures indicated a slowdown in growth recently, there is a part of the economy that is flying under the radar, which could attribute to up to 40% of retail spend. This is the cash economy, or 'grey money' sector, that is created by people earning and trading in cash which never goes through formal systems such as a banks. read more

Time to incentivise - 23 Jun 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Although retail trade sales for April came in better than expected last week, the 1.8% year-on-year growth is certainly no reason to put up our feet and relax. Consumers are still under pressure and we need to keep working on novel ways to keep them coming back. read more

Present and future retail success - 9 Jun 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Over this last week, Laine Barnard has had a look at the story of the African consumer, as well as discussed the future of sustainable retail design in Africa. Callie van der Merwe told delegates of the 4th annual SACSC Research Conference how consumer behaviour effects design decisions. read more

Know your shoppers inside out - 2 Jun 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] The days are noticeably shorter; the air, clearly colder. With the obvious inclination to stay indoors during winter, the question arises: will shoppers flock to the malls, or will they shop from the comfort of their couches? The GIBS Primedia Unlimited Retail Shoppertunities study offers some insights into what draws consumers into malls, how to get them into your store and keep them coming back. read more

Crystal ball of retail - 26 May 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] When out shopping, it's unusual to find me not using my phone. Whether it's just for basic price/quantity calculations, snapping pictures for a friend's opinion, or for something more online intensive like store or brand price comparisons and product reviews. read more

Creating the sale - 19 May 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] All right, so you've set up the "Sale" and other digital signage, the cardboard product cut-outs and the POP displays; now all there is to do is sit back and wait for consumers to buy the goods on promotion. But they're not. read more

The tipping point - 12 May 2014

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] We're not even halfway through the year but in retail, it seems it's never too early to start planning for the festive season. Marketing strategies, new products and, of course, service. Last week we had a look at the importance of good service. read more

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