Retail compass spring 2024

Retail Compass Spring 2024

Published on 15 April 2024

Welcome to the Spring edition of Retail Compass, where we guide you through key upcoming legal and policy changes affecting retailers and consumer brands and provide our thoughts on those crucial, need-to-know issues.

The retail and consumer market is experiencing a tumultuous time and the shakeout is demonstrating that those with the right structure and ethos are thriving whilst others are stalling. With businesses and retailers striving to attract customers in an increasingly competitive market, we take a closer look at how the priorities of the younger generations (in particular Gen Z) are shaping retail and consumer offerings; as well as the challenges and opportunities those demands bring to retail and consumer brands across all channels.

Highlights of the Spring edition include:


The rise of recommerce

The recommerce market (which includes reselling, renting, refilling, repairing or reusing goods) is already an extremely valuable market, estimated by Barclays to be worth almost £7bn in the UK alone and expected by Visa to increase to £82bn by 2030. This growth – particularly in respect of resale – is widely regarded as being driven by Gen Z consumers, over two thirds of whom now prefer to buy second hand over new goods.

Environmental sustainability: a snapshot of a changing regulatory landscape

The ESG regulatory landscape is evolving – and fast – in response to increasing pressure from stakeholders, regulators and consumers (among others). The changes are particularly acute for companies in the retail and consumer brands sectors which typically have complex global supply chains, rely heavily on natural resources and are consumer-facing.

Ambush marketing: protecting official partner rights

International events such as the Olympic Games are ripe ground for attracting opportunistic companies that seek to ride on the publicity value, but without any financial contribution to the event (aka ‘ambush marketing’). Ambush marketing is when a brand attempts to gain recognition by associating themselves with an event without consent and deceives the public into believing they are an official sponsor. There is no doubt that ambush marketing harms the value of exclusive sponsorship and partnership deals. It is therefore imperative that event organisers put measures in place to protect exclusivity. 

Virtual advertising: a glimpse into the future

With the rise of immersive tech, advertisers and brands are increasingly looking to promote their products and services on "real world" property in augmented and virtual reality environments. Property Digital Rights (PDR's) are an emerging asset class, designed to allow property owners to protect, manage and monetise how their properties are used in immersive environments. We take a look at the future of PDRs and their role in building both customer experience and revenues.

DMCC Bill: improving consumer price transparency and product information

Following receipt of some 372 responses to the "Smarter Regulation: Improving consumer price transparency and product information for consumers" Consultation, the government has published its response in which it proposes significant amends to the Price Marking Order alongside new additions to the DMCC Bill. With additional consumer rights of redress looming on the horizon, now is the time for retailers to take steps to address any problematic behaviours within their businesses and how they interact with consumers.

Levelling up of D&I in the workplace: four key employment law changes

  • Day one right to request flexible working and changes to the supporting statutory procedure comes into force on 6 April 2024. 
  • Introduction of carer's leave comes into force on 6 April 2024. 
  • Extended redundancy protection for pregnant workers and those returning from family-related leave comes into force on 6 April 2024. 
  • New positive duty on employers to take reasonable steps to prevent sexual harassment of their employees in the course of their employment comes into force in October 2024.
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