Some are going bankrupt (BHS), some are closing down (Prada, in Milan), some are going online (Macy’s): the crisis is transforming the retail world

Adieu to the boutique in Corso Venezia 3, Milan. Prada is reviewing its retail network and for 2016, it will offset the 20 new stores opened with plans to close another 25. The stores being sacrificed include the one opened in Milan 10 years ago, spanning 500 square metres. And the maison of Miuccia and Patrizio Bertelli is not the only one reforming (or, in this case, revolutionising) the ramification of its sales activities. There are two key words in distribution: the first is turnover; the second is profitability per square metre, or the efficiency of each individual store. Consumer trends are changing and the responses to the effects of the crisis are therefore different. According to the latest news, US group Macy’s, large-scale retailer with 769 points of sale, has announced that it will be moving part of its business online. Now in the fourth consecutive quarter of negative figures (the first in 2016 registered a 7.4% drop in sales, and the second a 4% drop), the giant is considering closing 100 stores and selling several of its prestigious properties in New York and San Francisco to drain resources that can be invested in online channels. In this way, part of the retail ramification is therefore becoming virtual. Instead, British retailer BHS (British Home Stores) has closed its doors forever. On Sunday 28 August, they closed the last 22 stores, while in the previous weeks, 141 stores had already met the same fate. While the chain (with an almost century-long history and 11,000 employees before the crisis) was exhaling its last breath, its controversial former chairman, Sir Philip Green, was cruising the Mediterranean in his yacht. Green, chairman of the group for 15 years before writing himself a cheque for £400 million in dividends and selling the company for a pound in 2015, faces the wrath of the political world, which in July had already placed him at the centre of a parliamentary commission for the demise of BHS.


Choose one of our subscription plans

Do you want to receive our newsletter?
Subscribe now