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In other news… Habitat launches click and collect; Localz raises £3.6m

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Habitat customers can now pick up their online orders from more than 2,300 click and collect locations, including more than 200 Sainsbury’s branches.

Shoppers will also be able to pick up their purchases from DPD Pickup points across the UK. The move is part of Habitat’s strategy to improve its multichannel service, especially important since more than 60% of its sales start online. The retailer, ranked as a Top500 trader in IRUK Top500 research, upgraded the website 18 months ago and says its online customer base is growing “rapidly”.

Habitat managing director Clare Askem said: “The way our customers want to shop with us is changing and we’ve worked hard at evolving our digital offer at pace to meet this demand. Over 60% of our sales are now generated online so giving customers the choice of fast delivery to a collection point close to where they live or work at a time that’s convenient makes sound business sense. Our customers increasingly want speed, flexibility and choice and our aim is to develop the Habitat brand into a multichannel business for the digital age, more accessible to an increasingly online customer base and to provide a flexible delivery proposition that works around modern life.”

• Localz, which is working with customers including Woolworths, DPD and British Gas in its bid to transform the last mile of delivery, has won investment of £3.6m. DPD Group owners GeoPost SA were among the investors in the series A round, led by venture capital firm Notion Capital. Localz, a former JLAB winner, integrates data and location intelligence in order to enable first time delivery.

Now the company is planning on a US launch, and expects to double in size by the middle of next year.

Tim Andrew, co-founder and chief executive of Localz, said: “This investment means we are exceptionally well positioned to continue leading the exponential growth in our category through 2018 and beyond. From the start we set out to build a genuinely differentiated technology firm that can address the growing consumer demand for products and services when and where they want them. A category we have defined as ‘Iconomy Fulfilment’.”

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