In the weeks following the closure of the stores that do not sell food, sales there fell by 70 percent. Last week, that revenue loss dropped to 25 percent. This is not immediately consistent with the image of empty to semi-empty shopping streets the past week.
CEO Danny Van Assche from business association Unizo has a statement: “Surely more people visited than we thought at first sight. And what we also note is that people who come shopping also spend more. Obviously, those were people who wanted to make some purchases and couldn’t do that in the past few weeks. ”
Because of the better figures for the shops, many entrepreneurs in that sector have become less afraid of going bankrupt. Of the shopkeepers who were allowed to open again on 11 May, 6 percent still talk about “a suspected or very likely bankruptcy”. In recent weeks, this was still 11 percent. So there is a bit more optimism, but according to the ERMG, the situation remains worrying.