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Stores the Next Generation: Podcast Series [The Industry partnership]

Welcome to Stores: The Next Generation, a new six-part podcast series produced in partnership with The Industry, the insights and intelligence destination for brands and retailers shaping the future of Fashion and Beauty. In this series we examine the future for physical retail in the post-pandemic world.

We will talk to major retailers and experts in store design and technology to discuss the role of the physical store and how it will change along with major shifts in consumer behaviour, which will result in us shopping more consciously, more carefully and more locally.

Critizr has produced a spotlight report for the Fashion and Beauty market, called The New Retail Journey, that can be downloaded here and the findings of this report have driven the content of these podcasts.

Session one: 

Claire Constantine, global retail director, and Sandra Byrne, Liverpool store manager at British-based, ethical beauty retailer Lush.

LUSH is a perfect example of a global brand that acts local. Its stores are located in neighbourhoods where the brand becomes embedded in the community. The company leverages the local know-how of its store managers, such as Sandra, to inform the individual strategies of each its stores and to advise the business on local engagement activities. As you will her having an expert on the ground such as Sandra has meant that Liverpool is now home to the world’s largest Lush store.

We talk about how the business has fared during lockdown, how it has innovated (with services such as delivery from local stores) to adapt to the new market conditions and how it plans to further engage with its customer base when its stores are able to open one again.

Lush

Session 2: 

Patrick van der Linden, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Digital Officer of leading French young fashion retailer Pimkie, which operates nearly 700 stores across 28 countries.

Patrick has been at the forefront of driving Pimkie’s “customer obsessed” strategy, which puts feedback from the customer as its centre.

He explains how the company has had to balance the global lockdowns, which has often meant vastly different restrictions being in place across its markets at any one time and how it has been deepening connections with its customers.

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Session 3: 

David Dalziel is Co-founder and Creative Director of Dalziel & Pow, the pre-eminent brand innovation studio that provides retail design and strategic advice to some of the high street’s biggest names from River Island to Primark, Molton Brown and Next.

David is something of a rock star when it comes to retail design and is one of the most respected voices on the present and future state of retail and consumer shopping trends. Lauretta Roberts, Editor in chief of TheIndustry.fashion speaks to David on what stores will look like after lockdown and how retail strategies will play out longer-term.  David also shares with us his vision for a flexible, more dynamic future for our stores and high streets.  

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Session 4: 

Lavinia Moxley is the Senior Manager – Global Advisor Talent and Education at global health & beauty giant Walgreens Boots Alliance, working on beauty powerhouses No7 and Liz Earle.

Lavinia has been instrumental in the group’s transformation of its offer and positioning in the beauty market, in particular, the iconic and historic No 7 beauty brand and how it has responded to the global pandemic – from a fast roll-out of digital technology and online tutorials to the transformation of staff training in record time. Lavinia also explains how the brand is looking forward to the re-opening of retail and how the learnings of the past year will inform the way it interacts with consumers.

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Session 5: 

Liz Houghton is CEO and Co-founder of premium women’s fashion brand and retailer Mint Velvet. The brand was born out of the last major crisis to hit Britain’s high streets, the financial crash of the late 2000s.

Houghton founded the brand, with a focus on relaxed glamour for the 30-plus woman, with two former colleagues Lisa Agar-Rea and Jane Rawlings in just three months, filling a gap in the market and becoming an almost instant success.

Today Mint Velvet is available on its own website, its chain of more than 40 stores and at John Lewis and Next.

The brand’s aesthetic has proved a hit during the Covid-19 lockdowns with online sales skyrocketing but its stores, often based in local neighbourhoods where staff know their customers personally, are crucial to its success.

Houghton tells Lauretta Roberts, Editor in Chief of TheIndustry.fashion, how the business has fared over the past 12 months and why she’s optimistic about the future of retail.

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Session 6:

Sandrine Deveaux, Executive Vice President of Future Retail at Farfetch, has always been at the vanguard of the digital retail revolution, having spotted the potential for luxury fashion to embrace technology to bridge the gap between the physical and the digital realms many years before it became a mainstream pursuit.

Her career in luxury fashion began with Matchesfashion, helping to launch what was then an independent retailer into a global online force.  After that she moved to luxury department store Harvey Nichols before meeting founder of Farfetch, the great visionary Jose Neves.

She joined Neves in his groundbreaking business which gives the world’s best fashion boutiques access to a global market through its platform.  Farfetch also works with leading luxury players, such as Chanel and its own boutique Browns, helping them to enhance the luxury shopping experience through the application of digital technology.

As Executive Vice President of Future Retail at Farfetch, it is Sandrine’s job to head up this side of the business.

Sandrine speaks to Lauretta Roberts, Editor in chief of TheIndustry.fashion about why luxury boomed during the pandemic, how consumer behaviour has changed for good, and why, despite being a digital retail trailblazer, she still believes in a bright future for physical retailers.

 

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