So, what do you do when you’ve just finished an epic, year-long stint on the West End stage as Jean Val Jean in Les Mis? In the case of Australian vocalist Daniel Koek, you release a pure pop album.
Titled ‘High’, the album finds the singer on spectacular form. Lending his pure, meticulous accuracy and skill to songs from the worlds of pop, musical theatre, classical and more, this is a crowd-pleaser aimed purely at the mainstream.
If you’re familiar with (and enjoy) the output of the likes of Josh Groban and Andrea Bocelli, then you will love Daniel Koek just as much. It’s unlikely to convert new fans to the genre, but lovers of classical vocalists will eat this up.
Written by Harry Dean
What’s happening in #retail & with brands – trends for w/e 24th July 2015 #retailtrends #retailnews #marketingweek #eventmagazine
– AO World have reported a 6.5% increase in total revenue for the three months to 30 June 2015. Online revenue increased by 11.2% for the same period.
– DFS have reported a 7% increase in group gross sales for the year to 18 July 2015.
– John Lewis have reported a 6.9% increase in sales for the week to 18 July 2015. Fashion, Home and Electricals & Home Technology sales increased by 10.5%, 2.0% and 9.4% respectively. Sales at johnlewis.com increased by 22.6%.
– Kingfisher have reported a 4.8% increase in total sales for the 10 weeks to 11 July 2015. Like-for-like sales increased by 3.5% while UK & Ireland sales increased by 6.7% for the same period. Like-for-like sales for UK & Ireland increased by 5.5%.
– Mothercare have reported a 3.5% decrease in worldwide network sales for the 15 weeks to 11 July 2015 while total UK sales decreased by 0.9% for the same period. UK like-for-like sales increased by 1.3%.
– Paperchase have reported a 7% increase in total sales to £128m for the year to 31 January 2015. Online sales increased by 42% for the same period. (Source: Retail Week)
– United Carpets have reported revenue of £19.1m for the year to 31 March 2015. Profit before tax was reported at £1.21m while like-for-like sales increased by 2.7% for the same period.
– Waitrose have reported a 0.8% increase in sales (including petrol) for the week to 18 July 2015.
– White Stuff have reported a 13.6% increase in total sales to £131.4m for the year to 02 May 2015. Retail sales increased by 5.3% to £91.5m while like-for-like sales also increased by 5.3% for the same period. Online sales increased by 36.5% to £32.9m. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
– Zara have reported an 8.1% increase in UK sales to £494.8m for the year to 31 January 2015. Pre-tax profit increased by 45.0% to £49.2m for the same period. (Source: Retail Week)
The BRC/Springboard Footfall and Vacancies Monitor has revealed that footfall in June 2015 decreased by 1.5% compared to June 2014, down from the 1.0% fall in May 2015. Both high streets and shopping centres reported a decline, falling 2.8% and 2.4% respectively for June 2015. Footfalls in retail parks fared the best with a 2.8% increase year-on-year, an improvement on the 1.4% rise in May 2015. All regions and nations saw a decline in footfall in June 2015, however five of the seven regions reported footfall above the UK average. Northern Ireland and Wales reported a notable decline in footfall, down 3.5% and 3.0% respectively.
Clothing, Footwear & Accessories
– Ben Sherman have announced that the company has been acquired by Marquee Brands for £40.8m. (Source: The Telegraph)
– Bimba y Lola have opened their fifth 140m store at 7 Hill Street, London. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
– ECCO have announced plans to open their first store in the North East of England at Intu Metrocenter in Gateshead, as part of their UK expansion plans. The 1,750 sq. ft. store will open in later 2015. (Source: Drapers)
– SuperTrash have announced plans to open a 3,057 sq. ft. store at South John Street, Liverpool, in August 2015. (Source: Drapers)
– Thomas Sabo have opened a 860 sq. ft. store in Watford and have also acquired two 1,000 sq. ft. stores in Newcastle and Leicester, as a part of their UK wide expansion strategy. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
Electrical & Entertainment
– Moonpig.com have announced plans to extend their order cut-off time by 3 hours, to allow customers to order cards online until 7 PM on weekdays. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
Food & Drink
– Amazon UK have announced plans to launch their grocery delivery service, AmazonFresh in the London area by September 2015. (Source: The Grocer)
– Co-operative Food have announced plans for recruiting an extra 1,000 staff to fill their customer team member, team leadership and store manager roles, particularly at peak times. (Source: The Guardian)
– Dunnes have announced plans to expand their number of stores in the UK to 40, as a part of their strategy to double their presence. (Source: Retail Week)
According to research conducted by Worldpay, small business owners in retail are among the UKs hardest workers, with 75% of the owners not having enough of a work-life balance to take a holiday. The research also revealed that one out of five owners have not been able to take more than a week off in at least three years. In addition, one out of ten owners responded that the idea of even a few days leave was off-limits, unless absolutely essential. Over a fifth of small business owners in retail said they worked work seven days a week, with 36% enjoying only a six day week, just to stay afloat. Finance, cash-flow and paperwork topped the list of business headaches, with the average small business owner spending the equivalent of 48 days per year on administrative tasks.
– DFS have announced plans to trial their Dwell and Sofa workshop fascias as concessions across some of their legacy stores, in September 2015. (Source: Retail Week)
– Halfords have launched a marketplace for third-party sellers, boosting the number of products available for sale to 40,000. (Source: The Drum)
– Harvey Nichols have ended their license agreement for their store in Baku, Azerbaijan, with local company Performans, after four months of their opening. (Source: Drapers)
– John Lewis have announced plans to re-open their flagship store at Londons Oxford Street in September 2015, after eight months revamping of the store. (Source: The Telegraph)
– Kikki.K have announced plans to launch their first flagship store in the UK by October 2015. (Source: Retail Week)
– Made.com have received £40m funding from the Fidelity Growth Partners Europe and Partech Ventures, for funding their expansion plans. (Source: Financial Times)
– Superdrug have announced plans to launch delivery service for their online customers in Ireland from 29 July 2015. (Source: Retail Gazette)
– Victoria Plumb have changed their name to VictoriaPlum.com and have also launched a new website and brand image, as part of their expansion into bedroom furniture segment. (Source: The Drum)
Courtesy of ‘Barclays‘
Courtesy of ‘Sykes‘
If you think you’re having a bad day, or life isn’t going as planned, check out the below post and video we caught on Upworthy. It’s actually devastating to watch especially when you see how frankly she talks about her experiences. But her attitude to life is inspirational. The article is courtesy of Wagatwe Wanjuki…
At 18 years old, not only has she been battling a form of cancer called Hodgkin’s lymphoma, but she is also an outspoken survivor of childhood sexual abuse and domestic violence. When I read her story, she became my new role model.
Lena is determined to use her life to make the world a better place.
When Make-A-Wish, the organisation whose mission is to help children with life-threatening illness fulfil their dreams, reached out, Lena knew exactly what she wanted to do. She didn’t go for your typical fun, well-deserved wish like a trip to Disney World or meeting her favourite celebrity.
She wanted Make-A-Wish to help her publicly share her story of abuse.
Lena has gone through a lot in life, but she says battling cancer is nothing compared to the pain of the abuse she endured. She carried a lot of shame about being sexually abused — until she started speaking out. When she finally told her mother, the shift in her life was huge. It was a pivotal moment in her journey to recover from the trauma and get her abuser out of her life.
She wants to inspire others to speak out so they too may feel the wave of relief she felt when she finally shared her story — and so others can think differently about what a survivor looks like.
Make-A-Wish gave her the experience of a lifetime.
Lena asked to spend a weekend with two of her closest friends, who are also survivors of violence, so they could join her for a photo shoot. Before the shoot, all three women had their hair and makeup professionally done. After the photos, she got to share her story online in video and print, so it can be spread far and wide.
Her wish shows the power of speaking out as a survivor.
The truth is, sharing one’s story of abuse can be helpful for both the survivor and people who hear it. Studies have found that there are psychological benefits from helping others and that storytelling can be a healing force after trauma.
Coming forward can also help make our society better — it helps combat the stigma that pressures so many to stay silent. According to a 2013 study, more than 1 in 4 girls and 5% of boys report experiencing sexual abuse or assault by the age of 18. Compare these numbers to the estimated 12% of child sexual abuse incidents reported to the authorities. Many feel too ashamed to share their history because of misinformation and victim-blaming. But Lena wants to change all of that.
This in no way means that everyone should or must divulge their survivor status to others. I am a firm believer in survivors knowing what is best for themselves. Deciding whether to come forward is deeply personal, influenced by a lot of factors. And some people decide that coming forward is not the best option for them. But Lena made the decision that it was.
Thanks to her bravery, we are one step closer to getting rid of the stigma that survivors unrightfully face after being victimised.
From one survivor to another, I want to say thank you, Lena.
Some would consider it as sacrilegious as when Coke dabbled with its classic formula back in the 80s, but after 98 years Converse has updated its iconic Chuck Taylor All-Stars. On the outside they look nearly identical, but on the inside the Chuck II is actually far more comfy for your feet.
Before you feel outraged about Nike’s shoe technology invading your classic Chucks, it’s important to remember that Nike actually bought Converse back in 2003 after it went bankrupt. So without the swoosh, Chucks wouldn’t actually still exist. Thankfully, Nike hasn’t really messed with Converse offerings since the takeover. And the new Chuck II actually sounds like the best of both worlds. Classic Converse styling, with advanced Nike technology.
The biggest update to the Chuck II, as it’s officially called, is the inclusion of a material called Lunarlon. Developed by Nike, it’s a lightweight and bouncy foam that the company uses in its running and basketball shoes, but Lunarlon will now be incorporated into the Chuck II’s rubber sole. You probably still don’t want to run a race or shoot hoops while wearing them, but the Chuck IIs should still feel comfy after a long day’s wear.
There are a few minor aesthetic changes with the Chuck II, including a non-slip tongue and the perforated suede liner—visible in the shot above—which helps improve breathability. (Translation: your feet won’t sweat and stink as much.) But overall it will be very difficult for most people to spot the differences between the original version and the upgrade—except the price tag.
Courtesy of ‘Bloomberg‘
What’s happening in #retail & with brands – trends for w/e 17th July 2015 #retailtrends #retailnews #marketingweek #eventmagazine
– B&M have reported a 24.4% increase in group sales to £456.6m for the 13 weeks to 27 June 2015. UK sales increased by 22.8% to £418.8m while UK like-for-like sales increased by 1.1% for the same period.
– Burberry have reported a 10% increase in retail sales to £407m for the three months to 30 June 2015. The comparable sales increased by 6% for the same period.
– Conviviality Retail have reported a 2.4% increase in sales to £364.1m for the 52 weeks to 26 April 2015. Like-for-like sales decreased by 1.7% while profit before tax (excluding exceptional items) increased by 4.4% to £9.7m for the same period.
– Dixons Carphone have reported a 1.8% increase in group sales to £9,936m for 13 months to 02 May 2015. UK & Ireland sales were reported at £6,451m while UK & Ireland like-for-like sales increased by 8% for the same period. Profit before tax increased by 21% to £381m.
– Eastern Western have reported an 18% increase in turnover to £463.6m for the year to 31 December 2014. Profit before tax was reported at £7m for the same period. (Source: AM Online)
– Halfords have reported a 3.6% increase in total group sales for the 13 weeks to 03 July 2015. Retail sales increased by 3.4% while like-for-like sales increased by 3.5% for the same period.
– John Lewis have reported a 5.3% increase in sales for the week to 11 July 2015. Fashion, Home and Electricals & Home Technology sales increased by 6.2%, 4.5% and 6.1% respectively. Sales at johnlewis.com increased by 21.4%.
– Secret Sales have reported a 39% increase in revenues to £25.2m for the year to 31 December 2014. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
– Sports Direct have reported a 4.7% increase in group revenue to £2.8bn for the year to 26 April 2015. UK sports retail sales increased by 5.5% to £2.3bn while UK sports like-for-like sales increased by 7.4% for the same period. Underlying pre-tax profit increased by 20.5% to £300.3m.
– Waitrose have reported a 4.2% increase in sales (including petrol) for the week to 11 July 2015.
A disappointing week for the Lifestyle sector with like-for-like sales down by 3.2% Compared to this week last year. Just 29% of retailers in the sector reported positive like-for-likes this week the lowest percentage for three months. Home accessory and stationery retailers reported the best week this week, with outdoor goods retailers once again reporting a poor bricks and mortar sales. Lifestyle performed particularly well this week last year, so sales are off a strong base.
Fashion was the strongest performer of the week this week and, although only a small rise in like-for-likes of +1.0%, this represents a good performance for the sector with many weeks in negative territory over the past two months. Designer fashion retailers reported a particularly strong week which is due in part to elevated high street footfall in the Greater London area (+2.5%) and others are still reporting gains from launching discounting slightly later this year.
Homewares had a poor week this week, with like-for-likes slumping by -8.4%. DIY and home improvement retailers had a good week, whilst furniture retailers had poorer results. However, like-for-likes for the sector had a particularly strong week this week last year so matching the same performance would have been challenging for many retailers.
Non-store like-for-likes had another week of a rather weak improvement, with sales rising by 16.2% compared to this week last year. Non-store sales of lifestyle goods were particularly strong this week, and there is definitely continues to be significant attrition from bricks and mortar sales to online for lifestyle related goods: outdoor goods related retailers performed particularly well, despite a weak performance on the physical high street. Some fashion retailers reaped the benefits of targeted online campaigns, with a number of fashion retailers reporting sales growing by over 50% compared to this week last year.
Clothing, Footwear & Accessories
– Aldi have announced plans to launch back to school clothing range in their stores from 23 July 2015. (Source: Verdict)
– ASOS have entered into agreement with Acast to produce a podcast, which focuses on female business owners. The podcast will be available on iTunes and Acasts website. (Source: Retail Week)
– Cath Kidston have completed the acquisition of their 31 stores from TSI Holdings, retailers franchise partner in Japan, as a part of their global expansion plan. (Source: The Telegraph)
– Couture milliner, Jane Taylor, have announced plans for opening a 1,077 sq. ft. store at Londons Kings Road in September 2015. (Source: Drapers)
– French Connection have announced the departure of their Group Finance Director, Adam Castleton. The retailer has not announced any replacement. (Source: The Telegraph)
– Hugo Boss have announced plans for extending their retail space at Liverpool One from 3,170 sq. ft. to 4,160 sq. ft. The store due to open in October 2015 will house womenswear for the first time. (Source: Drapers)
– Jo Malone have announced plans for opening their flagship store on Londons Regent Street in Autumn 2015, taking their number of stores to 57 in UK. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
– M&S have announced the departure of John Dixon, Head of Marks & Spencers clothing and other non-food business. Steve Rowe, current Executive Director Food will be responsible for merchandising while Andy Adcock, Trading Director for food will be responsible for food. (Source: Company press release)
– MatchesFashion.com have announced the appointment of Tom and Ruth Chapman as their new Joint Chairmen. Both will step down from their current Chief Executive role and will be replaced by current Chief Operating Officer, Ulric Jerome. (Source: The Telegraph)
– New Look have announced plan to open standalone menswear stores in later 2015. (Source: Drapers)
– Schuh, footwear retailer have announced plans for opening their first store in Bradford at Broadway Shopping Centre on 05 November 2015. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
Electrical & Entertainment
– HMV have entered into a licensing agreement with Al Mana Lifestyle Trading to open 15 stores in Middle East, as a part of their global expansion plans. (Source: Retail Gazette)
Food & Drink
– Aldi have signed up to fruit and veg pledge drawn up by the National Farmers Union, to operate simple agreements with no penalty rates of mechanisms to reclaim money if sales fail to live up to expectations. (Source: The Guardian)
– Anheuser-Busch InBev has launched a UK TV ad as part of its Stella Artois Open golf sponsorship at St Andrews. (Source: Just Drinks)
– Lidl have acquired five-acre site close to Tolworth train station in west London for £10m, to develop the site as their new headquarters. (Source: The Telegraph)
– Tesco have announced plans for increasing the minimum order for their free click-and-collect service to £40 from £25. (Source: The Telegraph)
According to the Investment Property Forum (IPF), fashion and discount retailers will become more profitable due to the boom in online shopping. As per the report, fashion retailers operating in prime city centre locations will be the biggest gainers from multichannel as productivity at these stores is expected to increase by 34% due to the click-and-collect services and online Halo, which is when bricks-and-mortar shops acts as a marketing tool to encourage people to shop with them online. Fashion retailers are also expected to benefit from 22% uplift in the productivity of their stores in shopping centres, while shops in retail parks will see a 4% improvement. Discount retailers such as Poundland, Poundworld and B&M Bargains are poised for productivity to edge up 5% in prime city centre locations, 4% in shopping centres, 2% on secondary high streets and 1% in retail parks.
– Lords have opened their new boutique format store at St Johns Woods, London, as part of their on going expansion plans. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
– Wiggle have entered into an agreement with Doddle under which Wiggles customers can pick orders from and make returns to Doddles 35 station stores. (Source: Retail Week)
– Matalan have launched a new online home improvements brand called Matalan Direct, offering furniture and larger home items. (Source: The Drum)
– Paperchase have announced plans to open a 3,016 sq. ft. store at Silverburn out-of-town shopping centre in Glasgow by end of July 2015. (Source: Retail Bulletin)
– Post Office Limited have appointed Tim Parker as their new Chairman, replacing Alice Perkins, with effect from 01 October 2015. (Source: Company press release)
Courtesy of ‘Barclays‘