Simply ask a multi-entrepreneur like Ronald van Zetten one question, and get a clear analysis of what is going wrong on the high street today. The man who is giving V&D a second lease of life as a web platform, isn't letting go of the idea of a physical store: "setting up one somewhere in town? I'm going to give it some serious thought. We're living exciting times!"
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With their long-term outlook, family businesses are having to dig in to survive the transformation affecting the retail sector, says Adam Fenwick. Department stores need to adapt, embrace new technology and reflect the needs and aspirations of their local community...
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Large flagship stores continue to distinguish themselves through their unique experience and local anchoring, according to former Kaufhof leader Olivier Van den Bossche. Department stores might also take on the role of omni-channel hubs in the future.
The most beautiful department store in Switzerland is located in the centre of Zürich. 185 year old Jelmoli has only one branch these days, but it is an exceptional one! The owner, Swiss Prime Site, has invested heavily in the iconic building and CEO Franco Savastano conducts a distinctive and successful course.
In order to be successful again, department stores need to return to their origins: large flagship stores that amaze the shopper with an unrivaled assortment, flawless service and a unique experience. "The average doesn’t work for department stores."
Department stores shouldn’t be afraid of the digital world, they should embrace it. At the same time, it is all about maintaining the right focus: luxury, emotion, entertainment and service are more important than price.
De Bijenkorf aims for a wow effect and wants to adds luxury, but wants to remain accessible: a balancing act where every detail matters. This also applies to the web shop, because the most valuable customer shops both offline and online.
For André Maeder, KaDeWe is the department store of all department stores, a shop that unites under one roof the very best shopping ideas worldwide and builds on a vibrant history. For department stores that make the right choices, there is more to the future than ever before.
The department store is a monument, very much like a church or museum, explains Vittorio Radice. It is about experience, not products. The product comes and goes, the store remains.
As a child she was impressed by the perfume sellers at Vroom and Dreesmann, later she started working at V&D and Karstadt. The love for department stores remains, says Debbie Klein in our interview series 'A Love for Department Stores'.
Are department stores a relic of the past, or do they contain seeds for the future of retail? That is the central question in our interview series ‘A love for department stores’, where we will discuss the challenges and opportunities for the business with a selection of leading voices in retail.
In collaboration with international retail expert Erik Van Heuven, RetailDetail sets out to explore the world of department stores. A series of interviews with entrepreneurs and managers will map the challenges and opportunities for the industry.