Freddie Blackett, founder & CEO, Patch 1. What is the greatest opportunity for your business?  At Patch, we believe that plants bring homes to life. However, in recent years, we’ve observed a widening gulf in the gardening industry – between its retailers and customers. Populations are increasingly urban – 85% of Western Europe will be…

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Retail Insider, in partnership with Novomind, held its latest ‘Zoom Cocktail Hour’ with Catriona Marshall, owner of Running Bear Sports, who talked about the differences between holding senior positions within large global organisations and running your own small operation. Having spent time at Mars and Kraft in FMCG followed by senior roles at Pets At Home…

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Welcome to this column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what clothing retail is doing to address the issues in its industry. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical. From palm oil to fur farms, fast…

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One particular evening a couple of years ago remains very clear in my memory. I was sat in a bar with my then nine-year son who told me he didn’t like pubs. When his mother joined us a short time later she consoled me with the opinion that I’d dragged him out, away from his…

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Name: LuxDeco The Place: Online/global with UK distribution warehouses but no showrooms. The Story: Did you ever get bored of your house and eating at home all the time during the pandemic? Oh yes: Ever wondered if a thousand pound chandelier would improve things? Umm: Ever wondered if having the correct serving tray could make…

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Paolo Woods-Wyatt, CCO, Tails.com 1. What is the greatest opportunity for your business? At tails.com, the team have spent the last few years investing heavily in our infrastructure – people, technology, supply chain. We’re now in a place to leverage that to continue to scale the business rapidly. We have plans to continue to launch…

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It is with great pleasure that we launch the annual ‘Retail Insider Digital Retail Innovations’ report for 2020 (sponsored by Webloyalty), which is arguably the most dynamic edition to date as highlighted by DNANudge heading up this year’s list of the Top 60 innovations. Covid-19 has been a major driver of new consumer behaviours and…

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Retail Insider, in partnership with Novomind, held its latest Zoom Cocktail Hour with Ken Daly, CEO of JML Group, who talked about rocketing online sales and the importance of hit products to fuelling the company’s £100 million annual sales. The business was already enjoying growing online sales through its own direct channel when Covid-19 drove a…

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We asked all our winners in this year’s Transforming Retail Awards to tell us how they felt about winning their category. And here is more detail from Jeremy Byfleet, UK operations manager, Infarm on how it feels to be awarded Best Newcomer. How do you feel about winning this Award? It’s great to be recognised…

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Retail Insider is pleased to launch the 2020 edition of the Movers & Shakers in retail Top 100 report highlighting the most digitally progressive people in the industry who are making a major contribution to changing the landscape of retail. Produced in conjunction with sponsors K3 BTG, this year’s report continues with the objective of previous editions in…

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On leaving the Royal Academy last Sunday after viewing this year’s Summer Exhibition it felt like a much more airy and less frenetic experience than previous year’s, with the art seemingly less crammed together on the walls.  But then I realised it was nothing to do with the art at all. It was instead all…

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Name: Bread Ahead The Place: Started in the oldest market in London (or pretty much anywhere) Borough Market   but now has several sites in the West End and has just opened up a big old emporium at Wembley (but more of that later). The Story:  Bread – the staff of life innit. And hasn’t it…

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Taking my regular cycle route to the top of Alexandra Palace in north London recently it was impossible to miss an enormous stage being constructed on one of the car park spaces. It turned out to be set-up for a two-week run of Puccini’s La bohème by the English National Opera dubbed “ENO Drive &…

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Welcome to this column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what clothing retail is doing to address the issues in its industry. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical. From palm oil to fur farms, fast…

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We asked all our winners in this year’s Transforming Retail Awards to tell us a bit more about themselves and their winning entry. Lost Stock won out in the sustainability category for their phenomenally successful venture to support garment workers in Asia while also diverting unwanted stock from landfill. 1.      How do you…

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Many times over the past couple of weeks at the end of the day I’ve thought about popping out to the pub for a quick pint while I read the paper. But I’ve then changed my mind and instead cracked open a can of beer or poured a glass of wine at home. Once lock-down…

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Retail Insider, in partnership with Novomind, held its latest Zoom Cocktail Hour with Mark Fox, CEO of Roadchef, who talked about his mission to elevate the perception of the motorway service station. With a major £75 million investment made across the estate of Roadchef service stations and the introduction of new brands like Leon Mark detailed…

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Freddy Ward, co-founder of Wild Cosmetics 1. What is the greatest opportunity for your business? We believe there will be an unstoppable wave of change in the way consumers think about sustainability and how their buying behaviours impact the world we live in. Wild is well positioned to help consumers on this journey and to…

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“The occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way.” You might not have experienced much of this over the past six months because it’s the definition of serendipity and it’s become a bit of a scarce resource. Over the years it’s fair to say that my personal circumstances and work-related…

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We asked all our winners in this year’s Transforming Retail Awards to tell us a little bit more about themselves and their winning entry. Order management system OneStock jointly won the Editor’s Special Award for its agile Web to Store IT system which allowed Whistles to unify their stock (e-commerce, warehouses, points of sale, suppliers)…

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Name: Selfridges The Place: One of the grande dames of the department stores of London’s Oxford Street (and now Birmingham and Manchester too) but one which has always been a bit wild and exuberant and just a teeny bit off the wall. Like Princess Margaret to the Queen’s Fortnum & Mason if you will. There…

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Apple’s market cap recently hit an incredible £2tn, which represents a doubling in only two years, and this has happened during a period when sales of its core iPhone have been slowing. The reason for this apparent disparity is largely down to a realisation by investors that the value of Apple is not so much…

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The winners of the Retail Insider ‘Transforming Retail Awards 2020’ have been announced during an online unveiling via Zoom. The Awards always aims at highlighting some of the most exciting innovations to happen in the retail sector over the past year and there were plenty of those in 2020. The categories being judged this year…

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Back by popular demand, Retail Insider is pleased to announce it is hosting another small, perfectly formed, programme of Zoom Cocktail Hour events with an interesting mix of special guests from very different parts of the retail universe. Each guest speaker will tell their own interesting story that will undoubtedly throw some fresh insights and…

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1. What attracted you and Womble Bond Dickinson to being involved with these Awards? We were attracted to the Retail Insider Awards because we believe that a vibrant retail industry is crucial to the country’s economic success and these awards recognise the best companies, big, medium and small which are revolutionising the way the industry develops. 2.…

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1. What attracted you and Openpay to be involved with the Retail Insider ‘Transforming Retail’ Awards?The pandemic brought with it store closures on an unimaginable scale and challenges for many retailers which would have seemed insurmountable. Yet, through hard work and dedication, many teams innovated and pivoted to adapt to ever-changing customer demands. As the economy slowlyshows…

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Welcome to this column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what retail is doing to address the issues in its industry. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical. From palm oil to fur farms, fast fashion…

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Chatting to leading property player Roger Madelin recently, it was clear he was proud of the fact that in the early 1990s, when he was running property developer Argent, the company’s Brindleyplace project in Birmingham had been the first mixed-use site to introduce turnover-based rentals for retailers and hospitality companies. He went on to use…

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Retail Insider is delighted to reveal the shortlist for its fourth annual ‘Transforming Retail’ Awards of 2020 kindly supported by Openpay and Womble Bond Dickinson. The aim of the awards is to showcase the very best examples of innovation across the sector as decided by our independent panel of judges. This year’s panel comprised: Paul Wilkinson,…

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When growing up in Yorkshire, ordering the ‘scallop’ – a deep-fried, layered fish and potato cake – was the value option at my local fish and chip shop because it was significantly cheaper than going for a cod or haddock with my chips. Only later, when frequenting smarter restaurants, did I come across the alternative…

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Brought to you by Retail Insider and Flooid Name: Cazoo The Place: Billed as the new disruptor on the block of one of the last consumer markets not yet transformed by digital commerce – yes, it’s used cars. The Story: It’s very early days for Cazoo. Seriously, this thing launched just as Covid-19 was getting going…

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Long-standing Covent Garden bar the Roadhouse has become the latest casualty of covid-19 with the announcement it will not be opening again. The toll of dealing with the current uncertainly around late-night London has meant its owners sadly do not regard the operation as viable. The statement on its website reads: “It is the end…

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Long-standing Covent Garden bar the Roadhouse has become the latest casualty of covid-19 with the announcement it will not be opening again. The toll of dealing with the current uncertainly around late-night London has meant its owners sadly do not regard the operation as viable. The statement on its website reads: “It is the end…

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Welcome to our section of the site which focuses on the sustainable side of retail. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical. From palm oil to fur farms, fast fashion to one-use plastic, excess packaging to food waste…

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Regular users of the bathing ponds on Hampstead Heath have been getting hot under the collar over the recent introduction of an online booking and payment system brought in by the City of London Corporation to safely manage swimmers during covid-19. Previously, the denizens of this smart north London enclave could pitch up whenever they…

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Charles Wells’ pubs in France have been a quiet success story as the portfolio of outlets has grown on the back of young French drinkers’ appetite for the unique British bar vibe the UK operator has shipped across the Channel. One of the key components of this has been the hubbub around the bar. Unlike…

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Despite the incredible rejuvenation of the King’s Cross area of London it remains largely bereft of traditional pubs serving top-notch craft beers apart from one that has become a firm favourite of mine: The Queens Head on Acton Street. Located only a five-minute walk from the train station it was until Covid-19 in a decent…

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Brought to you by Retail Insider and Flooid Name: The Hut Group The Place: Based in Manchester Airport City. And building a really huge HQ there even as we speak plus its ICON building, which is all about content creation. But also fulfilment and warehousing centres across the world. The Story: It’s a funny one. Ask…

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Welcome to this column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what retail is doing to address the issues in its industry. Today an interview with the co-founder of luxury resale site Rites brought to you by Retail Insider with Clipper and Give Back Box This month our sustainability column is an interview with the co-founder of…

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Retail Insider, in partnership with Novomind, held its second Zoom Cocktail Hour with Angus Thirlwell, CEO of Hotel Chocolat, who revealed how developments at the business had been dramatically accelerated as a result of Covid-19. As the lockdown hit Hotel Chocolat relied solely on its website and this has continued deliver significant online sales uplifts.…

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Calling all innovative companies who want to tell the world about their amazing work… you have until 10th July to enter Retail Insider’s fourth annual Transforming Retail Awards. And the good news in these times of straitened finances for retail is that it is entirely free to enter and also very easy. Far from being…

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When McDonald’s reopened my local Drive Thru restaurant my son absolutely demanded we made a visit. What was interesting was that as lockdown was in place there were no employees required in the restaurant. Cost savings you might think. Not so, because they had all been deployed outside where many more people were required to…

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Name: Atoms The Place: Headquartered in Brooklyn, US. No shops yet – it’s more of an online outfit. And it’s teeny weeny – less than 20 employees. The Story: Shoes. We all have to have them, it’s one of the very few universal products. The world must be shod! Can’t argue with it so far:…

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As non-essential retailers reopen their stores for the first time in three months they return to a very different environment to the one they left when lockdown was enforced. Over the coming weeks they will realise that some elements of their operations will be changed indefinitely and there will unfortunately be some casualties as a…

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Welcome to this column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what retail is doing to address the issues in its industry.  Today an analysis of the role of plastic in the Covid 19 crisis brought to you by Retail Insider with Clipper and Give Back Box In the past few years, really positive moves have…

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Home baking continues to enjoy its meteoric rise in popularity as a result of Covid-19 that is making flour one of the few items to still suffer shortage problems in retail outlets. Whereas things like hand sanitiser and toilet rolls have long returned to normal levels of availability in supermarkets this has not been the…

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Retail Insider, in partnership with Novomind, held its first Zoom Cocktail Hour with Retail Futurist Howard Saunders, founder of Twenty Second & Fifth, who considered where the industry is heading and how consumer behaviour is dramatically changing. There was no escaping Covid-19 in Howard’s assessment which determined the world is in the midst of a…

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Retail Insider, the influential retail blog edited by award-winning journalist Glynn Davis, is calling for entries to its awards dedicated to digital and technological innovation. The Retail Insider ‘Transforming Retail’ Awards 2020, now in its fourth year, has under the current circumstances been pared down in terms of the number of categories and the kind of…

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This is the third and final part of our series talking to a group of young teenagers about their views and habits around shopping, leisure and technology. The theme this week is sustainability and corporate and consumer responsibility as we tried to find out how it affects their brand and company perception, and what practical…

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You can call it ‘click & collect by car’ or contactless collection if you wish but it’s pretty much the same thing as what the Americans call curb-side collection and it is gaining some traction in the UK as a measure against Covid-19. Whereas the traditional click & collect, involving pick-up in stores, was developed…

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Ivan Mazour, CEO and Founder, Ometria 1. What is the greatest opportunity for your business? In our modern world, we struggle for time, and are overloaded in every direction with information. The opportunity we have is to change the way retail marketers practice, and enable them to give back their customers time, rather than take…

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Name: Beaverbrooks The Place: UK-based with a multitude of stores around the country. The Story: It’s been selling bling for 100 years but the story of family-run jewellers Beaverbooks is very much one for the here and now. How so? Beaverbrooks could have written the mantra we all live by now. Stay Home Save Lives?…

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Retail Insider is pleased to announce it is hosting its first Zoom-fuelled Cocktail Hour with special guest Retail Futurist Howard Saunders on Thursday May 21 at 5pm. Nobody really wants to be where we are right now so we are very pleased to call on the insights and humour (a fine cocktail) of Mr S…

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Supply chains are the hidden part of retail that shoppers have historically had no interest in whatsoever but this has changed during the Corona virus as shortages of items on supermarket shelves have put the supply chain on the front page. Large numbers of people buying an increased number of specific items has had a…

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Welcome to this monthly column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what retail is doing to address the issues in its industry. Today we discuss the different sustainable edits available in the market place and their chances of success brought to you by Retail Insider with Clipper and Give Back Box The number of fashion…

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When one of the UK’s most proficient and respected retailers decided to shut down its online operation it was a bit of a shock because the channel was expected to offset some of the sales it was losing through the enforced closure of its stores as a result of the Coronavirus. Fashion bellwether Next came…

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During this lockdown period I was very pleased to order my first home delivery from my favourite fish and chip shop, which had suddenly partnered with Just Eat, thereby providing further evidence of how even the humblest of businesses are adapting amid the Coronavirus pandemic. A similar adaptive mindset has been taken up by B&Q…

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Retail Insider is pleased to bring you a Q&A with Tony Buffin, CEO, Holland & Barrett, that was conducted before Coronavirus. 1. What is the greatest opportunity for your business? Digital growth and digital interaction with our customers is really important and this extends through product differentiation, range extension, and product customisation. We also want…

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As a household we’ve hardly ever used take-away food delivery services but it probably comes as no surprise that things have changed of late. A recent celebratory meal that would have typically been enjoyed in a restaurant was replaced with a meal from a super little local Polish restaurant Autograf. I’d have normally collected it…

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At Retail Insider’s recently convened Teen Panel a handful of tech-savvy 13-year olds told us about their consumption habits, their views on sustainability and how they live with the technology that they have all grown up with. In the second part of our series on the results we look at the devices and platforms they…

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A reversal of tactics is typically known as a U-turn and in politics it is regarded as a very bad move as it signifies flawed initial thinking. It is not generally regarded as quite as bad in the world of business because a change of direction can obviously be a sensible thing financially if it…

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Despite online being initially viewed as something of a saviour for ‘non-essential’ retailers forced to close their stores the reality has been more painful as many have been unable to operate online. A combination of issues over social distancing in warehouses and subdued demand for products within various categories has made it tough for many…

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If there is one thing we can be certain of over the past few weeks it is that food delivery has moved onto a new level of demand as the lockdown has driven significant adoption of the services of the main supermarkets. Customers have flocked to the major grocers and created seriously long virtual queues…

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Taking the requisite daily exercise last Sunday involved passing my local coffee bar, Islands in Hornsey, where the owner was crouched over a crate outside his shuttered premises handing out free food to random locals out for an exercise-like stroll. With no customers and perishable food on the premises it was clearly better to give…

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It’s difficult to imagine that there has ever been a time when the retail industry has faced as many twists and turns as it has over the last two weeks. A mere fortnight ago things were relatively normal in retail-land as its inhabitants cast glances at a virus propagating overseas. But since then the world…

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Drive-thrus haven’t played a particularly big part in my life – perhaps because I’ve never owned a car even though I passed my driving test decades ago – but it’s clear they have become increasingly popular in the UK since they crossed the pond. Drive-thrus are a mainstay of automobile-loving, fast food-guzzling American society. Their…

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Name: Nike aka The Swoosh The Place: Headquartered in Beaverton, Oregon, but surely one of the most globally recognisable brands anywhere on the face of the earth. The Story: This is the story of obsessive design. Focused on one product. And how constant and unrelenting iteration of that same product can eventually lead to a…

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When Amazon launched its Prime subscription service in 2005, many thought founder Jeff Bezos had lost the plot because of a potential loss of hundreds of millions of dollars through offering unlimited shipping for a modest $79 (£63) a year. The move delivered a welcome recurring revenue stream but the big question among many –…

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Welcome to this monthly column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what retail is doing to address the issues in its industry.   Today part two of the interview with First Mile founder Bruce Bratley – brought to you by Retail Insider with Clipper and Give Back Box Right now First Mile founder Bruce Bratley…

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A trip into almost any UK supermarket these days will alert the observant shopper to the proliferation in meal kits and two- and three-step cooking packets. It seems as if just about everyone is getting in on the kit act which handily combines the illusion of cooking from scratch with the personalisation element that so…

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A great deal has been written about Millennials and latterly Gen Z with regard to the way they interact with their social media and devices and how they shop. But due to their age little regard is paid to the consumers of tomorrow until they reach 18 and suddenly have the capacity to pay with…

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Welcome to this monthly column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what retail is doing to address the issues in its industry. This month a two-part interview with the founder of First Mile Bruce Bratley – brought to you by Retail Insider with Clipper and Give Back Box Recycling is an unglamorous but necessary element…

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Upmarket leather goods-maker Goyard has a compact store in Mayfair’s Mount Street that always has a queue outside snaking down the road. This isn’t simply down to the store’s popularity with global fashionistas, it’s also due to Goyard’s policy that only allows the same number of people into its store as there are employees on…

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Welcome to our section of the site which focuses on the sustainable side of retail. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical. From palm oil to fur farms, fast fashion to one-use plastic, excess packaging to food waste…

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Khaki specialist Dockers led the revolution in dress-down Fridays in the late 1980’s and is now positioning itself as the daily workwear brand of choice among thirtysomethings who no longer wear a suit any day of the week. After distributing its casual wear manual to HR departments after the financial crisis of 1987 Levi’s-owned Dockers…

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Here at Retail Insider we are always interested in the ways retailers get the most out of our seasonal celebrations – and none is more interesting than Valentine’s Day which has been twisted round more tenuous tie-ins than most other annual festivities. If you had told us yesterday that cook in the pot noodles could…

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Wander into the lobby, lounges, dining areas and other shared spaces in hotels within major towns and cities on a weekday and you will undoubtedly find lots of people working. Trends in how people work today are having a dramatic effect on the trading patterns – and potentially on the revenues – of hotels that…

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Welcome to our series of articles on retailers that are operating in ways that provide some interesting and valuable lessons to the wider industry. Name: Samsung KX Location: Coal Drops Yard, King’s Cross In a nutshell: Samsung has hopped onto the retail-as-theatre train in a big way with its latest huge space in London’s hottest…

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Name: Thrift Books The Place: Headquartered in the States but selling internationally. The Story: Selling books for a penny. How does anyone make money doing that for goodness sake? Listen and learn, people. I’m listening: As the New York Times once memorably said: “Penny booksellers are exactly the sort of weedy company that springs up…

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  John Roberts, CEO, AO World Where did it all begin? John Roberts is resolutely from Bolton and is usually characterised in the press as either a “no-nonsense” or “loud-mouth” Northerner. He still lives in Bolton with his family comprising wife and their five children, some of whom are grown up and some of whom…

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One of the biggest challenges for any fashion company is remaining relevant to the core audience. This is especially acute for those brands selling to a younger customer. A brand that appeals to an early teen is unlikely to appeal to an older teen when they then break out of this period then there is…

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Welcome to a monthly column within our broader sustainability section which focuses on what fashion is doing to address the issues in its industry brought to you by Retail Insider with  Clipper and Give Back Box Returns are a massive headache for retailers and are also detrimental to the environment – from the unnecessary transportation…

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Retail Insider is very pleased to be linking up with Wired as a media partner of its Wired Smarter conference on October 30 where a raft of speakers will provoke debate and highlight potential successful paths for the future. Retail is one of two verticals – along with Money – within the conference schedule and provides…

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Shortly after Starbucks entered the UK market through the acquisition of Seattle Coffee Company back in 1998 it rapidly opened a raft of stores in London before it realised it might have been rather gung-ho with its property selection criteria and it retreated from some of those initial unsuitable and probably over-priced units. From that…

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Regular conference goers will have heard far too many presentations from retail leaders extolling the virtues of putting the customer first. Maybe if they had actually done this at their respective organisations the industry might not find itself in quite so much trouble as it does right now. This is a problem that has been…

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Welcome to our section of the site which focuses on the sustainable side of retail. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical. From palm oil to fur farms, fast fashion to one-use plastic, excess packaging to food waste…

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When Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris suffered a very serious fire in April this year the Pinault family, which heads up the Kering luxury goods group, pledged Euros 100 million on the night of the fire towards its rebuilding. That was then beaten the next morning with a Euros 200 million pledge by the Arnault…

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For a long time the commercial property industry was a relatively straightforward place within which to operate. The rentals for shops and restaurants on the high street were set according to the levels achieved by similar nearby units and these deals were always agreed on the basis of upward-only rent increases at future renewal and…

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When Tesco launched its ‘one in front’ policy years ago to ensure a new checkout line was opened whenever more than one customer was in front of the line at any of its checkouts it was early recognition from the retail industry that customers simply hate queuing. The current major trend towards cashier-free stores is…

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  Name: Stitch Fix The Place: Well it was in the US but hurrah – it’s recently launched in the UK.   The Story: This company is not unique, it has competitors in the US (Trunk Club for example) and the UK (Thread for example) and yet this is still the one to beat. It’s…

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Customer acquisition costs continue their inexorable rise and are in danger of hitting unsustainable levels because the cost incurred to attract new shoppers to a retailer is now all too often a greater amount than their ultimate lifetime value to the business. In her much awaited annual ‘Internet Trends Report’ for 2019 technology guru Mary…

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Retail Insider is pleased to launch a new publication the Retail Insider Digital Champions Report 2019(sponsored by Software AG) that highlights some of the retailers, and individuals within them, that have taken the decision to be proactive in this new digitally-led world of retail. A batch of retailers have been selected who we believe are…

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Welcome to our series of articles on retailers that are operating in ways that provide some interesting and valuable lessons to the wider industry. Name: Trending Store from Nextatlas Location: Westfield Shopping Centre, London W12 In a nutshell: This concept pop-up, which has just finished its run in Westfield, aimed to only sell the top…

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Retail property event MAPIC is to have an extensive leisure component this year involving a series of talks and workshops and an exclusive leisure zone as the industry recognises the importance of seeking out new revenue streams. Changes in consumer behaviour and declining footfall has taken its toll on physical retail pure players and the…

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One of the most enjoyable aspects of travelling around the UK for me is visiting villages, towns and cities and popping into independent bakers to sample their specialities. Most communities still proudly produce local delicacies to a loyal clientele but one store I don’t hunt for when I travel is Greggs. Greggs’ chief executive Roger…

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With employees increasingly expected to fulfill broader functions on the shop floor and retailers needing to more efficiently manage the talent they have available through different in-store trading periods there is a growing need to bring more science into the equation. It has been a perennial balancing act for retailers ensuring they have the optimum…

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Online sales are predicted to rise dramatically over the next decade, accounting for 53% of the total retail market, but this could be scuppered by consumers’ increasing unease with sharing their data with companies. Research report ‘The Digital Tipping Point’ from law firm Womble Bond Dickinson and Retail Economics highlights how e-commerce is expected to…

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Following the launch of the Digital Retail Innovations 2019 Report (sponsored by Webloyalty) a series of Q&A’s with the leading figures behind some of the entries in the report are being published. Here is a Q&A with Will Broome, co-founder of Ubamarket, which features in this year’s report for its work with Spar, Budgens and others. 1. How…

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The growth of online shopping is leading to some interesting trends in terms of customer complaints and one of the more worrying involves the rise of the ‘buy now, pay later’ phenomenon. Recent research from independent complaints website Resolver highlights that these are only the 40th most complained about product or service but it predicts…

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Welcome to our section of the site which focuses on the sustainable side of retail. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical. From palm oil to fur farms, fast fashion to one-use plastic, excess packaging to food waste…

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Retail Insider is proud to launch its Digital Innovations Report 2019 (sponsored by Webloyalty) this week with an event involving two special guest speakers: Paul Hornby of Matalan, and Nick Thomas founder of Built. Guests from high street retailers, online operators and tech companies plus several members of the report’s Advisory Panel heard Paul run through his…

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    Name: The Co-operative Group. Well the food retail part of it anyway. The Place: Oh, all over. 2.5k+ units across the whole of the UK. The Story: Well, I don’t think we need to rehash the entire history of the co-operative movement and its iconic blue clover leaf logo here… Phew. But, in…

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  Quirky Swedish bank Klarna has opened a week-long pop up in the centre of Covent Garden designed to give some of its online brand partners a showcase to connect with their consumers directly. The showcase, laid out over two floors, is divided into sections such as Sports and Wellness, Interiors, Contemporary Fashion and Beauty…

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One of the retail industry’s long-established maxims is that the customer is always right. But maybe this is no longer the case. In a relatively simple world it was something that retailers could largely comply with but now that things have become a whole lot more complicated it might be the case that they are…

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Tim Steiner, co-founder and CEO, Ocado Where did it all begin? Back in the winter of ‘69, one Tim Steiner was born into a fairly affluent middle class family and went through the education system via Haberdasher Aske’s in Hertfordshire before completing a degree in Economics at Manchester University. An aptitude for knowing what the…

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Retail Insider held its latest Evening Event of 2019 with senior executives from John Lewis and Waitrose sharing their thoughts on how the two organisations are working increasingly closely together to develop a compelling experience-rich proposition for the future. Held in the development kitchens at the Waitrose store in the Granary Square development of King’s…

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Welcome to a monthly column within our broader sustainability section which is going to focus on what fashion is doing to address the issues in its industry. Boutique by Shelter – brought to you by Retail Insider with Clipper and Give Back Box We all think we know the deal with charity shops. Lots of them on…

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One of the dangers of having rabbits as pets is that they like to chew cables. When one of my children’s furry friends wandered into my office at the end of the garden he immediately sunk his impressive teeth into the cable of my router. This took out the broadband connection and life came to…

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Retailers who do not offer their customers a free and easy returns process are likely to lose sales and customer loyalty, according to myriad pieces of research, which rather states the obvious. Research from payments company Klarna found 75% of customers say easy returns are an essential factor in their choice of retailer, 78% say…

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When I took a job with a US financial institution it involved making regular phone calls to its European offices during what was often a very long day with little time for lunch breaks, as the Americans wanted their pound of flesh. One day I called the Geneva office at 1pm to be answered by…

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Retail Insider held its latest Breakfast Event of 2019 with Philippe Chainieux, CEO of Made.com, and Andrew Ellis, head of CRM at McDonald’s, who described how they are continuously adapting their businesses to satisfy customers in today’s dynamic market. Philippe highlighted how the pace of change had accelerated as access to technology has become increasingly…

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Welcome to our brand new section of the site which is going to focus on the sustainable side of retail. It’s exciting times for anyone involved in this area as technology and retailers try to keep up with customers’ demand for all things ethical.  From palm oil to fur farms, fast fashion to one use…

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Name: Bottletop The Place: Regent Street, London The Story: Ring pulls from cans turned into luxury bags. What’s not to like? Sorry, did you say ring pulls? I did. Did you say luxury bags? I did. In the same sentence? I did. OK, just checking: The germ of an idea, which began in 2002 as…

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Automation, machine learning, and artificial intelligence have been driving the narrative around the retail industry in recent years whereas the people element has been somewhat sidelined. It has certainly not been seen as a central plank of the future for the sector. But we are seeing evidence of a growing realisation that it is people…

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  Retail Insider is delighted to introduce and profile its judging panel for our third ‘Transforming Retail’ Awards. We hope you will agree that we have an outstanding line up ready to cast their eyes over the entries, in fact although we are biased we would argue that there is not an awards in the…

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  Retail Insider is delighted to introduce and profile its judging panel for our third ‘Transforming Retail’ Awards. We hope you will agree that we have an outstanding line up ready to cast their eyes over the entries, in fact although we are biased we would argue that there is not an awards in the…

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    Welcome to a monthly column within our broader sustainability section which is going to focus on what fashion is doing to address the issues in its industry. H&M laying out its sustainability credentials – brought to you by Retail Insider with Clipper and Give Back Box Fast fashion is a byword for poor sustainable practice…

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Rising demand for home delivery is changing the foodservice landscape as consumer appetite for meals brought to them in a matter of minutes continues to grow at an exponential rate. Spending on delivery increased 19% in 2018, according to Cardlytics, compared with a mere 3% for the overall dining market. There’s no doubt aggregator market…

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Retail Insider  is calling for entries to its awards dedicated to digital and technological innovation. Now in its third successful year, the Retail Insider ‘Transforming Retail’ Awards 2019 is designed to showcase the best examples of innovation in retail technology across the sector and will feature seven categories: ‘Best Overall Use of Technology’, ‘Best In-Store Experience…

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Pure-play retailers opening physical stores is a growing feature of the industry’s landscape and is a trend that has taken hold in the US where there are around 600 such stores at present and the forecast is for around 1,500 of these digital-first brand outlets to be operating within the next five years. These retailers…

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Welcome to our brand new series of articles on retailers that are operating in ways that provide some interesting and valuable lessons to the wider industry. Name: Natoora Location: Four units across London in Chiswick, Fulham Road, Sloane Square and Bermondsey. In a nutshell: In 2004 Franco Fubini founded Natoora in the UK – at…

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Name: ReTuna Aterbruksgalleria The Place:  Somewhere unpronounceable in Sweden. Just try for me: Eskilstuna The Story: Have you ever been to a tip? Yes, most recently: your house: No, I mean a rubbish tip. Oh. Yes I have: So you are familiar with the scene: large boxes full of both recyclable and non-recyclable waste. You…

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Everybody knows the story of how Kodak failed to switch from photographic film to digital images and how Blockbuster made the mistake of failing to move out of physical videos and into digital downloads and streaming. There are many other examples of such calamities and there will no doubt be many more because one of…

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Six months ago, we surveyed two different  high streets: Crouch End Broadway and Wood Green High Road both in the borough of Haringey, North London, to see in what ways they differ and what the emergence of the Wood Green Business Improvement District (BID) might mean for the fortunes of struggling Wood Green.  Now we…

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Welcome to our brand new series of articles on retailers that are operating in ways that provide some interesting and valuable lessons to the wider industry. Name: 5 Carlos Place Location: Heart of Mayfair, London W1 In a nutshell: MATCHESFASHION.COM is trying to reinvent what ‘shopping’ might mean for the Insta generation who define a…

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  Shopper behaviour is changing dramatically, with certain trends now becoming entrenched as the retail landscape continues to be redrawn as a result of the seismic impact of digital on all parts of-our daily lives. Among the key changes are the rise of micro-shopping, where consumers purchase frequent and often from a variety of retailers, and the expectation from shoppers…

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