The Chief Executive Officer of retailer Tesco, Dave Lewis, has stated that the business rates and the expenses that need to be made for buildings are largely responsible for the fall of several retail brands.
Dave Lewis stated that retail sector is the largest employer in the United Kingdom, that major changes that happened previous year in rates of business led to rise and fall of a few companies and that this has created an environment of an uneven arena for competition.
Mr. Lewis inquired about if we want to have healthy competition or if we want to increase business rates to a point where a biased arena is created and where people begin to find ways to reach to the market and cut down on the costs. He added that there should be a comparable arena, where a conventional store-based business can compete with a digital e-commerce company. He also went on to highlight that there was an addition of almost $700 million every year due to these business rates.
The CEO of the biggest retailer of UK also stated that the ministers have been neglecting retail and food industry and the two sectors aren’t getting sufficient representation in the plans of government for industries.
The demand put forth by Dave Lewis regarding revamping of the age-old system of business rates and an urge for action is in sync with a similar plea put forth by the CEO of competitor Sainsbury’s, Mike Coupe. It is important to note here that Sainsbury’s is intending to merge with Asda. The combined entity will be the largest supermarket player in the United Kingdom and dethrone Tesco from its position.
Dave Lewis assured that although the charges the retail companies with a lot of stores have to face are high, the stores will continue to be there.