Hearing specialist Lapperre is launching a new, accessible retail concept in Belgium: World of Hearing, a centre that consumers can visit without any purchase obligation or appointment. After the first branch in Ghent, more will follow soon.
"Although more than one million adults in Belgium have to deal with hearing loss, under one in three of them decides to tackle the problem with hearing aids", says managing director Marc Heymans of Sonova Retail Belgium, the group that owns Lapperre. The barrier is still too high for many: "On average, it takes Belgians around seven years to decide to address the issue."
That is why the group developed a new, very accessible store concept: today it opens its World of Hearing in Ghent, where people can have a look, take a hearing test or find out about the most modern solutions for hearing problems without any obligations and without an appointment.
Indicative hearing test
In a Self Screening Room, you can take a first indicative hearing test on your own. In the Experience Room, you can try out the latest hearing aids in 3D. Here, people with normal hearing can also truly experience what it feels like to have reduced hearing. Tables with touch screens provide more information about the devices.
A professional team of audiologists guides and informs customers about common issues such as tinnitus and a mild degree of hearing loss. Finally, the digital otoscan is used to make detailed scans of the ear, and they form the basis for customised in-the-ear hearing aids or earpieces.
World of Hearing is an international concept: it started with a successful pilot concept in the Dutch city of Dordrecht three years ago. Meanwhile, the formula has been introduced in Canada and New Zealand and the European countries Denmark, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands.
After opening the first branch in Ghent, several other branches in our country will follow in due course. "We consider World of Hearing to be the hearing centre of the future, where expertise and experience take centre stage. With this combination, we also want to make the road to a life without hearing loss smooth and easy in Belgium", Heymans says.