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Switzerland’s Galaxus looks to disrupt German ecommerce 'jungle'

Alongside products, the Galaxus site also offers reviews and a user community.
Alongside products, the Galaxus site also offers reviews and a user community.

A Swiss retailer has launched a new site in Germany, with the aim of becoming one of the top five ecommerce players in Europe’s largest economy.

 

Digitec Galaxus, which is the market leader for ecommerce in Switzerland, launched the Galaxus Deutschland site at the beginning of the month, featuring around 50,000 electronics products.

 

The company plans to expand into other product areas over the next few months.

 

As well as offering products, Galaxus features a community of users which offer advice, incentivised through raffles for tickets to events. On the Swiss sites, three quarters of product queries are resolved by other users within three hours. It also offers comparison services and allows purchasers to review products.

 

Its footprint in Germany will consist of a head office in Hamburg with 10 employees and a logistics site at Krefeld in North Rhine-Westphalia. The centre, which features 5500 square metres of floor space and 500 square metres of office and working space, has the capacity for over 20,000 products and will allow Galaxus to offer next-day delivery across the country.

 

The company will begin its push in Germany through extensive online marketing.

 

Frank Hasselmann, MD of the new Germany operation, said that the current ecommerce market of Germany “doesn’t satisfy everyone; consumers are looking for online shopping advice and get lost in a jungle of products.

 

“Our independent 20-member editorial team supplies background information on our product range in in-depth articles, product review and reports, represents a clear opinion and inspires users who are looking for products.

 

“On top of this, we provide our customers with clever product filters and comparison features. Moreover, we have an active community of users who have a great deal of expertise, which they are happy to share.”

 

Florian Teuteberg, CEO of Digitec Galaxus, said that the medium-term aim is to become one of the top five ecommerce players in Germany.

 

Teuteberg said that while the company is headed for sales of CHF 1 billion in the current financial year in its home market, there is still room for growth there.

 

“But we believe we can compete with Galaxus on an international level. If you want to keep up with the best, the development of your online shop takes more and more effort. It makes no sense for us to put all this work in, only for our rather small home market. The growth potential in Europe is huge.”

 

Though it bills itself as a start-up, 70% of Digitec Galaxus shares are owned by the Swiss retail group Migros, which also owns Denner and LeShop.ch.

 

To achieve its ambitious aims in Germany, Galaxus Deutschland will face some stiff competition.

 

According to data by the EHI Retail Institute, Amazon is the top ecommerce player in Germany by a long way, followed by Otto. Clothing seller Zalando comes in at third place.

 

The remaining two places in the top five are taken by consumer electronics specialists notebooksbilliger.de and MediaMarktSaturn. Of the two, notesbooksbilinger.de already offers an online forum for users to provide assistance to each other.

 

Digitec Galaxus in numbers:

2017 revenue: CHF 861 million (€753 million)

Employees: 1265

 

Image credit: Digitec Galaxus

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