Magazine article Marketing

Primark to Unveil First Transactional Website

Magazine article Marketing

Primark to Unveil First Transactional Website

Article excerpt

Fashion retailer plots ecommerce site to extend its high-street success online.

Primark, the budget fashion retailer, is to sell goods online for the first time.

The Associated British Foods subsidiary has put out a tender for a digital agency to build its first ecommerce site, as it looks to tap into the growth in online retail. The site is expected to go live in 2012.

While most of its rivals already sell goods online, Primark has concentrated on increasing high-street sales.

Richard Perks, director of retail research at Mintel, said Primark was late to move into online retail because 'it wasn't obvious that the sums would add up'.

'Primark would risk losing market share if it wasn't online, so to a certain extent, it's a defensive move and not about growing revenue,' he added. 'Primark is about disposable fashion and I don't feel as though it's about long-term, considered purchases.'

Primark, which recorded revenue of pounds 2.7bn in 2010, is expanding rapidly. It has 36,000 employees and operates 220 stores in Europe. It claims to be the second-biggest clothes retailer, in terms of volume sales, in the UK.

Online retail in the UK was worth pounds 58.8bn in 2010, according to the trade body for online retail, the Interactive Media Retail Group However, the rate of growth is in decline; year-on-year sales increased 11.5% in July, the lowest rise since January 2010.

Sarah Peters, lead analyst at Verdict Research, said: 'Primark is still growing rapidly through its stores, so it has not been necessary to focus on digital. …

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