Tokmanni Espoontori will not open its doors for another half an hour, but a few dozen people have already lined up for the re-opening of the discount shop. Pensioners Sinikka Taponen and Jouko Pöyliö joined the line well ahead of time: they are after a gift bucket and have carefully studied the re-opening campaign flyer delivered to their home a few days earlier. “Shampoo is cheap, 2.5 euros for a big bottle. That's a 36 per cent reduction,” Taponen points out.
The recent struggles of department store chains and consumer goods retailers have been well documented. Statistics Finland has reported that retail sales fell by 1.8 per cent year-on-year in November and by as much as 6.8 per cent between October and November.