In releasing the 2015 Global Powers of Retailing report, Deloitte partner and retail industry leader David White said he expects more international retailers to come into the Australian market this year.
“In 2014 we saw the likes of H&M, Fast Retailing (Uniqlo), Forever 21 and most recently Sephora entering the Australian market with bricks and mortar stores,” said Mr White
“There was also the takeover of David Jones by South African-based retailer Woolworths SA.
“With a weakening Australian dollar and ever-increasing competitive pressures, we expect to see further interest by overseas retailers in the Australian retail market."
This expected influx of international retailers is expected to create a challenging retail environment for existing Australian retailers.
“As major global players continue to enter the Australian market, and existing global retailers expand their store footprint, Australian retailers across all segments will continue to face significant challenges and increased competition. The ability to innovate, drive improved processes and to connect with the consumer will be critical in order to remain competitive,” Mr White said.
Woolworths and Wesfarmers were ranked as Australia’s top retail businesses at 18th and 22nd respectively in a list of the world's top 250 by revenue. While both companies dropped slightly from last year’s rankings, (15th and 19th respectively), the drop is largely driven by the devaluation in the Australian dollar against the US dollar.
Wal-Mart topped the list of global retailers followed by Costco and French giant Carrefour.