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Our Special Report

UK Powerhouse: The Consumer Economy

Our UK Powerhouse campaign tracks economic growth in cities across the country and offers policy recommendations for the future. This special edition focuses on the consumer sector, including retail, tourism and leisure, and restaurants and bars.

We’ve worked with the Centre for Economic and Business Research (Cebr) to highlight the issues and opportunities facing businesses in this sector. There are challenges related to changing consumer buyer behaviour, access to talent, Brexit and new regulations, such as GDPR, but digital and technological change points at a bright future for companies able to innovate and adapt.

What’s In The Report?

  • UK city overview. Find out which UK cities have seen the fastest growth in the consumer sector and why certain areas of the country are performing better than others.
  • Forecast. What does the future hold for this sector in different parts of the country?
  • In-depth analysis. We look in detail at the retail, tourism and leisure, and restaurant/bar industry, covering the major talking points for businesses in these areas.
  • Expert views. Get the latest thinking from organisations as diverse as:
    • The CBI
    • Deloitte UK
    • HubBox
    • Welcome to Yorkshire
    • Nuffield Health
    • Punch Taverns
    • The Sport and Recreation Alliance.

You’ll also get our expert views on the legal issues facing businesses in the consumer sector together with key action points for the next 12 months, covering data protection, real estate, M&A, commercial, employment, governance, IP and immigration.

Key Findings

  • The consumer sector was worth £400bn in 2017.
  • Bristol was the fastest growing city for consumer GVA growth in Q4 2017, increasing 3.1% year-on-year.
  • Annual growth in online retail has been above 10% in most months in the last five years, while the number of visitors to retail parks, high streets and shopping centres has been falling.
  • Businesses need to differentiate themselves from competitors by considering the experience of the customer.

Download PDF Report 

Find out more about how we can help businesses in the consumer sector.