Irish Retail Industry Productivity Review Q1 2017

Damian Gleeson Damian Gleeson

With the United Kingdom facing into an election, the impact of Brexit being felt, and hyper intense competition remaining in most retail sectors, the outlook is a challenging one. There is a very real need for cost curtailment in the Irish retail industry, however with commercial rents remaining stubbornly high and in some cases rent increases being sought, the outlook is bleak. Some operators are being pushed to the edge and more retail industry failure can be expected.


  • Irish retail industry experiences third consecutive quarter of decline;
  • childrenswear sector declined -10.15% with a dropping birth rate and intense competition to blame;
  • Irish Jewellery sector continues to struggle recording a -6.91% decline in the quarter;
  • January 2017 trading down -1.79% against January 2016 underlining the continued weakness of the January sales;
  • Irish footwear market experienced a poor quarter with sales declines of -8.83%. January 2017 was the worst January trading in Footwear since 2009; and
  • March 2017 was a particularly weak month with sales erosion of -2.64% partially as a result of when Easter fell and also due to accelerated consumer sentiment erosion.