Hammerson’s Retail Tracker (HART), which monitors sales activity across its shopping centres, reported a like for like sales uplift of 4.2% yoy for the seven week period ended 13 February 2016, as shoppers took advantage of New Year sales bargains.
For the week ended 13th February 2016 alone, like for like sales increased 1.8% yoy, with categories such as jewellery (+6%) andhealth & beauty (+3.2%) boosted by the rush to treat loved ones for Valentine’s Day. And following difficult trading conditions for fashion retailers towards the end of last year, mixed fashion also saw an uplift of 4.9%.
Shoppers also headed out of town to take advantage of the sales, with Hammerson’s retail park portfolio continuing to welcome increased numbers of visitors, reporting a 4.2% uplift for the week ended 13 February 2016.
Regional “HART” map
Based on sales from its regional shopping centre portfolio, Hammerson can reveal its very own “HART map”, detailing the different gifting habits of Cupids right across the UK. Shoppers in the South West took the most traditional approach to Valentine’s Day, with sales of gifts & cards rising 9.9% at Cabot Circus, Bristol, and 6.6% at Westquay, Southampton. Shoppers in Birmingham were feeling especially generous, with jewellery sales up over 25% at Bullring. The centre saw some jewellers offering up to 20% off diamonds, and limited edition Valentine’s watches sold particularly well. Women in both Scotland and London were treated to pampering goodies, as sales in the health & beauty category surged 9.9% at Union Square, Aberdeen, and 8.2% at Brent Cross.
EO David Atkins said: “It’s been a fantastic start to the year, with sales up 4.2% as consumer sentiment continues to strengthen across the UK. Valentine’s Day is traditionally a key date in the retail calendar and it’s great to see from our HART data that shoppers are feeling confident enough to splash out on higher ticket items, such as jewellery and luxury watches. Looking ahead, we anticipate that this trend in consumer confidence will continue.”