Covid-19 has create unprecedented challenges for all sectors. Even the conference call services, streaming services and data providers are having to adjust to an influx, while hotels are empty and many retailers are hanging in through online sales and gift cards. Exporting to the American market is an ambition for many European companies, whether they are from Ireland, Denmark, or other. Michael E. LeBlanc, spoke to clients of Enterprise Ireland on the challenges now facing the American Retail Market.

New York’s Times Square is virtually empty on Friday.
New York’s Times Square is virtually empty on Friday 3rd April.
(Angela Weiss / AFP-Getty Images)

Quick introduction to Michael E. Le Blanc

Michael E. Le Blanc is the Founder and President of his self-entitled company since 2017. From 2014 to 17 he was a Senior Vice President of the Retail Council of Canada and has extensive experience in senior positions across The Shopping Channel, Hudson’s Bay Company, Levi Strauss & Co and Black & Decker.

Michael offers a unique perspective as the Voice of Retail in Canada (Podcast), leveraging knowledge and experience to provide strategic advisory services and tactical consulting to local, national and international retailers.

A woman walks in Times Square wearing protective goggles, latex gloves and a face mask in New York City. Photo by John Angelillo/UPI | License Photo


America is currently struggling with supply chain issues, getting product out of China and the loss of the Chinese tourist.

National Retail Federation expected a 2020 increase from 3.79$ billion to 3.95$. Now? 55% plan to spend less money in next 3 months. Many retail CEOs are asking, ‘how do I prepare myself and the team to save the business?’

Customer retention is the focus for many businesses, with new customers important, but not priority.

– 20% Department store decrease in growth, IHL Group’s data. (2020 Adjusted growth).

Not all industries are on the downhill. Skincare is growing on Amazon sales. (I think Michael said +13%)

Create a community online for your customer base.

TREND ALERT: Increase in purchasing small treats, for example small beauty bits.


Retailers have started to use fact that people are home. Tell stories on Facebook.

Virtual style guides.

Were all thinking about health issues these days.

The next article in this series will be on tacking Amazon in the North American Market.

President Donald Trump, surrounded by members of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, is seen in a reflection as he delivers remarks on the pandemic in the press briefing room of the White House on March 22. Photo by Jim Lo Scalzo/UPI | License Photo

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