More than half UK retailers have no Brexit plans in place, reveals survey

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12th June 2019 11:02 - Retail

More than half UK retailers have no Brexit plans in place: A survey of retailers by Global-e has revealed that despite the UK voting on leaving the EU three years ago, 57% still have not put plans in place for Brexit.

The poll of decision makers also found that more than half (54%) are feeling concerned about the ongoing uncertainty surrounding Brexit and a third (33%) report a decline in sales since the 2016 referendum result. Despite the fall in sales, 43% said they anticipate having to raise prices after Brexit takes place and 52% believe their business will suffer due to currency fluctuations post Brexit.

Almost half of those polled are expecting a collapse in consumer confidence after the UK officially departs the EU, with 43% believing they will experience challenges when it comes to sourcing products. Just over a third also said that they will consider rationing products if faced with shortages when it comes to available stock.

The survey also found that more than 70% of retailers polled have no immediate plans to move some or all of their business to a country within the EU, although for 22% this is being considered as an option, and 2% have already done so.

Now the Brexit date has been moved to 31 October, 38% of respondents said they fear the usually prosperous Christmas online trading period, which includes the November/December run-up as well as Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Christmas Day/Boxing Day will be impacted. Larger retailers expressed greater concern (56%) than SMEs (34%).

Looking at sellers who already trade internationally (67% of those polled), 38% have seen growth in cross-border online sales since the 2016 referendum result. Although 58% of retail decision makers acknowledged that selling internationally is likely to become more elaborate, 57% have confidence that following the UK's EU departure, their business can thrive in an international market.

Nir Debbi, Co-Founder and CMO of Global-e, said: "Retailers don’t need to move abroad to sell abroad, and whatever happens come October, there is huge potential for UK retailers to grow their brand globally..."

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