Innesco at EXPO REAL
This week, team Innesco jetted off to München for EXPO REAL; a cornerstone in our annual events calendar. As a very business-focused trade fair, EXPO has always proven to be a great forum for us to expand and enrich our network of global real estate contacts, launch new working relationships and help our clients to elevate the profile of their property projects on an international platform.
This year’s event was no different, and, in fact, proved to be the busiest and most dynamic in recent memory, with organisers quoting a record number of visitors. It was inspiring to see so much potential in the global real estate industry. The UK & Ireland Investor Pavilion in particular drew in the crowds, demonstrating current interest across retail opportunities and other flagship projects, despite the perceived uncertainty in the UK market.
In between conferences we caught up with companies including @THRealEstate14, Invesco, Nakheel, @e_locations and @Drees_Sommer, each of which are shaping the sector in their own way. The digital transformation of real estate was perhaps the most prevalent theme when it came to discussions over the future of the industry as developers, construction companies, investors and asset managers were all eager to emphasise their commitment to enhancing their buildings with digital strategies.
The best of digital transformation is yet to come – we’ll soon be off again, next time to Cannes for @MAPICWorld‘s main event, which will revolve around the exciting prospects of physical retail in the age of digital. Want to meet with us there? Get in touch, and keep an eye out for our stand in the UK Pavilion!
Suitsupply is tailoring for a new age of retail
This week, @Drapers visited @suitsupply’s store in London’s West End to talk to its founder Fokke de Jong. In a retail climate often described as challenging, the brand has consistently had a year-on-year revenue growth of between 20 and 25 per cent. De Jong says that he found in men’s tailoring a niche that was “begging for disruption”. Disruption it got: shortly after its launch in 2000 – long before omnichannel was the word on everybody’s lips – it managed to strike the perfect balance between offering the convenience of an online store and the personal service made possible by bricks-and-mortar. Suitsupply’s physical stores were never purely transactional places but offered services such as in-store pickup of orders placed online, as well as personalised tailoring services.
In a time where the lines between online and physical are becoming increasingly blurred – with hashtag #phygital trending on Twitter – Suitsupply is leading the way. The brand is currently testing a tool where shoppers will be able to select products online that will be ready to be tried on in store. We have recently seen similar initiatives by Hammerson and H&M’s new multi-brand outlet, Afound, and it has proved to be an effective way of encouraging shoppers to visit shopping destinations.
Getting customers into stores has never been an issue for Suitsupply, despite its strategy to steer clear of conventional shopping destinations in favour of lower-cost locations. Offering that little something extra means customers are happily seeking out stores despite their absence on the high street. Suitsupply’s online offering also plays a big role when it comes to opening new stores as well, with online data being used to determine popularity across regions and thereby where the brand should open next.
Something worth noting when it comes to the merging of physical and digital is that, in an increasingly digital world, consumers are craving something from bricks-and-mortar that online simply cannot offer. When Westfield recently unveiled its vision for the future of retail, known as ‘Destination 2028’ – a concept heavily reliant on digital initiatives such as magic mirrors and personalised recommendations based on eye-scanning – it was interesting to see that the concept was driven, not by technology, but by social interaction and community. As successful as Suitsupply has been online, its heartbeat has always been something highly traditional – tailoring. Quite suitable for a brand going by the mantra “Don’t just fit in, find your perfect fit”.
Congratulations to Andrew Smith, new Senior Account Executive
We are delighted to announce the promotion of Account Executive Andrew Smith to the position of Senior Account Executive. Andrew joined us back in March 2017 after completing his Msc in Corporate Communications.
The Innesco team is comprised of energetic and passionate real estate professionals and each member brings an expertise from across the UK, internationally and different areas of the sector. Andrew is a talented communicator with creative flair and his expertise has supported the biggest names in retail property, including the likes of Landsec, Hermes, MAPIC, and New West End Company (one of the world’s largest business improvement districts).
Since he joined the company, he has brought innovation and been a valued member of the team. “I couldn’t be happier to take the next step in my career at Innesco. There are exciting times ahead as we continue to diversify, innovate, expand our global reach and grow our expertise. Watch this space.”, comments Andrew Smith
Andrew’s promotion comes after yet another successful year for Innesco, having secured a number of new prestigious clients and delivering a multitude of successful campaigns and bespoke services.
The intelligence behind Amazon’s ‘4-Star’
This week, @amazon launched its first general store in Soho, New York City. Aptly named ‘4 Star’, the store is stocked solely with Amazon’s 4-star + rated products.
Contrary to the traditional retail model, where inventory is decided by buyers following market research and a fair number of assumptions, 4 Star’s collections are curated based on a rich pool of customer feedback. It’s perhaps the e-commerce heavyweight’s most proficient use of data to date in its strategic push into bricks-and-mortar, allowing shelves to be filled with items that almost guarantee success, while most competitors continue to be burdened by inventory carrying costs.
The customer experience factor at play here is equally impressive. Any consumer technology company worth its salt innovates with a single overarching question in mind: “how can we make our customers’ lives easier?” Amazon’s consumer behavior insight is second-to-none, in this case recognizing customers’ habit of checking prices and ratings online before purchasing. 4 Star seamlessly relieves this urge and all of the inconveniences it may cause, such as the excruciating requirements for tapping into a store’s wifi.
Amazon’s marrying of the physical and digital realms of retail experience continues to excite and delight us at Innesco, and we’ll be keeping our eye on ripples caused in the wider retail industry. Indeed, Amazon’s ‘4 Star’ is much more than a one-stop shop for well-liked goods; it’s the latest in a rapid stream of reminders that Amazon is the biggest disruptor in contemporary retail.More
Jack’s brings it home
Tesco has now opened its new discount chain, named Jack’s – and the branding really brings it all home, with 80% of product offerings being British.
According to Campaign magazine, customers revealed that local produce and low costs were the most important aspects influencing their purchasing choices. Research by analysts at IGD Retail Analysis revealed that 27% of shoppers think that British or locally-sourced produce make them view a product as one to have better quality. Meanwhile, almost 50% agreed it’s more important to use local suppliers, and 68% believe supermarkets should focus more on selling food produced by British farmers.
Therefore, Jack’s offers 1,800 of the products sourced from the UK, with packaging and in-store branding clearly giving tribute to British suppliers and sources, along with the intention of being “the cheapest in town”. Although the grocer’s competitors Aldi and Lidl also have strong messaging around “being British”, Jack’s differentiation comes from the fact that the majority of products are made, grown or reared in Britain.
The move to promote a distinct, local brand isn’t new. In 2017, Morrisons focused on local production and supplier relationships, adding 750 new local items and 200 British suppliers. Consumer demand increased for local goods, as customers ‘interested’ in buying local produce had risen by 7% between 2016-2017. Unilever also focused on local products in response to the “return of nationalism” for consumers due to the appetite for local products in early 2017, marketing certain products that proved more popular for local consumers than others across Europe.
If Jack’s is simply the newest addition to the trend, what distinct edge does it have to compete against its counterparts? Firstly, it offers consumers local and cheaper prices to its European imported counterparts, one of the main concerns the retail industry is facing after the Brexit decision. Secondly, its parent company, Tesco, has engaged in several strategic moves that ensure Jack’s will attract a distinct consumer. For instance, its partnership with Carrefour Group will allow it to introduce more variety and introduce French products at lower prices, while Jacks will remain truly at heart, British. In either case, with a decision to leave Europe leaving consumers weary about their spending and choices, both Tesco and Jack’s have offered a sigh of relief.More
The technological truth about Farfetch
The ease of shopping on Farfetch has no doubt contributed to its mass appeal amongst millennials seeking convenient retail therapy. The same can be said for its vast network of brand partnerships with both established luxury names and up-and-coming designers. However, it’d be far too easy to package up Farfetch’s success and, its recent move to launch its IPO, as just another indication that accessibility and variety are driving the prevalence of e-commerce. There is another factor at play here, alluding to what it takes to be successful, not just in online retail, but modern retail in general.
Farfetch made sure to mention in its filing that 35% of its employees at the end of 2017 were in the technology and product department, made up of over 800 full-time data scientists, engineers, and production staff. What’s more, the company laid out its plan to increase its headcount of data scientists and engineers to around 1,500 by the end of 2018. To put it simply, and in the words of Farfetch itself, it’s a technology company at its core, operating “at the intersection of luxury fashion, online commerce, and technology.” (Forbes, 2018)
Understanding exactly which products work, forecasting trends, optimizing pricing and identifying key customers and how best to reach them are core requirements of any successful retailer. Farfetch is able to fulfill them much better than most with inventory, behavioral and transactional data for over 335,000 unique units from more than 3,200 brands. That’s not to mention the rich pool of global data held by its two primary investors, China’s e-commerce giant, JD.com and Condé Nast owner, Advanced Publications, which Farfetch has access to.
This particular case represents a big win for e-commerce. However, the key to the future of retail is that we refrain from thinking about data solely in terms of online, as it also has vast potential to enhance the experience of bricks-and-mortar. Cushman and Wakefield Spain, for example, has recently launched its ‘Infinity Platform’. Through visitors’ interaction with its shopping centers as well as geolocation and Smart Data, the platform collects, analyses and processes information about shoppers. Algorithms then allow centers to send hyper-segmented information to visitors in real time, anticipate behavior and provide a tailored experience. Cushman predicts that the platform will allow it to perfectly understand 60% of its Spanish customers in five year’s time.
Whether online, in a shopping centre, or on the high street, allowing customers to have their own personalized shopping experience is not only bound to surprise and delight but is crucial for retailers to thrive and survive. This will only come with investment in innovation and technology – the latter being the keyword for future-proofing retail. Funnily enough, it came up a total of 173 times in Farfetch’s filing.More
Redefining the future of real estate with more ‘flexibility’
This week, Property Investor Europe spoke with New York-based flexible office company Knotel; one of an increasing number of office providers whose “funky and functional spaces” across Europe and the U.S offer the short-term lease options that more and more occupiers are demanding in today’s market. Knotel ensures that their spaces are clean, functional and adaptable to their clients’ needs – so much so that they can capture the brand values of the numerous companies that occupy them. Edward Shenderovich, founder and chairman of Knotel, describes its offices as “sets of Lego blocks” that can be configured in different ways and turned over quickly, while still capturing the unique essence of any one company’s culture.
Landlords such as Knotel are a hot topic when discussing the future of real estate, with ‘flexible’ being the key buzzword. However, important to consider is that the concept of flexibility doesn’t necessarily have to mean exceptionally short leases and modes of office ‘assembly’ over construction. Rather, flexibility is being embraced in different forms by forward-thinking developers across the board. Take The Commercial Park Group, for example, who’s vision to deliver 2 million sq ft of high-quality office space in the South East of England, on the doorstep of major national and international transport links, is rooted in the concept of driving flexible lifestyles outside of London. TCPG is offering the skilled workforce in areas such as Crawley, Haywards Heath, and Bromley, the opportunity to work closer to home and spend more time enriching their wellbeing with friends and family. Combined with its integrated approach to master planning that will create green, attractive and comfortable destinations for business, rather than just functional office buildings, TCPG is certain to attract interest from major international companies looking for permanent headquarters.
The rise of office developers that we have come to know as ‘flexible’ has certainly added an exciting new dimension to a commercial real estate in response to the increasing demand for space from start-ups in tech and creative industries. However, by attributing greater focus to building in the right locations and adopting a design approach conducive to workers’ well-being, there is no reason that traditional developers and landlords seeking longer-term tenants can’t be dubbed flexible too.
Andrew Smith, Account Executive, InnescoMore
Join us! We are hiring for two Senior Accounts Managers
Start Date: Immediate
Location: Central London + travel
Are you a confident, savvy communicator with aspirations to hold a senior management role in a dynamic and vibrant agency environment? Have you worked in the sector for three years or more and want to see your expertise recognised amongst brilliant colleagues?
This is a fantastic opportunity to join a world-class consultancy as a talented Account Manager or Senior Account Manager where you’ll not only get the exposure you deserve, but you’ll get to manage blue-chip accounts for some of the industry’s most exciting and progressive real estate businesses and players.
This is a role that will fast-track your career as part of a small but fantastic team, work directly with first class clients and accounts. You’ll build more amazing relationships with existing clients and suppliers, utilize your proven experience in real estate, and support and manage the wider Innesco team on its accounts in the UK and internationally (we currently operate in over 15 countries).
The successful applicant will play an important role in the team, handling some of the consultancy’s most important accounts, managing junior executives, and reporting into an Account Director and the MD – Dan Innes.
Innesco also runs a valuable bonus and incentive scheme to reward management staff – supporting our focus on new business growth and outperformance against clear business targets.
- Real Estate and/or retail sector experience – ideally with some agency experience or a proven ability to manage a wide range of stakeholders and thrive meeting tight deadlines
- Established network of journalist contacts
- A proven communicator –emotionally intelligent, yet socially aware
- Exceptional English language drafting, writing, punctuation and grammar skills (essential)
- Attention to detail
- Excellent research and analysis skills
- Social/digital media skills – digitally native
- Strong organisational abilities – independent self-starter, ability to balance a number competing priorities, with an appreciation of when and how to seek advice and guidance
- Able to understand and communicate complex issues quickly and succinctly
- Team player but equally comfortable working independently
- Strong interpersonal skills and solid business presentation skills
- Event management skills, showing attention to detail
- Strong general knowledge
- Independently managing multiple accounts, resourced appropriately
- Direct dealings with clients and reporting
- Perform supportive role as part of a wider MarComms team, mentor to junior staff
- Help to research, draft and cost up communication plans and proposals
- Media research, analysis, and distribution
- Attending progress meetings with senior members of the team
- Arrange meetings and events with various stakeholder groups
- Leading on the preparation of new business pitches, and driving new business
- Blogging on associated industry issues – a free thinker
- Assist junior staff and interns
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There is a two-stage interview process. In the first instance, applicants should send their CVs with a covering letter by email to Agency Manager – Sandra Foster – firstname.lastname@example.org.
More information about Innesco can be found here.More
Landsec celebrates five years of Trinity Leeds, a scheme which revitalized Leeds city centre and redefined retail experiences in the 21st century
Landsec’s Trinity Leeds turned five years old on 21st March. Following Landsec’s decision to regenerate two 1970s shopping arcades in Leeds city centre, Trinity opened in 2013 and has since set the benchmark for shopping centres in the 21st century. Having established a reputation as a launching pad for new retail innovations and leisure concepts, Trinity is now widely regarded as a natural destination of choice for international and domestic brands, outside of London.
Key firsts introduced by Landsec at Trinity Leeds include:
- Trinity Kitchen – a world first street food dining concept, which curates the very best culinary experiences from leading established and emerging restaurateurs. Trinity Kitchen consists of eight permanent restaurants supported by a rolling cast of five leading street food pop-ups. Currently Trinity Kitchen offers Indian street food from Pavs Dhaba, Malaysian cuisine from Dapur Malaysia, and a premium burger offering from Wagyu Lookin’ at?, a British street food awards’ finalist for the past three years.
- International restaurant group D&D launched its first two restaurant concepts outside of London at Trinity Leeds – Angelica and Crafthouse.
- Leading operators, such as jewellery and accessories retailer Lovisa and premium cinema brand, Everyman Cinemas, chose Trinity Leeds as their first locations in the north of England.
- Unique events brought forward by Trinity Leeds, include Wonder Weekend (an annual two-day spectacle which welcomes over 60 different experiences to the centre and provides one-time-only offers for visitors) and the UK’s biggest Gin and Vodka Festival. Hosted in Trinity Kitchen, the festival saw Trinity become the first UK shopping centre to launch its own brand of gin – ‘Ginity Leeds’.
Trinity Leeds continues to play an incredibly important role in the economic success of Leeds. Recent research by Landsec estimates that Trinity Leeds supports over 5,400 jobs and generates nearly £150m in economic output each year.
Key facts about Trinity Leeds include:
- At 788, 900 sq ft, Trinity Leeds is the size of 13 football pitches.
- 1,902 panes make up Trinity’s glass roof which is lit by more than 940 LEDS lights that can be controlled individually to create different moods and ambiences. The centre’s famous glass dome has the strength to support 10 elephants.
- 68 new brands (both UK and international) have come to Trinity Leeds since it opened.
Rob Jewell, Portfolio Director, Landsec said: “Trinity has had an incredible impact, both as an engine for local economic success and as a pace setter for innovation and evolution in the retail and leisure sector. We continue to work in collaboration with our brands to deliver the best in class experience for our customers and engage with shoppers to ensure their feedback drives continuous improvement. We’re very proud of the many thousands of jobs Trinity supports and the huge role it plays in boosting Leeds’ reputation as a city that is recognized globally as a fantastic place to live, work and visit. What’s more exciting is that we are by no means finished. We’re progressing a number of innovative initiatives at Trinity right now which will ensure that this magnificent scheme continues to set new records for many years to come.”
Hilary Benn, MP Leeds Central said: “Trinity has been a great addition to Leeds city centre. It set a new standard for design and is very popular with shoppers.”More
An important message
Following the recent negative publicity around networking events within the property industry, and in the run up to #MIPIM2018, we would like to encourage everyone attending these events to maintain their true professionalism at all times.
- Be considerate and respectful to all individuals regardless of their gender, race, religion, age, sexual orientation, disability, nationality or role
- Abstain from demeaning, discriminating or harassing anyone at the event through behavior or speech including at meetings, parties or on social media
- Be mindful of your surroundings
- Uphold and protect the valuable reputation of your business and its brand values
Looking ahead to MIPIM, let’s not allow a minority group of people to spoil what is a fantastic event. We should collaborate and work together to re-establish a truly professional and respectful culture.
Happy MIPIM 2018!More