Network Rail has released station retail sales results showing 7.8% growth in like-for-like sales from September to December 2013 – the most successful quarter for Network Rail managed station retailers on record and a significant outperformance over high street sales (+0.6%*).
The growth achieved by Network Rail highlights the growing demand for convenience retailing and the power of stations to deliver consistently lucrative trading environments for British retailers. Profits from Network Rail’s retailing and property activity is all re-invested in the railway.
Hamish Kiernan, commercial director of retail, Network Rail, said: “Station trading continues to grow dramatically, significantly outpacing the high street. Guaranteed footfall and convenience are key drivers of this growth and both are great selling points for the railway. Stations offer a vibrant and healthy trading environment and we are continuing to attract new brands to meet the needs of passengers and local communities alike.”
Network Rail’s latest trading figures were compiled from the sales results of retailers operating from over 500,000 sq ft of retail space (520 units/shops) across 16 of Britain’s biggest and busiest stations owned and operated by Network Rail, and benefiting from a combined annual footfall of over a billion.
Top performing stations include King’s Cross (+26%), followed by Manchester Piccadilly (+10.7%) and Liverpool Street (+8.7%) when compared to the same period last year.
Trading at King’s Cross has benefited from a major investment scheme enabling new retail facilities to be added to the station environment, and offering customers a wider choice of food and beverage as well as retail brands.
Specialist food (+15.8%) performed best in stations this period followed closely by dining (+14.1%). Other top performing categories include pubs and bars (+13.9%) and health & beauty (+12.7%).
High performing brands include Wasabi (+19%), Paperchase (+16%), Body Shop (+14%), Hotel Chocolat (+12%), Caffe Nero (+8%), M&S (+8%) and Oliver Bonas (+8%).