STORE SPACES

JGA names VP of ops

BY Marianne Wilson

JGA has named Ed Doyle as VP of operations.

Prior to joining JGA, Doyle was director of store design & construction at Art Van Furniture, Warren, Mich. Previously, he was senior design project manager and lead program manager of sustainability at Target Corp.

At JGA, Doyle will support strategic growth and oversee day-to-day operations including project implementation, business development support and client success, as well as staff operations and development.

“In addition to being an award-winning, registered architect, Ed is a proven results-oriented leader with the breadth and depth of knowledge across retail, mixed-use, commercial and public sector projects emphasizing teamwork, collaboration, and value,” said JGA executive VP & chief strategy officer Joanne Healy. “He has significant experience in building and leveraging top-tier teams that are accountable and respected for their skills and accomplishments.”

Founded in 1971 and headquartered in Southfield, Michigan, JGA has executed retail design and brand strategies for many leading brands, including Hershey’s, Sleep Number, Sundance, Blue Nile and Whole Foods Market.

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STORE SPACES

First Look: Starbucks debuts premium store format

BY Marianne Wilson

Starbucks Corp. has opened its Reserve store, a new upscale format that combines higher-end coffees with freshly-made Italian goods and, in the afternoon and evening, cocktails.

Located on the main floor of the coffee giant’s Seattle headquarters and open to the public, Reserve features some elements of Starbucks’ immersive Reserve Roastery format, mainly brewing and roasting techniques and small-lot coffees. It is the first of 1,000 Reserve stores Starbucks plans to open.

Reserve is designed in an open, marketplace style and includes community tables and lounge areas around two fireplaces. It serves food from Princi, the Italian artisanal bakery that Starbucks has an investment in, and offers a view of the Princi kitchen, where customers can see such items as breads pizzas prepared daily. The space also includes a full bar serving traditional Italian cocktails.

“While our Roasteries are designed to be bold, educational environments, our Reserve store takes the best of coffee craft as well as artisan baking and layers in a marketplace-style customer experience creating a space that has both energy and moments of intimacy” said Liz Muller, senior VP, creative, global design & innovation.

Starbucks co-founder and executive chairman Howard Schultz, who stepped down as CEO last year to oversee the Roastery and Reserve initiatives, said the opening of the first Reserve “marks another significant milestone as we have taken everything we have learned from our highly successful Roasteries, the relevancy of the third place and the overwhelming reception of freshly baked Princi food to an environment that will re-define customer connection and continue to serve as a halo to the rest of the business.”

In addition to expanding Reserve, Starbucks plans to open standalone Princi locations in Seattle, Chicago and New York, and Roasteries in Milan and New York later this year, in addition to Tokyo and Chicago in, 2019.

For more slideshows, click here.

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Infiniti Research: Four hot retail trends

BY Marianne Wilson

As advanced technology continues to disrupt and revolutionize the retail industry, global market intelligence company Infinti Research has released a list of four top trends that retailers need to be aware of as they move through 2018.

• Experiential retailing – Revamping in-store experience: The invention of online shopping has declined the demand for brick and mortar stores, but hesitant attitude among customers to trust online shopping might save the retail stores from dying. Top retailers need to understand how to attract more customers, and one of the top trends is to make a memorable shopping experience for customers. For example, Glossier’s retail store in New York City is pure Instagram candy — customers will want to shop and capture every moment on Instagram as every detail serves as social content.

• Expect more of AI and AR: Companies have been using advanced technologies like AI and AR in the retail industry to boost their performance. This trend is expected to continue in 2018, resulting in the growing popularity of experience customization. For example, Starbucks reserve roastery in Shanghai has a digital web app that acts as a virtual tour guide for customers, by pointing their smartphone at a piece of equipment, the app will explain how coffee is processed in that machine.

• Personalization: the key to creating a connect: The growing demand of customers to own and experience things that are unique has fueled this trend of customization, which is one of the trends that has been on the rise from 2017 in the retail industry. Customers of today are giving more importance to experiences over physical items. When they buy a product, they want those items to tell a story. It becomes more exciting for shoppers when they are given the opportunity to build and customize their products. For example, Dresden, an eyewear retailer allows shoppers create their own pairs of sunglasses by interchanging the lenses and frame parts as per their desire.

• Data will drive retail decisions: Data’s role in retail decision-making will rise, especially as technologies like Big data and machine learning continue to mature. Using useful customer data for sales, marketing, and after-sales services will be among the widely seen retail industry trends in 2018.

An example of retailers success using big data is Target. The company correlated its baby shower registry with its Guest ID program and was able to identify other products that pregnant women were most likely to purchase. As a result, Target was able to showcase their unique offers for pregnant women.

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