It is common knowledge that UK retail was already in bad shape before the COVID-19 pandemic.
Years of over expansion, rising business rates, growing e-commerce adoption and stagnant wage growth have decimated many once flourishing household brands. Some 6,000 stores closed for business in the UK in 2019, according to the UK-based Centre for Retail Research — more than double the number in 2018 — and landlords have been forced to liquidate some of their buildings at eye-watering prices.
None of this is about to change any time soon. Like the rest of Europe, the UK is heading towards a COVID-19-induced deep recession, which will be accentuated for landlords by requests from retailers for rent delays, or an easing on current rental terms.
When the authorities manage to get the pandemic under control, however, there may be a strong case for investors to enter, or as the case may be, to re-enter the market. This is particularly true for retail warehousing parks,