Spend your money locally, veteran retailer Eddy Abed told Barbadians as massive sales capture the attention of shoppers across the western world for Black Friday and the highly anticipated Christmas season which follows.
Praising Government’s announcement of a $1,300 reverse tax credit for people earning less than 25,000 a year, the former chamber of commerce president and Managing Director of Abed and Company Limited, said the measure is only fair considering the increased burden placed on taxpayers.
Abed said: “I understand the rationale behind it.
“The cost of living has increased because of added taxes on petrol, land and water rates, which are all indirect taxes.
“Government recognises that it has a responsibility to persons earning under a certain threshold that they are no worse off with the introduction of these new rates as they were prior to it.
“From my perspective as a retailer, it comes at a great time, where there is more disposable income in the marketplace and no different to my competitors, we are hoping that a lot of that remains here and is spent in the local market place.”
Abed said the months of October, November and December account for 70 per cent of retail income nationally and indicated the next few weeks would be critical.
He added: “I don’t have to tell you if we have a good season, how well that will be reflected in 2020 and equally if we have a poor season, the ramifications as we go into 2020.
“So it is an important time of year; there’s no question.”
The businessman is among dozens of others who are preparing or have already started offering massive sales for Black Friday, which traditionally occurs on the Friday after the North American Thanksgiving Holiday.
Having adopted the tradition retailers offering clothing, electronics, appliances and even vehicles have lowered their prices, extended their opening hours, beefed up security and launched large advertising campaigns ahead of the event.
Abed explained this year is his company’s third year participating in the craze.
“Generally speaking, Black Friday has become a very important part of the calendar, the lead up to Christmas, and consumers expect savings because it is so heavily advertised on cable TV. In addition, retailers want every opportunity they can to offer their merchandise to consumers in a way that resonates with them, which can obviously translate to sales,” Abed said.
Some sales extended throughout the week leading up to black Friday, while other retailers simply could not afford to offer the massive savings for longer than two days.
“These events have taught us that three things are very important. We need to advertise in a manner that reaches as many consumers as possible. We use every media including social media that is available to us. We need to ensure that the safety of our staff and our customers is met at the highest level. We need to ensure consumers are given as much time as possible to enjoy the savings. That’s why we go into two days, do the extended opening hours and we do it again on Sunday,” explained the businessman.