Covid 'accelerated' closure of High Street shops such as Debenhams, retail expert warns

1 December 2020, 19:43

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

With the news Debenhams is set to start a liquidation process after JD Sports confirmed it had pulled out of a possible rescue deal, Iain Dale spoke to an expert about the future of the High Street.

Retail Analyst Andrew Busby said the situation was "heartbreaking," but said "we should" be thinking of this as an opportunity when asked by Iain.

But Andrew told LBC that the Covid pandemic was "accelerated what was already happening" to the High Street.

He did give some hope for shoppers though suggesting we would see shops regenerate themselves to adapt to new ways of doing business.

The 242-year-old department store chain said its administrators have "regretfully" decided to start winding down operations while continuing to seek offers "for all or parts of the business".

It is understood that the collapse of rescue talks were partly linked to the administration of Arcadia Group, which is the biggest operator of concessions in Debenhams stores.

But retail expert Andrew told LBC he thought that the High Street was "evolving" and that new types of businesses would come to fill those gaps.

The expert agreed with Iain when he asked if some shops were missing out because they have failed to innovate or invest in online sales.

Watch the whole interesting and insightful exchange in the video at the top of the page.