OPERATIONS

Planet Retail commentary on Tesco’s new CEO

BY Staff Writer

London — Natalie Berg, global research director at Planet Retail, commented:

“As a branding expert, Lewis’ first task will be to define Tesco. Philip Clarke himself has admitted that the brand has baggage. It doesn’t stand for value, yet it doesn’t stand for quality, and without a clear proposition we fear that Tesco will continue to lose customers to more relevant and better-defined channels.

(See related story: Tesco CEO to be replaced by Unilever exec)

“Being the first ‘outsider’ CEO in Tesco history, Lewis will quickly need to prove that having no direct retail experience isn’t necessarily an impediment to taking on the biggest job in U.K. retail. The board will be relying on his significant FMCG experience to help steer Tesco safely through the increasingly-fractious price skirmishes currently unsettling the industry.

“Despite Clarke’s relatively short, bumpy stint at the top, we have to remember that when he inherited the business three years ago, the focus was very much on international operations – some of which have since rightly

“Although we feel Clarke has made significant progress on refreshing existing stores, the fundamental issue remains – shoppers are no longer making that big weekly trip to an out-of-town superstore. Unfortunately for Tesco, over half of its stores fall in the 50,000+sq.-ft. bracket.*

“A change in leadership may bring some much-needed fresh thinking to Tesco, but the structural shifts in the grocery sector cannot be reversed. Lewis will need to reposition Tesco to adapt to this new normal.”

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REAL ESTATE

Fendi opens fun pop-up in Manhattan

BY Marianne Wilson

New York — Italian luxury brand Fendi has opened a pop-up, called #fendisoho in Manhattan’s SoHo neighborhood. The 630-sq.-ft. store will be open until the end of the year.

The merchandise will rotate on a monthly basis, with different themes that reflect the breadth of the brand’s offerings. The first collection is devoted to accessories, or what Fendi calls “must-have mini-icons.”

The store is a mix of the sophisticated — leather and velvet are among the featured materials — with such playful touches as Illuminated hashtag signs on the wall. The fun arcade-themed décor includes custom vending machines, where products dangle from mechanical claws.

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OPERATIONS

Urban Decay launches online product discovery tool

BY Dan Berthiaume

New York – L’Oreal cosmetics brand Urban Decay has partnered with Compare Metrics to launch its online product discovery solution. The Compare Metrics solution for Urban Decay includes content curation, adaptive navigation and shopping scenarios.

The Compare Metrics Content Curation Team has added a new layer of merchandising language to help shoppers quickly find desired Urban Decay product. The team was able to utilize existing product detail page content to create attributes such as “finish,” but decision-critical attributes like “color” and “shade” were created and tagged as new product data.

When compared to a control group running simultaneously, preliminary shopper response results include: 17% average engagement rate, above-average engagement rate of nine times per session, and 16% higher conversion rate.

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