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There is no escaping the fact that times are tough in retail. So much so that the UK's merchants are having to look to alternative revenue streams to maintain their bottom line, expanding into areas beyond their traditional markets and expertise.
Although expansion into new business areas is nothing new, more retailers have been experimenting with 'venturing'.
This can take a variety of forms, from the setting up of a formal joint-venture company with a third party to the creation of a revenue-share arrangement, whereby a retailer sells a third party's specialist products in its store or on its website, using that company's brand name.
As with many …