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From Cos and Aldi to Deliveroo and Grosvenor: reinventing physical retail

Cos' new circular design store in Stockholm. Image: Are Lindman/courtesy of Cos

New kinds of shops are emerging, both as customers return in-store post-Covid-19 and as retailers look to become more sustainable. Both fashion retailer Cos and grocer Aldi have introduced new environmentally-friendly store concepts. Delivery company Deliveroo has launched its first shop, in partnership with Morrisons, and property owner Grosvenor is venturing into high fashion.

Cos: focusing on circular design

Cos has opened its first store to reflect a new circular design store concept. The new store, on Biblioteksgatan, Stockholm, has more sustainable material and fittings and is designed to ensure that its interiors last longer.

The retail brand, part of H&M Group, says the new store features 66% more recycled material than the original Cos store design – from the flooring, which has been developed to fully reflect circular design principles of being both recycled and recyclable, to aluminium rails that are 30% recycled, 100% recycle polystyrene mannequins and the removal of concrete fixings, which represented a heavy use of carbon. 

Lloyd Goldby, global head of growth at Cos, says: “Bringing our new store concept to life has been a brand-wide efforts developed by our talented team of in-house designers and supported by sustainability, interiors and built environment specialists. Whether through endlessly recyclable material or by reallocating store material in new openings, our new concept is a huge step towards becoming a more conscious brand and we are excited to introduce it to more markets in the future.”

Grosvenor: The Mayfair Maison

Central London property developer and manager Grosvenor has has unveiled its new take on designer shopping – a Mayfair townhouse reinvented as a pop-up store for three days. The Mayfair Maison will feature goods from a range of UK fashion clothing and footwear brands – including collectable pieces worn by celebrities including Naomie Harris and Emily Blunt. 

Grosvenor says that brands including Jenny Packham, J&M Davidson, Malone Souliers, Roksanda and more will be showcased in the 18th century townhouse where shoppers can browse and try on clothing, available at discounts of up to 60%. The pop-up runs from October 14 to 16 at 38 Grosvenor Square. 

Grosvenor says the initiative is part of its strategy to create leading retail destinations and experiences and recast the traditional property owner-occupier relationship as a genuine long-term partnership. Alongside pop-up stores, the strategy also includes a retail concierge enabling small and independent brands to launch shops, and simplified leases that enable retailers to agree leases and have access to retail premises within days. 

Joanna Lea, director of retail at Grosvenor, says: “In an iconic Mayfair property not often open to the public, we’re showcasing the best of British design in a way that’s accessible to a wider audience. The Mayfair Maison is the latest in a line of experiences we’ve created to drive awareness of the many exceptional businesses based here and cement the area’s status as one of the capital’s most exciting retail destinations. It’s also a first for a property owner to create this kind of experience for its occupiers.

“This is the next step in our aim to redefine what it means to be a property owner. By transforming a transactional relationship into a valued partnership that benefits everyone – we want to make the choice of landlord as important as location to a brand.”

Aldi: reducing store carbon emissions

Aldi has opened a new eco concept store in Royal Leamington Spa. It says the store aims to use sustainable building materials and new approaches to design that are set to reduce the carbon emissions of the store by up to two-thirds over its lifetime. Solar panels and chiller doors are among the feature that help to reduce energy use by 57% compared to a standard Aldi shop.  The car park also has dedicated electric vehicle charging. 

At the same time, it is designed to make it easier for shoppers to reduce, reuse and recycle through measures including plastic reduction schemes. 

Features include a ‘hard to recycle’ unit for goods including coffee pods, medicine packets, batteries, soft plastics and cosmetic packaging that are currently not collected by local authorities. The store also offers packaging free nuts and coffee, which shoppers can buy using their own containers or paper bags.

Giles Hurley, chief executive officer for Aldi UK and Ireland, says: “Now more than ever, we must do our bit for the environment and this store offers us the ability to easily explore new in-store initiatives and low carbon store designs. We are committed to reducing our environmental impact in any way we can and are continuing to explore new initiatives all the time.

“What’s even better is that many of the changes made to this store, whether it be the energy-saving initiatives or our latest packaging-free trial, could allow us to put even more money back into the pockets of our customers. We’re focusing on continuing to deliver our longstanding price promise by offering the lowest possible prices in Britain, every single day.”

Deliveroo: bricks and clicks retailing

Delivery company Deliveroo has now moved into the physical retail space, opening its first shop on London’s New Oxford Street, in partnership with supermarket Morrisons. Customers can order from a range of 1,700 products on the Deliveroo app for collection or delivery, or can buy via in-store through digital kiosks.

The launch follows on from Deliveroo research suggesting that 40% of shoppers now buy groceries every two to three days, while 24% of Londoners use rapid grocery services once a week. 

Eric French, chief operating officer at Deliveroo, says: “We’re opening our doors and welcoming commuters, local residents, visitors and day-trippers into our first Deliveroo high-street grocery store in the UK. Our New Oxford Street store promises a new way to shop for Deliveroo customers, giving them even greater flexibility and choice and should help boost the local area with nearly two thirds of shoppers saying they will visit other nearby shops as they come to shop with Deliveroo.”

Hannah Horsfall, head of wholesale at Morrisons, says: “The launch of Deliveroo Hop’s first bricks-and-mortar store represents another key moment in our partnership.  The store will not only offer customers a wide choice of groceries from Morrisons but also a variety of ways to shop for them.”

Helen Dickinson, chief executive at the British Retail Consortium, says:“We are increasingly seeing the lines between digital and physical retail blurring, and this announcement is an innovative example of investing to meet the diverse needs and preferences of customers. With challenges ahead for consumers, retailers are now working harder than ever to deliver convenience and affordability for everyone.”

Deliveroo opens its doors with the Deliveroo HOP grocery store on New Oxford Street. Image courtesy of Deliveroo

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