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Green shoots as Primark begins store reopenings in Europe

Retailer resumes trading in Austria and the Netherlands, with Belgium and Italian store reopenings planned.

Primark has begun the reopening of its stores across Europe – a move which will come as welcome news to the licensing business.

The retailer – which does not trade online and has had all of its 375 stores closed since mid-March – resumed trading at its five Austrian outlets last week, followed by its 20 stores in the Netherlands, a report in The FT confirmed.

Reopenings in Belgium and Italy are also expected this week.

The FT reported comments from John Bason, finance director at Primark’s parent company, Associated British Foods, saying that while overall footfall at the reopened stores was down and spread more evenly through the week, basket sizes were larger.

Sales spikes had been seen in nightwear, health and beauty and childrenswear.

The number of shoppers allowed in the stores is determined by floor area – in Austria, the current ratio is one person for every ten square metres.

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