Stations are first stop for gifts and gadgets: King's Cross railway station - view from balcony

Tuesday 27 Sep 2016

Stations are first stop for gifts and gadgets

Route:
National

 

  • Network Rail publishes Q1 (financial year) retail sales report and announces new Head of Retail
  • Like-for-like sales have risen for 17th successive quarter

New retail sales results released today by Network Rail show that 204 million people passed through the company’s managed stations between April and June this year, comparable to the total population of Brazil (206.6 million).

Overall like-for-like sales for the quarter increased by 4.14%, more than eight times greater than the British Retail Consortium results for the same period, which were 0.5%. Almost one in three station users (64 million) visited Network Rail station retailers in the period, equivalent to the total population of the UK (64.6 million) and enough to fill Wembley Stadium over 700 times.

Food and beverage outlets in Network Rail’s managed stations are proving increasingly popular with sales rising by 6.1% overall compared to the same period last year. While traditional retail sales also continue to grow, increasing by 2.5%.

Sales at major stations in London (King’s Cross +8.7%), and across the country (Manchester +9.6% and Reading +10.2%) performed well, pointing to the ongoing changes in consumer shopping habits as more people look for central locations to meet, eat, shop and travel.

The like-for-like increase was also driven by three key growth areas in the second quarter of 2016. Year-on-year gifting purchases soared by 43.6%, suggesting stations are becoming a major destination for gifts on the go, whilst technology sales grew by 20.6%. Accessories completed the top three with 10.2% growth over the three-month period.

It is not just travellers buying more gifts, gadgets and jewellery that have helped Network Rail station retailers record a 17th consecutive quarter of sales growth. Alongside these strong figures for higher value purchases, were the daily journey type purchases, with visitors to stations around the UK buying the equivalent of 4.5 million cups of coffee.

To coincide with the release of these figures, Network Rail Property, the company’s commercial division, today announces the appointment of Daniel Charles as the organisation’s new Head of Retail. He will join in October from the Abu Dhabi Airports Company, where he was Head of Retail for almost two and a half years. Prior to this role he worked as a Senior Category Manager at Network Rail for seven years.

David Biggs, Network Rail’s managing director of property, said: “These figures show that the quality retail offering at Network Rail stations is driving strong customer traffic to the many shops, cafes and boutiques that stations now have to offer. That’s good news for shoppers and good news for passengers too. All profits from retail sales are reinvested back into the railway, helping fund the Railway Upgrade Plan.”

 

ENDS

 

Notes to editors

 

  1. Our managed stations

National stations

London stations

Birmingham New Street

Cannon Street

Bristol Temple Meads

Charing Cross

Edinburgh Waverley

Euston

Glasgow Central

King’s Cross

Leeds

London Bridge

Liverpool Lime Street

Liverpool Street

Manchester Piccadilly

Paddington

Reading

St Pancras International

(lower level)

Retail at St Pancras is managed by HS1

 

Victoria

 

Waterloo

  1. The UK population is estimated to be around 64.6 million according to the latest ONS statistics.

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020 7904 7148 / 07734 649247
pauline.o'brien@networkrail.co.uk

About Network Rail

We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 19 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.

Every day, more than 4.6 million journeys are made in the UK. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.

We are building a better railway for a better Britain.

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