Looking forward to Lisbon

Spending the afternoon on the finishing touches for a presentation I’m going to deliver at the modern retail conference of Portugal’s retail association APED next week Tuesday, 17 Jan. Will speak on economic and retail trends across Europe that may or may not affect Portugal, at a conference that will be all about how to ‘Win the Future’. In Lisbon, which clearly is the most beautiful city I’ve seen so far. Can’t believe that 20 years after doing my civil service there I’m now returning as a rich old analyst with a fat golden ring on my finger!


Less beautiful than the city is Portugal’s economic outlook – and here are three slides that will be cast against the wall. Thanks to lots of content input from my team mate Tatjana Wolff (who will also attend the conference) plus brilliant design ideas from our Senior Editor Jo Jones. (As always, you can click on the thumbnails to see larger versions of the images).



This one shows Portugal’s double dip recession. Another chart will show how unlikely Portugal is to return to pre-crisis output levels until 2015. That’s too long a crisis to be waited out, structural change is unavoidable in retail and elsewhere.



Both in absolute terms and by international comparison, Portugal is very dependent on private consumption. Therefore, it is bad news that December 2011 saw the lowest level of consumer confidence ever recorded in the country. Getting this right is the key economic challenge for the government.



In line with most industrialised nations, Portugal’s birth rates have dropped sharply, namely by two-thirds in the past half century. This has implications on social re-distribution (and associated with it, disposable income levels), consumption quantities in the young-people segment, as well as household sizes and locations. The latter should support a shift of retail investment back to town centres and residential areas, at the expense of out-of-town hypermarkets.


Have a good weekend,




3 Comments on “Looking forward to Lisbon”

  1. #1 Victor jorge
    on Jan 16th, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    Hy Boris,
    hope to meet you in Lisbon tomorrow.

  2. #2 William
    on Jan 19th, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    What did you think of the conference? Many good ideas on European retail/economic trends moving into the future?

  3. #3 boris
    on Jan 20th, 2012 at 10:31 am

    William, it was a great conference - equipped with the broader-than-just retail view that it needed, given the current economic situation. Plus there were a good number of inspiring presentaitons and the dialogue behind the scenes was intense… good trip.

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