Retail Intelligence

Weekly Roundup, November 2, 2016

By Donna Ahern
Weekly Roundup, November 2, 2016

Gilfresh Produce has been named Northern Ireland’s Agri-Food Business of the Year at the Farming Life/Danske Bank awards. The company has sales in excess of £18 million and employs 130 people at Loughgall. Founder of the business Thomas Gilpin was also recognised at the awards with a Lifetime Achievement Award.

Health-casual restaurant brand Freshii is partnering with Aramark to fuel its expansion. The deal will see Freshii open a number of new outlets in Irish locations, including Arnott’s Department Store and Trinity College Dublin. Including UK stores, the expansion is expected to create 100 new jobs.

Government Chief Whip Regina Doherty has warned that Irish retailers might suffer from the sterling slump. Ms Doherty has said that the favourable exchange rate might tempt shoppers to travel to Northern Ireland for their Christmas shopping instead of doing so domestically. “To normal people, they'll see it as a positive, but in actual fact it's going to be a real negative to our retail industry,” Ms Doherty said.

Barry Group, Mallow and all of their trade suppliers have partnered with the Bia Food Initiative at the Barry Group Trade Show. The Bia Food Initiative redistributes surplus food to a variety of charities across Ireland. The trade show produces a large value of surplus and Karen Horgan of Bia Food Initiative said they were “delighted” to partner with the Barry Group for the event.

Bord Bia has launched an Irish beef promotion with the Maredo steakhouse chain in Germany. The month-long promotion offers Irish beef exclusively in all 48 Maredo restaurants. Bord Bia also organised in-store promotions for Irish beef in the German hypermarket Real, which is Ireland’s biggest customer for beef, accounting for one quarter of German exports.


A private investor has paid in excess of €1 million for the Tesco Express retail investment on Fairview Strand in Dublin 3. The store is rented for a term of 25 years from 2010 at a rent of €75,000 per annum. The store extends to 348sq m (3,753 sq ft) and is located along a well-trafficked stretch of Fairview Strand.

Some 125 institutional funds have filed a damages claim for more than £100 million (€111 million) against Tesco in Britain. The claim is in relation to Tesco's profit overstatement to the Stock Exchange in September 2014. Bentham Europe, which provides financial backing for group claims, said the legal action will seek to prove that Tesco breached the Financial Services & Markets Act by making misleading statements to potential investors.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) in Northern Ireland has called on politicians in Stormont to “do nothing” about its business rates scheme. FSB’s head of external affairs Roger Pollen warned against the possible retraction of the Small Business Rates Relief bill, introduced in 2009. Mr Pollen said of the policy, “It's been one of the best pro-business policies to emerge from the Assembly.”

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