Which shops won gold during the Olympics?

Updated: 

Westfield StratfordGetty Images


Most people would agree that it has been a great Olympics, and that London has done Britain proud. But did it bring the retail boom that shops were hoping for?

Persistent warnings of impending travel chaos - reinforced by London mayor Boris Johnson's public announcements on the tube - put off so many people from travelling into central London that the West End resembled a ghost town in the first few days of the Games.

By all accounts this changed in the second week, although the East End never caught up and reported declining shopper traffic for both weeks. This seems more than unjust given that it was next door to the Olympic Park.

Shops that won gold
Luxury stores such as Mulberry and Burberry did a roaring trade thanks to the pre-Olympic "Ramadan rush," according to the New West End Company, which represents retailers in London's West End. International visitors also flocked to upmarket department stores Selfridges and Liberty during the Games.

Westfield Stratford City got so busy that only people with Olympic tickets were admitted one weekend. Shops selling souvenirs and London 2012 merchandise also cashed in.

Better weather saw Brits take to their gardens and parks. Thousands watched the Games on outdoor screens around the country, fortified with beer and picnic staples. Grocers already enjoyed a pick-up in sales in the run-up to the Games. A temporary relaxation in the Sunday trading laws allowing larger stores to stay open longer provided an extra boost to supermarkets.

Predictably, bike and sports shops also benefited from the Olympics, with people splashing out on new bikes, swimmming, tennis and rowing gear, spurred on by Team GB's successes.

The losers
Small shops and cafes in London's East End were among the main losers, similarly in the West End, as their usual clientele stayed away. Shopper traffic was down 9.6% year-on-year in the East End during the first week, and fell 8.6% in the second week, according to Experian.

Steve Richardson, UK regional director at Experian, said: "The unparalleled sporting event for a generation brought huge numbers of visitors into London, although their impact in terms of expenditure in the shops remains to be seen."

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