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Delightful customer experience - 27 Jul 2015

[Jessica Taylor, Group Editor (@Biz_Retail)] The CEM Africa Summit, held in Cape Town on 22 and 23 July, saw over 25 key industry players present keynotes, partake in panel discussions and facilitate workshops on customer experience, coverage of which will continue to be published this week. Leigh Andrews gets the ball rolling with the advisory panel opening on future trends and disruptive innovation and the influence this should have on customer experience management today. read more

Hello Frappuccino - 20 Jul 2015

[Jessica Taylor, Group Editor (@Biz_Retail)] Following Taste Holdings' announcement that Starbucks stores are soon to open across South Africa - starting with a Johannesburg café due to open early next year - Michael Wood raises concerns about the global brand's long-term sustainability, arguing that successful coffee shops have to create a total social experience based on attractive and inviting environments, innovative products and high quality service. Sane Mdlalose explains the post-2000 shift in consumer experiences and perceptions and advises how brands can maintain customer loyalty under the circumstances. Then some firsts for SA: Nedbank is the first South African bank to offer a big data service, more specifically, a data analytics tool that records customers' shopping behaviour, as well as income segmentation, gender and age demographics; and South Africa's first true escrow service, powered by Standard Bank, has been launched to provide a seamless and secure online purchasing experience. read more

All about customer experience - 13 Jul 2015

[Jessica Taylor, Group Editor (@Biz_Retail)] This week Amanda Stops, CEO of the South African Council of Shopping Centres, discusses four universal trends that are driving retail across the globe, namely customer experience, technology, adapting to change and leadership. Loyalty is another common theme, according to a new research report by GI Insight, which looks at how loyalty schemes can have a powerful impact on the outlook and actions of consumers in the age of big data. BMi Research CEO Gareth Pearson says that combined with big data, loyalty programmes have the potential to provide customers with a non-genetic value proposition that resonates with them personally. read more

Step downs and step ups - 6 Jul 2015

[Jessica Taylor, Group Editor (@Biz_Retail)] Tuesday alone saw two major international fashion icons step down, namely Donna Karan of DK International and Nike's chairman Phil Knight. Out of 140 steakhouses competing for the Wolftrap Steakhouse Championships, it was Little Havana in Umhlanga Rocks, KwaZulu-Natal that claimed the top honour while two-times winner The Local Grill in Parktown North, Johannesburg was judged the 2015 Runner-Up. read more

Fashion, fashion and more fashion - 29 Jun 2015

[Jessica Taylor, Group Editor (@Biz_Retail)] This week, I interview Relate CEO Neil Robinson on why social enterprise is changing, and Rolf Akermann explains why honesty is the best policy when it comes to packaging. In the world of fashion, African Fashion International announces that Mercedes-Benz has renewed its title sponsorship of Fashion Week for another three years, that it has appointed Tribeca Public Relations to manage all media interactions, and that the Cape Town event is moving to the V&A Waterfront. The search is on for Elle's next rising star. read more

Not soap and socks, not help desks - 22 Jun 2015

[Jessica Taylor, Group Editor (@Biz_Retail)] Quality time was at the top of Dad's wish list this Father's Day, according to the results of Pick n Pay's annual Father's Day survey, while research undertaken by Alcatel-Lucent finds that smartphone users want app-based self-service tools, not service provider help desks. Interesting findings for the retail marketer: international ad monitoring agency Frukt says that 65% of Africa's consumer spending is attributable to the "A Generation" as influencers of their parents' spending decisions, and that by 2020, the youth will dominate Africa's $1.3 trillion (+/-R180 trillion) consumer spending! And for the foodies, local chef Angelo Scirocco of Chefs Warehouse and Canteen on "Cape Town's hottest restaurant strip" has been selected to represent Africa at the S.Pellegrino Young Chef 2015 Grand Finale in Milan on Friday. read more

Nice to meat you - 15 Jun 2015

[Jessica Taylor, Group Editor (@Biz_Retail)] Hello, I'm Jessica, the new editor of Bizcommunity's retail newsletter. Besides the internal industry shift, I'm so excited about all the changes happening in the retail space... This week Nicci Botha reports back on Source Africa 2015 - the African apparel, textile and footwear trade event - covering a seminar on tools for developing international business, and the AGOA renewal and what it means for the next 10 years. An online revolution is changing everything from retailing to the real estate advertising landscape, and sees men forge ahead in mobile shopping. read more

Keep striding - 8 Jun 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] This week has seen several local retailers and international brands take huge strides across not only Africa, but the global playing field. Mr Price is planning its first stores in Australia; and Woolworths' recent Ozzie acquisition, David Jones, is branching out into New Zealand. read more

Attention - key to success - 1 Jun 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] In today's marketplace, products are constantly jostling for consumer attention. So how do you get it? Lauren Durant takes us through the bigger impact of experience vs. read more

Keep linking - 25 May 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] In the business of retail this week, we relink supply chain management], look at the increasingly relevant role of the flagship store, and unpack brand activation for FMCGs. We also welcome Krispy Kreme doughnuts to SA and see Spar looking to enter the Zambian market, while Oceana makes some big waves on the acquisition front. Retail and wholesale trade sales figures are both in for the month of March, although neither seem much to write home about. read more

Local is... - 18 May 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] In retail this week, we bust six myths about customer care; Generation Next picks SA's 'coolest' brands; and NAB's Marc du Plessis shares some insight from Dallas on 'National Brands, Local Marketing'. Entries are open for this year's Bollinger Exceptional Wine Service Award, and if you fancy yourself as a budding sommelier and are keen to fly the SA flag in France, the Cape Town and Durban entry legs for the Mosaic Protégé programme are coming up soon. read more

A fairytale wedding and other customer relations - 11 May 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] The e-tail wedding of the season has been prepping since the Competition Commission gave its blessing in January and it is now official - Takealot and Kalahari have tied the knot. Marking the end of an era in South African e-commerce history, Kalahari.com closed its virtual doors just over a week ago. read more

Short 'n sweet - 4 May 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] For those who took advantage of the wonderfully short week to cash in some vacation time, here's what you missed... Clover has received the green light from the Competition Commission for the acquisition of Nkunzi Milkyway, which will see the company producing dairy products, including Ayrshire and organic milk, for Woolworths. We had a look at the key questions an entrepreneur should ask when deciding to invest in a franchise, and the Global e-Commerce Logistics 2015 report shows us that e-tail will fail without efficient delivery systems. Bizcommunity's Leigh Andrews finds out how to build a strong brand with some advice from Casaerstone's Trevor King. And finally, a new trend in the packaging industry - fruit wrapped like confectionery...? Have a sweet week! read more

On the plus side... - 20 Apr 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] Last week brought a pleasant surprise to economists as retail trades sales for February rose an unexpected 4.2%, while food and beverage income was up 5% for the same month, it was announced today. Local restaurants are making strides north of our border with Maxi's having opened its first stores in Botswana, and Spur opening its first franchise in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Broll Retail Consumer Survey reports that muted growth is expected for the retail sector, but that won't be stopping retailers from going ahead with expansion plans. With research revealing that smartphones are often the path to purchase, it's no wonder that entrepreneurs and e-commerce are a smart match. And finally, Nicolette Singh explains why personalisation is a personal touch... Have a fabulous week! read more

Happiness is... - 13 Apr 2015

[Shan Radcliffe, Group Head - Retail (@Biz_Retail)] The Easter holidays are officially over for most of us, and if you were lucky enough to have taken all of last week off, here is what you missed... On Thursday, Woolworths announced a multi-faceted collaboration with Mr Happy himself, Pharrell Williams. The partnership, running with the call-to-action "Are you with us?", will see Williams take on the role of Style Director across a series of sustainability-focused projects for the retailer. read more

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