Top stories in the paper this week 5 – 11 November 2010

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Iceland to take on 2,000 staff in roll-out; M&S to increase investment; Irish still big Christmas spenders despite the cuts



11 November 2010

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1. Iceland to take on 2,000 staff in roll-out

Iceland is to create up to 2,000 jobs in Ireland with the opening of 105 stores over the next four years. The Irish Examiner reports that the AIM Group, which owns the master franchise for Iceland Foods in Ireland, is understood to be investing €30 million in this Irish expansion. The company is on the lookout for sites across the country to locate the outlets it plans to open over the next four years, as well as Irish suppliers to stock the stores.

2. M&S to increase investment

Marks & Spencer has announced a 17% rise in first-half profit and has said it will aggressively step up investment in its core UK business, online and overseas. The Irish Times reports new boss Marc Bolland, who was enticed from grocer Morrison’s by a £15 million pay deal, said he would spend an extra £850-900 million over three years to lift revenue to £11.5-£12.5 billion by 2013-14 from £9.3 billion in 2009-10.

The Guardian also reports M&S’ branded food products will be slashed from 400 lines to just 100 (The Guardian)

3. Irish still big Christmas spenders despite the cuts

Overall spending is set to fall by 10% this Christmas, yet the Irish still plan to spend more in December than our European counterparts. The Irish Independent reports Ireland is in second place in the European spending table behind Luxembourg, according to a survey by consultancy firm Deloitte. The average family intends to spend €1,020 on the festivities, down from €1,431 in 2007; with households spending €250 on food. Discounted products and retailers’ own brand items are also back in vogue.

4. UK law to ban shop cigarette displays faces compromise due to illegal sales

Legislation to block UK shopkeepers from openly displaying cigarettes for sale is to be weakened after Conservative/Liberal Democrat ministers accepted it could harm small businesses and encourage black-market sales of cigarettes. The Irish Times reports the growth in illegal sales in Ireland since similar legislation was passed, has been used as an argument by the retailers and tobacco firms who are attempting to persuade the Government to drop the legislation due to come into force early next year. 

5. Almost 50% of Irish people will shop online this Christmas

Some 46% of Irish consumers will be buying their presents online, according to this year’s annual Deloitte consumer survey. The Irish Examiner reports that on average, consumers will spend just over a third of their gift budget on the internet. Furthermore,  41% of respondents intend to spend more on the internet this year. The main reasons identified for shopping online are lower prices than traditional stores (79%), the convenience of home delivery (70%) and to avoid crowded stores (63%).


Has the regulator overstepped its powers? (Irish Times)
-The Irish Times reports on the law that requires chemists to ensure that codeine-containing products “are not accessible to the public for self-selection”.

Sainsbury’s claims X Factor boost as profits rise (The Guardian)

Smart Consumer: Don’t get fooled by dirty tricks in retail price wars (Irish Independent)

Food price surge lifts retail sales
in October (Belfast Telegraph)

Greencore ruling – Report too late for staff (Irish Examiner)

Cavan retailer to feature in The Apprentice (The Anglo-Celt)

Carlsberg falls as it fails to hit targets (Irish Independent)

Slaney Meats calls a halt to kosher meat slaughter (Irish Independent)

Store Wars: The fight for festive shoppers (Belfast Telegraph)

Eggs, poultry should be superfoods, says expert (Irish Independent)



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