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Primark confirms June 15 re-opening for stores in England

Fashion retailer is working towards opening 153 outlets in two weeks’ time.

The parent company of Primark – Associated British Foods – has confirmed that it is looking to re-open 153 stores in England on June 15.

The re-opening of the outlets in two weeks’ time would take the number of open Primark stores to 281, representing 79% of total selling space. City AM reported that Primark is currently running at just 34% of its full capacity.

The retailer is waiting for further guidance from the devolved administrations for its stores in Northern Ireland, Wales and Scotland, anticipating opening in late June.

Primark began re-opening stores in Europe – including Austria, the Netherlands, Italy and Belgium – in early May.

AB Foods said in a statement: “Trading in our re-opened stores has been both reassuring and encouraging, with customer queues outside most stores and, once in store, spending on larger basket sizes.

“However, the trading results since re-opening were delivered over a very short period, will have been influenced by a number of specific factors and may not be indicative of a long-term pattern.”

The company cautioned that cumulative sales since re-opening, on a like for like basis, were down on the same period last year.

Reuters reported that Primark’s initial view is that it is likely the implementation of social distancing measures will only affect sales to some extent in its busiest stores – these represent 10-20% of pre-COVID-19 total Primark sales.

ABF is due to release a trading update in a month’s time which will indicate Primark’s performance.

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