Business Briefing

50.3m shoppers to go on £4.54bn spending splurge this week

Homebase gardening products on sale at Next, beers on tap in rooms at new BrewDog hotel, and other breaking business news

1

Retail 

Shop ’til you drop: £600m to be spent in stores today

Millions of shoppers will storm the high street from today with non-essential stores in England reopening for the first time since January. According to a report by VoucherCodes and the Centre for Retail Research, it’s estimated that £600m will be spent in stores on the first day of trading by seven million consumers. 

The study predicts a steady increase in shopper numbers and sales as the week progresses and it’s forecasted that 50.3m consumers will spend £4.54bn in the first seven days of reopening.

Sales for the week commencing 12 April are expected to show a 4.5% increase on the same week in 2019, Yahoo! Finance reports. And the peak shopping day will come on Saturday with spending expected to break the £1bn mark as a result of 10.8m people hitting the high street.

2

Retail 

Homebase gardening products will be sold in six Next outlets

Consumers shopping in select Next stores will be able to pick up some Homebase gardening gear as well as the latest fashion after a partnership was announced between the two retail brands.    

The new venture, “Garden by Homebase at Next”, will be launched in six Next stores in Shoreham, Ipswich, Warrington, Camberley, Bristol and Sheffield. Products such as pots, plants and garden tools will be on sale and Homebase staff will also be on hand to offer gardening tips and advice.

3

Entertainment  

Movie fans rev up for summer drive-in cinema events 

It will be a blockbuster summer at drive-in cinemas following a surge in bookings for outdoor movie events. 

Eventbrite said the run-up to Christmas last year saw the “peak drive-in” achieved with 50,000 people attending about 1,000 events. However, the UK is on track to hit the peak drive-in mark during the summer months in 2021. 

There has been an “explosion” in the number of events being listed to run from this week, says The Guardian. And the Christmas figures from last year are likely to be surpassed in the coming months as a “combination of warmer weather and continued restrictions on many other activities fuel the popularity of drive-in cinema”.

4

Housing market 

Ultra-wealthy spend big on ‘super-prime’ properties in London

London was the most popular city in the world last year for residential “super-prime” property sales above $10m (£7.27m), according to a study by estate agent Knight Frank. The English capital city saw $3.7bn (£2.69bn) transacted at this level, outpacing usual rivals New York and Hong Kong.

Buyers were “lured by the weak pound and the end of the UK’s Brexit saga”, the Financial Times says. And the influx of money came from overseas with Russian, French and Chinese buyers “particularly active”.

“The story all last year was that people were moving out of cities,” said Liam Bailey, global head of research at Knight Frank. “But quietly there were some big purchases taking place.”

5

Food & Drink 

BrewDog will open the DogHouse hotel and bar in Edinburgh 

BrewDog will open the DogHouse hotel and bar in Edinburgh 

BrewDog

Beers on tap in all rooms at BrewDog’s new ‘DogHouse’ hotel

The year 2020 was not one to be remembered for the hospitality industry, but for craft beer company BrewDog there was plenty to say “cheers” about.

Despite the widespread hospitality shutdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, BrewDog saw an “explosion” in online sales with revenues growing 10%, City A.M. reports. The Scottish firm said revenues came in at £238m for the year, “driven by a 13-fold increase in digital sales” and a record shipping of 242m cans of beer. 

BrewDog has also announced plans for a “beer-themed hotel” in Edinburgh’s Old Town, the BBC says. Opening in Q3 this year the “Doghouse” boutique hotel and bar will have “beer on tap in all the rooms, mini-bars filled with the best beers in the planet and fridges in the shower for shower beers”, co-founder James Watt said on Twitter

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