Better sales at stores, hotels over Xmas

Better sales at stores, hotels over Xmas

SINGAPORE- Businesses have been toasting to good times during this Christmas and New Year period, as shoppers in Singapore seemed more willing to part with their cash during this festive season than they did previously.

Hoteliers, retailers and even the postal service mostly said their sales during this holiday season have been better than a year ago.

Orchard Road Business Association executive director Steven Goh said its members' sales over this festive season are expected to increase by 5 per cent compared with the same period a year ago.

Department stores also told The Straits Times they have seen an improvement in sales over the Christmas period, though they declined to say by how much.

Tangs chief executive Foo Tiang Sooi said "figures have seen a healthy increase" compared with 2012's Christmas period.

The launch of a refurbished homeware section and the re-opening of a food market at its flagship Orchard store in November were a big boost, he said.

However, Mr Foo noted that shoppers are becoming more selective about how they spend their cash, given increased competition from new malls, brands and online retailers.

Still, department store Isetan Singapore has been fending off the competition well enough. Its sales promotion manager James Che reported that turnover during this holiday season has been slightly better.

The opening of a new Isetan outlet in Jurong East last month led to the improvement, he said.

A spokesman for Takashimaya Department Store said sales were challenging over Christmas, but it managed to achieve the same level of sales as the previous year.

Food and beverage business owners have also been getting a slice of the spending pie.

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