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Retailers Moving Swiftly On Christmas Inventory

By YOURI KEMP

Tribune Business Reporter

ykemp@tribunemedia.net

Bahamian retailers are moving swiftly to ensure they have sufficient inventory for the upcoming Christmas holiday season as concerns mount elsewhere about the impact of supply chain shortages and backlogs.

Margo Farrington, chief marketing officer at Lorene’s Department Store, told Tribune Business: “September is always a little slow so we’re just waiting to get our Christmas stock.” Despite having a few delays on underwear items, she said there is “no reason for concern” yet as things are only just now “trickling in” for Christmas and there are still weeks to go.

“Most of our end-of-year stock comes in in October. That’s the normal time we start to receive Christmas supplies,” Ms Farrington added. She spoke amid concerns expressed by retailers in the UK and elsewhere that they may face inventory shortages for the upcoming Christmas shopping season due to supply chain backlogs and a shortage of heavy goods vehicle drivers. Those woes have been worsened by Brexit, which is an issue The Bahamas does not have.

Lucy Burrows, general manager of Geoffrey Jones, said: “Everything is back to normal here. There has been a bit of a challenge, but it has gotten a lot better. We just want to make sure we have enough stock for the Christmas season.”

Geoffrey Jones has an annual sale that starts around the Thanksgiving holiday in the US, which carries the company into the Christmas holidays. Ms Burrows said this would happen again this year. “We want to get all of our stuff in and have them up to date by Thanksgiving,” she added.

“We’ve been told that if you want to get your stuff, order it now because there may be problems later. This is pretty much from our main supplier, which is GE (General Electric), about the appliances that we get in.”

Consumers should order ahead of time or “pre-order” with Geoffrey Jones to ensure they get exactly what they want for Christmas, Ms Burrows added.

Myles Yallop, owner/operator of 3M Technologies, said that while it was too early to make any determinations about the Christmas season and how it will shape up, he is still being cautious.

He added: “I do run out of items from time to time, but this has nothing to do with any shipping delays or product shortages, and it has nothing to do with anybody in particular. My Christmas stock starts trickling in by next month. That’s the normal time I start to get my Christmas inventory.”

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