The London Olympics are over, a lot of amazing talent on show from the best athletes on the planet. What was your favourite sporting moment? Bolt, Farah, Daley? Most people have a pick from one of these three. Mine? The Indian team winning Silver! I am hoping that the Sports Ministry get their act together and are able to invest money into training athletes before Rio, so that a country of the size of India can have at least some more medals (6 in Total in case anyone is interested).
Did the Olympics have any impact on Fashion or Retail in general in London? It's a very interesting question. For us, the impact was marginal from a business perspective; the concerns were around deliveries and time needed for the deliveries. But in general for London retail, was it a good Olympics?
The Westfield mall attracted 5.5 million visits during the Games. Staggering number of visitors by any measure - but what was the impact on sales? Not too much information is forthcoming about this aspect. More so in the prestigious West end, where the authorities did a great job of keeping people away from. The authorities insisted that people should plan journeys carefully, and I imagine that people planned so carefully that they completely avoided the West end. Business must have surely suffered due to people staying away.
Another broader question is around people actually spending money in these recessionary times, did people really go all out and open their purses for this once in a life-time event in London? Anecdotal data seems to suggest not. It seems that people visited the sporting events and did not really indulge in shopping. More time was spent in soaking up the atmosphere and enjoying the city (the good weather helped in this).
Bottom-line is that the massive investment in the Olympics is going to have a positive impact in the future and longer term than the immediate impact of visitors shopping in London. Certainly this was the case for Indian Designer clothing online we did not see a perceptible difference in business because of the Olympics being at our doorstep.