Hong Kong Shopper Numbers Hit the Roof During Christmas and First Week of 2008

Experian releases Hong Kong’s first FootFall Index to monitor shopper visits and offer visibility to shopping malls and retail outlets

Hong Kong Shopper Numbers Hit the Roof During Christmas and First Week of 2008

Experian releases Hong Kong’s first FootFall Index to monitor shopper visits and offer visibility to shopping malls and retail outlets

Hong Kong, January 21, 2008  — Retail market sentiment in Hong Kong over the Christmas holiday season was robust with shopper numbers increasing 11.8 per cent year-on-year, according to the latest figures from Experian® company FootFall. The strong growth in shopper numbers enjoyed by retailers in 2007 is continuing as the first week of 2008 recorded a 9.5 per cent growth year-on-year.

The figures are taken from Experian’s Hong Kong FootFall Index (FI), which gives a true representation of the change in visitor numbers to shopping centres in Hong Kong. FI provides yearly, monthly and weekly averages of visitor numbers in shopping centres. It enables retailers in shopping centres and commercial property developers to monitor trends of shopper visits, thus enabling them to implement effective marketing, leasing and operational decisions.

"The FootFall Index presents a true picture of shopper traffic across major shopping centres in Hong Kong," said Yannick Kennel, General Manager of FootFall at Experian Asia Pacific. "Retailers and retail property owners are able to evaluate the ability of retail outlets in shopping centres to attract customers and measure their own performance against the industry trend."

Hong Kong is the first region in Asia Pacific to launch the Experian’s FI. "Shopper traffic was buoyant throughout the year, confirming that 2007 was an extremely prosperous year for the retail industry, which is set to reach even higher levels for next year if the trend continues." said Kennel.

Key Findings of Hong Kong FootFall Index:

Year-on-year change for the week of Christmas:

Monday 24 December 2007 – Sunday 30 December 2007 vs

Monday 25 December 2006 – Sunday 31 December 2006 :                        +11.8 per cent

Year-on-year change for the first week of 2008:

Monday 31 December 2007 – Sunday 6 January 2008 vs

Monday 1 January 2007 – Sunday 7 January 2007 :                                    +9.5 per cent

Figures from FI for the Christmas week and first week of 2008 show an increase in shopper numbers of 11.8 per cent and 9.5 per cent year-on-year and surpassing 2006 and 2005.

"Interestingly, shopping centres started to get busy very early, starting end October and ramping up with a constant traffic build up, which cumulated into a record number of shoppers during Christmas week," said Kennel.

The year 2007, and the festive season especially, have proven to be exceptional for retailers in shopping centres. Now all eyes are set on 2008 to see if the good time will continue." Kennel concluded.

~ Ends ~

Margaret Lam
Head of Marketing, Asia Pacific
+852 2839 5276

Notes to Editors

Please note, all information presented in this press release and references to the FootFall Index is owned by FootFall, an Experian company. By issuing this release, FootFall is allowing the use of this statistical information in either printed, spoken or written format. However, the source of this information must be attributed to FootFall Limited, an Experian company, and the use of statistics to the FootFall Index.

About FootFall Index (FI)

The FootFall Index gives a true representation of the change in visitor numbers to shopping centres. The FI is created to allow the retail and retail property industries to access week-on-week, month-on-month and year-on-year changes in the shopper numbers on a percentage basis.

(International FI)

FI is available internationally in nine locations—France, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

In the UK, the Retail FootFall Index (RFI) is endorsed by the BCSC, the membership organisation that represents the retail property industry, and, as such, is regarded as representative of UK shopping habits.  The RFI now measures over 150 million shopper visits per month in over 200 retail centres throughout the UK, covering more than 12,000 retail outlets.  Over 80% of the UK's population is contained within the catchment area of the basket of centres from which the RFI is produced.

About Experian

Experian® is a global leader in providing information, analytical and marketing services to organisations and consumers to help manage the risk and reward of commercial and financial decisions.  Combining its unique information tools and deep understanding of individuals, markets and economies, Experian partners with organisations around the world to establish and strengthen customer relationships and provide their businesses with competitive advantage.  For consumers, Experian delivers critical information that enables them to make financial and purchasing decisions with greater control and confidence.  Clients include organisations from financial services, retail and catalogue, telecommunications, utilities, media, insurance, automotive, leisure, e-commerce, manufacturing, property and government sectors. 

For more information, visit www.experian.com.hk.

Experian Group Limited is listed on the London Stock Exchange (EXPN) and is a constituent of the FTSE 100 index.  It has corporate headquarters in Dublin, Ireland, and operational headquarters in Costa Mesa, Calif., and Nottingham, UK.  Experian employs approximately 15,500 people in 36 countries worldwide, supporting clients in more than 65 countries.  Annual sales are in excess of $3.8 billion (£1.9 billion/€2.8 billion).

About Experian’s Business Strategies Division

FootFall is part of Experian’s Business Strategies division, one of the UK's leading economic forecasters, and is a world leader in the provision of retail business information to the retail and retail property markets. The Business Strategies division provides an understanding of consumers, markets and economies in the UK and around the world, past, present and future. Its focus is consumer profiling and market segmentation, retail property analysis, economic forecasting and public policy research, supporting businesses, policy makers and investors in making tactical and strategic decisions. As part of the Experian group, it has access to a wealth of research data and innovative software solutions.

The division’s economic research team is devoted to analysing national, regional and local economies for a range of public and private sector clients. Its statisticians, econometricians, sociologists, geographers, market researchers and economists carry out extensive research into the underlying drivers of social, economic and market change.

For more information, visit the Group's website on www.experiangroup.com.

The word 'Experian' is a registered trademark in the EU and other countries and is owned by Experian Ltd and/or its associated companies.