A round up of the best fashion business stories from the weekend’s newspapers.
- Next chief executive Simon Wolfson backed a VAT increase to help tackle Britain’s debt crisis, the Sunday Times reported. He said: ”As long as the retail industry is given plenty of notice, say January 2011, this is manageable. Ironically, the boost to sterling from a credible deficit reduction plan could well offset some inflationary pressure from VAT.”
- JJB Sports chief executive Keith Jones has made the first in what is understood to be a series of key appointments to boost his senior team, the Mail on Sunday reported. Former Footlocker executive Ron Rome’s appointment as the company’s retail director is expected to be announced later this month.
- Morrisons may take on its rivals and start to sell clothing in its supermarkets if a trial later this month with Peacocks proves a success, the Mail on Sunday reported. It will initially test sales at one supermarket in Bradford, West Yorkshire, but it could be extended to further stores at the end of this year.
- Whistles’ sales this year are currently 20% higher than in 2009 and turnover now stands at approximately £45m, according to The Times, which ran an interview with Jane Shepherdson, chief executive of the womenswear chain.
- Rigby and Peller’s autumn 10 production schedule has been held up after prototypes from the lingerie collection went missing. According to The Independent, the lingerie company lent samples to singer Lady Gaga for her tour but they were lost in transit on the way back from New York.
- The stepson of Arcadia boss Sir Philip Green has agreed to buy 21 apartment blocks across central London from Lloyds Banking Group in a deal worth an estimated £400m, the Sunday Times reported. The sale is understood to be the largest residential transaction in Britain since the credit crunch.
- Sainsbury’s is expected to announce a 15% rise in pre-tax profits over the year to the end of March, the Sunday Telegraph reported. However, speculation that Sainsbury’s has suffered a similar slowdown to Morrisons will not be dampened as the supermarket won’t reveal its trading since the year end.