Retailing in Pakistan is experiencing a boom, with all channels seeing growth. This is a result of increasing consumption in the economy due to multiple demographic and socioeconomic factors, such as the growing middle-income group, rapid urbanisation and a youth-dominated consumer base.
In the absence of proper differentiation and distinction of the mixed retailers channel in the country, awareness of and loyalty to the players in this channel remains low. Whilst the increasingly sophisticated consumer base will fuel the growth of overall retailing in the country, including mixed retailers, the channel will face tough competition from other grocery, non-grocery and specialist retailers that have carved a competitive edge in the market through product variety, quality and value deals.
Mixed retailers is still in its infancy in Pakistan, with only two major players operating in the channel. The larger player, Canteen Stores Department, serves mostly the armed forces personnel in the country.
Debenhams in Pakistan struggles from low customer footfall, despite being in the busiest shopping centre in the most sartorially-savvy city in the country. The brand loses customers to low-priced international and local brands that have a more localised product range, especially in apparel and footwear.
Debenhams attracts aspirational consumers by giving enormous 50% and sometimes even 70% discounts during sales. The retailer operates a quick turnover strategy; hence, with sales and value deals, stock is cleared, and new products are brought in to maintain the novelty of designs and styles.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Retailing market research database.