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Natural & ethical beauty products are the market buzz today

01
Mar '06
Retail analyst Verdict Research released the retail results for this week.

J Sainsbury is to overhaul its Tu fashion range, increasing the number of collection launches to 12 this year. The company will also increase the number of stores selling clothes from 135 to 165. Sainsbury's currently has a relatively low 0.4 per cent of the UK's £36bn clothing market, and is reckoned to have fallen behind its rivals in the development of clothing and other non-food sales.

A new strategy statement from L'Oreal has listed a bid for Body Shop as an option. A bid would value Body Shop at around £600m, and be made in cash. Laura Ashley has reported a 6.7 per cent fall in like-for-like sales for the year to January 31.

The company states that sales of home furnishings finished strongly as the fourth quarter saw a successful annual sale and positive consumer response to new product lines. However, home furnishing sales for the reported 12 month period are expected to be down 1.3 per cent, with fashion sales down by 25 per cent.

Debenhams is to launch a football-themed range in April for the World Cup. Notable products include a £10 inflatable referee upon which fans can take out their frustration, whilst the "Behind The Boys" vest for girls may even find favour with gay consumers.

A new strategy statement from L'Oréal has listed a bid for Body Shop as an option. A bid would value Body Shop at around £600m, and be made in cash. However, Verdict chairman Richard Hyman is unsure about the logic of the deal, advising L'Oréal that "it's probably looking at the wrong retailer." Body Shop shares ended the day on 265p, and it is believed that Dame Anita Roddick could make £120m from any sale.


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