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Martin: "Brexit May Knock Consumer Confidence"

Published on May 4 2016 9:37 AM

Martin: "Brexit May Knock Consumer Confidence"

Speaking to Checkout after Musgrave announced profits of €67 million for 2015, CEO Chris Martin has had his say on what impact he feels a UK vote to leave the EU would have on Ireland.

Martin revealed that aside from the possible impact on trade between Ireland and the UK, there is a fear among retailers that a 'Brexit' would undo all the hard work that has been done recently to improve consumer confidence in Ireland.

He said; "I think there will clearly be ramifications for Ireland. From a retail point of view, I think the real issue is going to be about what it knocks in terms of consumer confidence. We know as retailers, that confidence is important for the consumer.

"There's also the issue around what will be the financial market's reaction the day after a vote to leave. We've kind of been there before, because when we had the recession start in 2008, the exchange rate went up to just under 95p, we had to deal with cross-border trade with Northern Ireland. So we've been dusting off and looking at that," he continued.

Martin is also concerned that the move may undo some of the positive momentum that the Irish market has seen in the past 12 to 18 months. "My main concern though would be that it knocks the momentum and has an impact when things are going so well for us. It's about planning and being involved, but also not allowing over-planning. I think that's where we need some political leadership."

Martin also revealed that Musgrave is in the very early stages of working on a plan to export its products to other retailers around the world. "We have started to work, and it's very early days, around what opportunities there are to opening up not only own-brand but also our Food Academy to export opportunities. It's something that's on our radar. We see the likes of Waitrose and the success they're having, and we want to follow suit."

© 2016 - Checkout Magazine by Niall Swan

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