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Leading 10 retailers' share of the apparel market in the UK 2008-2018

The UK apparel market is a hotbed of competition. From mid-market players to value clothing companies, specialist brands to department stores, the UK retail landscape has been anything but unexciting with tectonic changes happening in the past decade. In 2018, the leader in the market was Marks and Spencer with a market share of 7.6 percent. This was a considerably poor performance for M&S, as previously the retailer had a relatively secure position at the top with 9.7 percent share. On the other hand, Primark, whose market share has made the biggest leap over this period of time, is an ambitious and likely contender.  

Winners and losers

  As the present statistic demonstrates, for the time being Primark seems to be a winner while Marks and Spencer has reasons to be cautious. Next is one retailer who was able to keep its position stable, whereas the same cannot be said of Arcadia Group, who owns brands like Topshop, Topman, and Miss Selfridge among others. Indeed, sales numbers for Arcadia slumped significantly over the years and the retailer was recently threatened with store closures as the company had to go into restructuring.   

Good days for specialist retailers

  Specialist retailers such as JD Sports and Sports Direct were two brands that increased their market share between 2008 and 2018. Particularly, Sports Direct has recently been a much talked about retailer in UK retail as its CEO Mike Ashley made several moves to buy out ailing high street retailers, including department stores House of Fraser and Debenhams. Most recent data reveals that the revenue of Sports Direct generated from UK and European markets is on a reassuring track.

Leading retailers' share of the apparel market in the United Kingdom (UK) in 2008 and 2018

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Release date

May 2018


United Kingdom

Survey time period

2008 and 2018

Supplementary notes

* Estimates.

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Statistics on "Primark"

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