“We look at retail as an opportunity,” vice-president, global partner retail and real estate for Levi Strauss, Stefan Otte, said. “Our overall belief is that retail will grow. The number of retailers will probably shrink but the retail market will grow. If we just look at Europe, Levi’s opened one store every week for the last five years,” he said. The company calls it “curated expansion”, he added, ensuring such stores still meet customer needs in a specific area.
But Levi’s is targeting scale too. “Do we open smaller stores? No, we don’t. On the contrary we are targeting 150 to 200 sq m stores. It’s what is required to represent the brand in its entirety and experience. With e-commerce people need more of a reason to go to stores than they did yesterday,” he said.
Dario Morin, retail development manager at Benetton, said retailers today have to adapt their marketing focus to address the change in purchasing behaviour. “We have to change from the marketing mix based on the four p’s to the new one based on four e’s – emotion, experience, ecological and e-commerce. Now it’s about how does this garment make me feel. The experience is the quality of service and store. I want to feel the energy of the store. Ecological and environmental is one of the drivers for millennials. And e-commerce is obvious.”
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