The Irish soccer team’s involvement in this summer’s European Championships could result in a €250 million boost for domestic retailers, it has been claimed.
Industry representative, Retail Excellence Ireland expects to see such a sales lift during June. If Ireland reach the tournament’s final, on July 1 in Kiev, retail sales could rise by another €18m.
According to David Fitzsimons, chief executive of Retail Excellence Ireland: “The sense of anticipation around the country is really starting to build, as we count down the days to Ireland’s first match in Poznan. The majority of retailers are picking up on this positive sentiment and are telling us that they expect to see an uplift in their sales during June.”
He added: “Predictably, television sets, sportswear, men’s casual wear and sporting equipment are all expected to sell in significantly greater volumes over the coming weeks.
“Retailers are also telling us that they expect to see an increase in sales of take-out food, alcohol and pre-pay mobile phones. Depending on the weather, our members are also preparing for increased sales volumes for barbecue meats and salads.”
Women’s fashion retailers are also expecting to see a positive knock-on effect from Euro 2012.
REI’s survey of its members found that 55% expect to see their sales increase as a result of Ireland playing in the upcoming tournament. More than half expect to see a sales rise of between 1% and 4%, while a healthy 30% expect to see sales rise by that same percentage — 30%.
According to Mr Fitzsimons, the tournament will prove a welcome boost to the retail industry in this country, following a long period of stagnation.
In terms of sporting events which retailers feel can add significantly to their sales, the European Championships rate highly, along with the likes of the World Cup, the Heineken Cup, the Rugby World Cup and the Ryder Cup.
“The ongoing crisis of confidence in the single currency, together with continued redundancy announcements is helping to keep consumer confidence low. Seen in this light, the country’s participation in the Euros is having a very positive economic effect,” Mr Fitzsimons added.
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