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Why The Shoreditch Retail Market Continues To Remain Brexit Proof


As Brexit feels never-ending, the impact of our proposed exit of the European Union has been one of the factors that have caused a dark cloud to linger over the retail market, leading to a series of high profile site closures from companies such as BHS, Toys R Us, Banana Republic, Patisserie Valerie, Byron Burger, Jamies Italian….the list is unfortunately endless.


Brexit is not the only factor that has caused the perfect storm which has led to the derailment of the retail sector, the increase in business rates, added costs of importing goods and change of customer behaviour with more people choosing to shop online have all combined to cause misery for retailers.


The retail crisis has engulfed almost all areas of the capital with the city & west end seeing numerous site closures, as well as neighbourhood locations, having been the worst hit as small independent business have been unable to survive in the downturn.


Despite this doom & gloom, Shoreditch has continued to remain with generally blue skies above. There have been minimal closures and conversely, a spring of new exciting operators have opened up in the area. Island Poke, Gloria, BlackLock, Flat Iron and Black Sheep Coffee are just a number of trendy operators who have increased the profile of the location.


Why Has Shoreditch Defied The Retail Crisis?


There are a number of key reasons for this:


1) Shoreditch is a small area in comparison to other key London locations such as Soho and this means there’s only a limited amount of retail units in the area, demand is still seemingly outweighing supply and this has allowed Landlords to hold and even increase the value of their holdings. We recently marketed a small boutique retail premises in Charlotte Road and had multiple parties interested in trying to secure the premises which highlights that demand remains strong.


2) The diversity and creativity of the area have meant that a number of innovative and forward-thinking retailers are attracted to the location, it’s these operators who have bought immersive concepts such as Flight Club, Junkyard Golf & Bounce to the area and seem to be leading the revolution of the high street.


3) The area is continuing to develop and grow with Amazon recently taking around 300,000 sq ft of offices in the principle place development, Nobu Hotel opening, Travelex taking the penthouse floor at the Bower Building and We Work & Fora expanding in the area.


The future of the high street is unpredictable but what is clear is that this perfect retail storm is killing off old and outdated concepts and making way for forward-thinking operators with Shoreditch looking perfectly placed to lead the way in revolutionizing our high streets.


Oli Cohen