Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

from Summit Notebook:

Check Out Line: World Cup boost to Europe sales peetering out

SOCCERCheck out how European retailers are a little downcast now about the "World Cup" effect.

France had a spectacular flameout, and Germany, Spain and England have been struggling, leading experts to tell the Reuters Global Retail Summit that they were less optimistic about the boost sales could get from the World Cup mania sweeping the Old Continent.

DSG International, Europe's No.2 electrical goods retailer, said on Thursday it had seen a 50 percent jump in sales of televisions in the run-up to the tournament and that sales volumes were up 30 percent on the last World Cup in 2006.

And Ian Cheshire, chief executive of Kingfisher, Europe's biggest home improvements retailer, which has been selling garden gnomes dressed in the England team's kit, said "The mood effect is the thing that everyone is looking for, and based on the past week, I'm distinctly not counting on it."

World Cup soccer hits home-run in U.S. bars

SOCCER-WORLD/From our correspondent Nivedita Bhattacharjee:

Surprised at the roar from the bar around the corner on an otherwise normal work day in New York City? Don’t be. It’s the FIFA World Cup, and that pub’s full of people rooting for team USA.

As a record number of U.S. viewers tune in to experience the 90-minute soccer matches, bars and taverns from New York to San Francisco are doing all that they can to keep the cheers loud and the beers flowing. And even while at work, some Americans are letting daily tasks idle while they keep score.

World Cup is no March Madness in sapping productivity


cup1It may be the World Cup, but when it comes to sapping productivity in the United States the global soccer tournament still has a thing or two to learn from March Madness and the National Football League.

Outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, which often measures lost workplace productivity, said many U.S. fans will tune in for the quadrennial soccer tournament, which kicks off Friday in South Africa, but the event still trails the NCAA men’s basketball tournament, dubbed March Madness, and other events.

Goal! but no sales, as World Cup distracts shoppers

TRAVEL-LEISURE-SUMMIT/From our apparel correspondent Nivedita Bhattacharjee:

Financo’s president Bill Susman identified an unlikely rival that could hamper retail sales all over the world in the coming months – the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

As if jittery financial markets, oil spills and debt crises are not enough, retailers will soon have to fight the World Cup to entice customers, many of whom will be esconced in front of their TV sets as the most popular soccer tournament kicks off later this month.