Harrods Postpones Iconic Summer Sale, Blaming Delayed Arrivals
The supply chain has claimed another high-profile, hotly anticipated victim, as the delayed arrivals of the season’s hottest new looks has forced high-end department store retailer Harrods to postpone its annual summer sale, according to a Bloomberg report Wednesday (June 22).
“Our supply chain is running two to three weeks behind where it should be,” managing director Michael Ward told Bloomberg TV at the Qatar Economic Forum. “A good example of that is we’ve just delayed the summer sale for two weeks because I need another 10% of new-season stock to allow me to function into the new year.”
Of course, Harrods is not the only retailer that’s been forced to change or update its plans on the fly as a result of ongoing supply chain snags, zero-tolerance COVID-19 policies in China, the ongoing Russian attacks on Ukraine and other economic conditions. The situation has hampered industries from high-end fashion to electronics to cars to grocery stores and restaurants and just about everything in between.
Tight labor markets present another challenge, particularly in the U.K., where airlines, retailers and others are struggling to recruit workers, the report said.
“It’s almost impossible to find the right staff,” Ward said. “We’ve lost significant amounts of people as a result of Brexit. And it’s not the skilled or qualified, it’s the people we need to do jobs that unfortunately the British will not do.”
Last July, Harrods teamed with high-end rental marketplace My Wardrobe HQ, with Harrods handling the stock and curation of rental fashion items, and My Wardrobe HQ tackling promotional service and logistics.
Harrods’ rental suite was available through a pop-up in its Knightsbridge store and through the My Wardrobe HQ website, featuring pieces from designers including Zimmermann, Roksanda, Rotate and Huishan Zhang. Rentals ran from four to 14 days, with shoppers also given the option to buy the items they tried.