Debenhams to file for administration following coronavirus pandemic
Debenhams has voluntarily entered administration for the second time in a year to fend off a collapse into liquidation following the coronavirus outbreak, which has adversely affected retailers. Following the recent government announcement of a furlough scheme, the majority of Debenhams staff are currently being paid under the coronavirus job retention scheme, which pays 80% of a worker’s salary up to £2,500 a month.

Covid-19 comfort eating to bring health awareness that will shape 2020s
The second wave of stockpiling that is for the ‘new essentials’, anything from cheap booze to fatty foods, is creating a bigger global trend in comfort eating and takeout.

It should be noted that this is not for all consumers. There has equally been a rise in home gym equipment and home cooking, which is generally perceived as healthier, as well as ‘positive movements’ like rooftop raves and dancing on balconies as communities’ support one another.

H&M’s China performance reveals how Covid-19 impacts retail post-peak
On Friday 3 April H&M published revealing weekly sales figures for its China division, providing other fashion brands with insight on how sales will be impacted in particularly hard hit Covid-19 markets over the next few months. The key takeaway highlights how retailers must carefully consider their store reopening schedule post quarantine and isolation measures, and whether consumer demand post peak-pandemic will be sufficient to support the cost of operating all stores or if reopenings should be phased more gradually.

Tesco well placed to deal with Covid-19 disorder following renewed UK focus
Tesco has suggested a 30% uplift demand over the “first few weeks” of the crisis as shoppers panic bought, in line with our view of an updated UK grocery market growth forecast of 7.1% for 2020. At this point, Tesco should be praised for its quick introduction of reactive measures: improving instore safety; financial support for employees where needed; special resources for NHS and other key workers and the hiring of 45,000 new colleagues since 20th March.

Demand for Tesco delivery slots continues to outpace supply
UK supermarket giant Tesco said that while it was increasing its online grocery delivery capacity by more than 20%, it was still unable to meet demand for a nation staying home. According to the company’s chief executive, Dave Lewis, 85%-90% of all food bought will require a visit to a store, despite its weekly number of home delivery slots increasing from 660,000 to 805,000 (approximately 22%).

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ASOS is better positioned than many to face impact of Covid-19
Sales over the past three weeks, since lockdown and isolation measures have been implemented across many of its key markets, have declined 20%-25%, as customers struggle to justify making new purchases. However, ASOS’ broad product offer across casualwear, loungewear and athleisure puts it in a better position than some of its competitors that rely heavily on occasion and partywear, such as boohoo and Quiz.