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All our team hold an active role in retail and digital communities as regular speakers and media commentators.

We are passionate about our industry and known for our bold points of views on all things digital and multichannel.


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November 2016: Retail Week
Analysis: Why etailers are moving to bricks and mortar

More and more pureplay retailers are betting on bricks-and-mortar to develop their business. But is traditional retail worth the trouble? Sophie Albizua, co-founder of multichannel consultancy eNova says making money may not be the primary objective for investing in stores. “These outlets will probably be profitable in and of themselves but I don’t think they will add massive amounts of money to the bottom line, for example. However, what I do think is they generate sales and profitability indirectly through brand awareness.”

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April 2016: CNN Money
11,000 jobs at risk as two UK retailers implode

BHS was “very slow to embrace digital transformation, but digital may not have saved them in any case as their product was no longer relevant,” noted Sophie Albizua, co-founder of the digital retail consultancy, eNova Partnership. Austin Reed, which was known for its shirts and suits, “suffered from competition from all sides” from shirt retailers, fashion brands and department stores, noted Albizua.
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February 2016: Reuters
Europe’s food retailers take bolder moves to fight Amazon

“Food retailers offering non-food is a necessary survival move,” said Sophie Albizua of retail consultancy eNova Partnership. “Margins in food are razor thin and margins in online food are almost non-existent so non-food is a way to have a slice of a more viable market.”
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y 2015: Luxury Daily
Frette revamps Web site to showcase brand lifestyle online

Italian linens brand Frette is furthering its digital strategy with the relaunch of its Web site that is designed to bring the in-store shopping experience to an online environment. Launching first in North American markets, Frette’s new site is fully responsive, allowing consumers to connect with its content and products across devices. This new digital flagship will enable the brand to reinforce its heritage and Italian brand image.
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January 2015: Retail Week
Analysis: Can partnerships solve the issues created by large store estates? 

Andy Morrey, co-founder of multichannel specialist eNova, which developed Argos’s click-and- collect concept, believes the deal will give Argos access to a weekly, large customer base and offer Sainsbury’s a much bigger general merchandise range that may attract new shoppers. “If it proves to be successful, it may pave the way for Argos to exploit its distribution network and reach in general merchandise. However it will need careful managing as many Sainsbury’s locations may take footfall away from Argos stores. It may even result in a redefinition of the Argos footprint on parts of the high street or out-of-town superstores,” he says.
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November 2014: IHR Magazine
Retailers to invest further in e-commerce

Retailers are investing in online grocery operations despite the cost in order to get more consumers to shop online. There is a lot of complexity surrounding selling food online due to important details like keeping the food fresh, frozen or warm. Another aspect is impulse buys that occur in the store that often don’t translate to online shopping. “They are trying to hook customers up to brands for their grocery shop and hope they will spend on non-food which is lower headache and higher margin, which will drive profitability,” says Sophie Albizua from retail consultancy eNova Partnership. “It is notoriously difficult to make money selling groceries online. The reason that people do it and need to do it have nothing to do with profit and nothing to do with groceries.”
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November 2014: The Guardian
Click-and-collect: a pick-me-up for the health of the high street

The death knell has been ringing for the high street ever since online shopping went mainstream. But rather than kill off the bricks and mortar store, e-commerce may yet be credited with its salvation, thanks to the inexorable rise of click-and-collect. Sophie Albizua, co-founder of The eNova Partnership, which advises retailers, believes that a better collect service enhances the brand as well as customer experience: “A bad experience comes back to hurt the retailer’s reputation and the sector overall.”
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November 2014: Retail Times
The eNova Partnership appoints Michael Wood as managing consultant

Michael joins eNova with 15 years’ experience within the fashion, footwear and sporting goods markets. His previous role was as head of website for Monsoon Accessorize, where he has spent the last four years defining and implementing its multi-channel and online international strategy including the re-platform. He also oversaw the launch of their six localised international sites, launching mobile optimised sites and working with the retail team to implement click and collect within the UK stores.
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November 2014: Direct Commerce
Michael Wood joins eNova

The eNova Partnership, a multichannel retail consultancy, has named Michael Wood as managing consultant. Wood was previously head of Website for Monsoon Accessorize, where he spent four years, and prior to that worked for Arcadia, Lipsy and Pentland Brands.
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October 2014: Retail Week
Digital receipts firm yReceipts raises funding from click-and-collect pioneer

yReceipts has received investment from backers including the former Argos ecommerce director credited with inventing click-and-collect. Former Argos executive Andy Morrey has invested in yReceipts in partnership with Sophie Albizua, who along with Morrey is co-founder of digital consultancy eNova Partnership. Morrey said: “We identified digital receipts as one of the trends set to grow exponentially in the coming years. We saw the simplicity of the yReceipts product, combined with its great management team, as a winning combination.”
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October 2014: Retail Insider
Still talking about click and collect?

It’s been 14 years since I had the most productive pint of my career, the one I was drinking with a colleague when we came up with “Click and Collect” as a name to define an idea that seemed mad to most observers, says Andy Morrey.Of course, the goalposts have moved. Whilst a click and collect trial used to make the headlines, nowadays unless it’s as innovative as collection points from schools or coffee shops, it barely makes anyone blink. Anyone, but the customer that is. Click and collect continues to be one of the single biggest drivers of growth for retailers, with digital leaders like Burberry and John Lewis routinely citing it as a driving force of year-end sales results. The reason for such resilience and growth? Convenience and price – in that order.
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September 2014: Retail Week
Analysis: Will click-and-collect be retailer’s next Christmas battleground?

Click-and-collect promises to be in huge demand this Christmas and retailers are working tirelessly to deliver a seamless fulfilment service. By 2017, click-and-collect is expected to hit 76% of sales as shoppers look for convenience, speed and value for money. It’s somewhat surprising, therefore, that just two-thirds of the UK’s top 50 retailers offer this service. Despite the immediate cost savings, however, click-and-collect is not a service to easily do well. Andy Morrey, co-founder of the e-Nova Partnership, was the head of ecommerce at Argos when the service was developed and launched. “If some retailers did a proper analysis of their click-and-collect, they would be horrified to see they are losing money,” he says. “Click-and-collect is a great service, but if it’s not done right then you can reduce the overall value for your customers.”
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July 2014: Retail Times
The eNova Partnership hires Gavin Williams from Harvey Nichols

The eNova Partnership, a leading multi-channel retail specialist, has announced the hire of Gavin Williams as managing consultant. Gavin joins eNova with over 15 years’ experience in e-commerce and digital marketing having worked at leading brands including Liberty, The Wine Society, McArthurGlen, Tesco, Dairy Crest, Penhaligon’s and L’Artisan Parfumeur.

Gavin said: “Having spent my career advising companies on their multichannel strategies it is great to be joining a team of other seasoned retail professionals to work on new exciting projects. The eNova Partnership continues to grow and bring on new clients, I am excited for the future of retail and the opportunities technology brings.”
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July 2014: Reuters
Retailers swallow online food cost to lock in shoppers

Big retailers are taking a calculated hit to margins to invest in online grocery operations, in the hope they can persuade consumers to add more profitable items like clothes and computers to their orders of fruit and vegetables. “They are trying to hook customers up to brands for their grocery shop and hope they will spend on non-food which is lower headache and higher margin, which will drive profitability,” said Sophie Albizua of retail consultancy eNova Partnership.
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July 2014: Retail Week
Five solutions to value retailers’ ecommerce challenge

Retailers are cashing in on the ecommerce boom but customer appetite for online retail creates a dilemma for value players. Retail Week spoke to eNova Partnership co-founder Sophie Albizua about the solutions available to discounters that will allow them to capitalise on the lucrative ecommerce market.

1) Minimum order value If minimum order values have to be introduced it is best to do it in a subtle way that encourages customers to buy through initiatives such as special offers. It can be better to accept to lose money on the 5% of orders that are below the breakeven order value, rather than build a message around a minimum basket size that might put off customers.
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May 2014: Retail Week
Analysis: Harnessing digital talent in a multichannel era

Training and retaining first-class ecommerce employees is one of the biggest challenges retailers face in today’s multichannel marketplace.

The rise of multichannel has introduced new forms of expertise: social media managers, copywriters, digital marketing managers, digital merchandisers, all the way to head of multichannel. The list of new titles is long,” explains Sophie Albizua, co-founder of eNova Partnership.
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May 2014: Unquote
E-commerce steps into the unknown with Zalando IPO

The rise of venture capital-backed Zalando, which initially began trading as an online shoe retailer before branching out into clothing and lifestyle products, has proven that e-commerce is a force to be reckoned with in the DACH region.

Infrastructure to support e-commerce is as strong as appetite for the segment in the DACH market, yet onlookers would be forgiven for thinking the market is somewhat static compared to the UK. Perhaps Zalando will blaze a trail once more. “[The upcoming Zalando IPO] may help move the market forward. Judging by the amount of interest that anything with a dotcom behind it is generating at the moment, I wouldn’t be surprised,” says Sophie Albizua
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May 2014: Lingerie Insight
Ann Summers launches Click & Collect Service

Ann Summers has launched a free Click & Collect service as part of a strategic plan to extend it multichannel offering. The retailer has been working with The eNova Partnership to build and develop its plans to extend its multichannel offering.

Laura Wynch, senior multichannel consultant at the firm said “it has been an exciting process helping Ann Summers realise their multichannel potential. Improving their service proposition through the introduction of Click & Collect, combined with their strong brand and unique product offer, will help them cement their position as leaders within their market.”
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May 2014: Drapers
Ann Summers launches Click & Collect

Lingerie retailer Ann Summers has launched a click-and-collect service as part of a wider move to increase its multichannel presence, and has been working with multichannel consultancy eNova Partnership to join up its retail and online strategies.

Ann Summers Multichannel director Andy McWilliams said “We know that the customers’ expectations are ever changing and the ways in which they make purchases is constantly evolving so want to ensure that we provide them with the services to fulfil their needs”
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May 2014: Reuters
E-commerce edge helps British retailers expand abroad

Marks & Spencer Plc is making a new push to expand abroad, hoping e-commerce will give Britain’s biggest clothing retailer a better chance to succeed than earlier attempts to enter new markets. It is one of several retailers that are using expertise developed in the UK’s fast-growing e-commerce market to expand overseas.

Sophie Albizua, co-founder of retail consultancy eNova Partnership, cautions that e-commerce does not mean that expanding abroad has suddenly become risk-free. She notes that ASOS, which already makes almost two-thirds of sales overseas, is still far more profitable in Britain than abroad if the costs of the head office are taken into account. “You should be careful with the myth that international expansion online is easier than store expansion,” Albizua said, noting it is costly to create brand awareness online in new markets, especially without the physical presence of stores.
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April 2014: The Times
Website helps shoppers who are by choice

It is a very modern problem, and now it has a very modern answer. The problem is you go online to order a set of wine glasses, some new pillows or a box of chocolates as a birthday gift and, instead of saving time by avoiding a trip to the shops, you are lost in a maze of options. Wading through endless choice on the internet has become an arduous task.

The answer comes in the form of websites that do the choosing for you. Sophie Albizua, co-founder of the consultancy eNova, says that online shopping has gone full-circle. “The internet has revolutionised how people shop by providing infinite access to an endless aisle of products and consumers are now gravitating towards solutions that help them to make a choice.”
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April 2014: Reuters
Retailers push into crowded mobile payment market

Big retailers are muscling in on the likes of Visa, MasterCard and Google in a fiercely competitive and growing mobile payment market that promises to cut transaction costs and increase customer loyalty.

Sophie Albizua, co-founder of UK-based retail consultancy eNova Partnership, said her clients were ready to invest in overhauling outdated till systems to enable mobile payments. “People spent the last five to 10 years fine-tuning their websites. Now they have time to focus on something else.”
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March 2014: Reuters
e-Commerce revolutions drives European retail IPO rush

European retailers are flocking to list in 2014 but traditional high-street chains are notable by their absence, replaced instead by the online, discount and convenience players that are shaking up shopping. However, some observers urge caution given lofty valuations for e-commerce, particularly as established chains fight back with their own online sales, leveraging store networks to provide more flexible delivery options than pure players.

“People forget it is difficult to make money selling online,” said Sophie Albizua, a former investment banker who co-founded eNova Partnership, a consultancy that advises traditional retailers on e-commerce. “Just like in the early 2000s, you have to wonder if it is sound investment if you can’t make money out of it,” she said, referring to the bursting of a bubble in listed Internet companies that ultimately failed to turn a profit.
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January 2014: CNN Money
Burberry shares pop after strong quarter

Shares in Burberry surged by as much as 7% in London on Wednesday after the luxury retailer reported strong sales over the holiday season.

Sophie Albizua, co-founder of the e-commerce consultancy eNova, called the quarterly report “excellent.” Albizua said Burberry’s click-and-collect offering, which allows customers to buy items online and collect them in-store, probably helped drive sales in the quarter.
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December 2013: Frontier Magazine
Fashion Fast Lane

The multiplicity of fashion and accessory brands entering travel retail begs some interesting questions; how are they developing their respective merchandising offers and what effect could this have on their end-to-end supply management chains?

Emphasising two key strands of the customer purchase journey in the airport – premeditated and planned – Sophie Albizua (co-founder of multichannel practitioner and consultancy the eNova partnership) points to the importance of catching the potential customer early before they enter the airport and once arrived, using the power of digital screens, tablet and mobile technologies to enhance the experience, enabling them to reserve items in-store for collection or arrange delivery to the terminal.
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November 2013: The Times
Asda ready to let the train take the strain

Asda expands their grocery click & collect to allow shoppers to order goods in the morning and collect them from railway station car parks at the end of the day as the race to open up spaces outside stores to click and collect gathers pace.

Sophie Albizua, the co-founder and managing director of eNova, said that supermarkets were chasing market share at the expense of profit and that it was “dangerous” to ask customers to pay for a click and collect service. “It goes against established wisdom in click and collect best practices because customers don’t typically expect to pay when they go to a specific location,” she said.
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October 2013: Financial Times
Hunt for the next Amazon draws fund managers

As online retail giants eBay, Amazon and Asos jockey for market share, fund managers are waiting in the wings to try and spot the next big thing in online spending. Memories of the 2001 dotcom bubble have been erased, they say.

Sophie Albizua, co-founder of eNova, a retail consultancy, dismisses the idea that the surging share price of many online retail brands signals another dotcom bubble. “Ecommerce is the only bright spot on the retail horizon, so there is a bit of momentum and hype there,” she says. “But I would never say we are in a similar situation to the early tech bubble because the fundamentals have changed.”
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October 2013: Essential Retail
New tech systems at heart of Home Retail turnaround

Home Retail Group’s Argos and Homebase are investing in technology to improve customer experiences and ensure they are fit for purpose in the 21st century retail world.

Andy Morrey, co-founder of the eNova Partnership consultancy former head of eCommerce at Argos and the man who is widely perceived to be the inventor of the click & collect format while at the company, says that the retailer is currently making another digital push after being well- positioned at the onset of eCommerce.
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October 2013: Retail Week
Argos is becoming the retailer to watch in multichannel

Argos is shaking off its outdated reputation and is fast regaining its status as the company to watch in multichannel.

Andy Morrey, partner at eNova partnerships says “The recent raft of new hires are interesting in that they revolve around business transformation and bring IT and IS at the centre of the organisation when they used to be a support department”.
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October 2013: Airport World
Thinking outside the box

Adopting a multi-channel approach to airport retailing will help concessioners maximise sales revenues in the years ahead, write Andy Morrey and Sophie Albizua.
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September 2013: Retail Week
Have Argos and eBay guaranteed the future of high street stores?

Whilst other retailers are attempting to slim down their estate, has Argos has turned what many view as a risk into an opportunity with its eBay tie-up?

eNova Partnership partner Andy Morrey […] warns that it’s too early to herald a new dawn for the retail store and raises a question mark over the profitability of Argos and eBay’s tie-up. “There are three retailers [including the merchant] in the value chain trying to make margin. I can’t imagine the normal benefit of additional footfall driving sales in Argos’ case.”
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September 2013: The Times
The Concept that Clicked

It was over a pint 13 years ago that Click & Collect was coined. Andy Morrey, the head of eCommerce for Argos had persuaded his bosses that allowing customers to reserve items online for in-store pick was a no brainer.
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September 2013: The Times
Scramble for new trends puts Asos in the pink

In a performance that astonished brokers, and put ASOS on an even stronger footing with a 47 per cent leap in fourth quarter sales, total retail sales for the three months to August 31 soared to £207.9 million.

Sophie Albizua, the co-founder of eCommerce consultancy The eNova Partnership, says that “ASOS’ best asset is its courage. Its management have thrown away the retail rulebook to gain market share and customer following.”
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July 2013: Internet Retailing
All Change for Omnichannel

Forward-thinking retailers are doing at no less than transforming their businesses to meet the demands of omnichannel. Chloe Rigby how others can set about following their lead.

These companies are all responding to a world, says Sophie Albizua, co-founder of multi-channel consultancy the eNova Partnership, in which some 60-70 per cent of retail transactions now start online, even if only 10 per cent are ultimately completed over the internet.
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July 2013: Retail Week
Comment: House of Fraser move throws down delivery gauntlet

House of Fraser has just had another shot at the online delivery race with its “next evening delivery” solution. The House of Fraser solution will appeal to the working population and to single dwellers, although not all will view the 6pm start-time of the delivery slot as convenient. It is one of many delivery options being developed by retailers fighting for ultimate multichannel convenience, but is more interesting in the context of the broader multichannel delivery offering of House of Fraser than as a solution itself.
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July 2013: PE News
The high street debate will impact on private equity

Retail has changed almost beyond recognition over the past 5 years, and as a consequence, so have retail private equity deals.The new retail order doesn’t reduce the attractiveness of retail private equity deals; it enhances it, even though the levers for success have switched as dramatically as the industry itself.
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June 2013: Drapers
Primark’s web launch with Asos is a ‘win-win’

Primark’s decision to make its online retail debut by launching on Asos’s website has been applauded, with industry figures hailing the move as a winner for both companies.
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May 2013: Retail Week
Royal Mail is launching a click and collect service at its branches for online retailers

The Royal Mail is to launch a click-and-collect service at its branches aimed at online retailers and their customers.

However, Sophie Albizua, co-founder of multichannel consultancy the eNova Partnership was sceptical about the service. She said: “The click-and-collect service for online retailers already has a name, it’s called The Post Office! However, whoever has queued on a Saturday morning to get a parcel knows that unless the service proposition and opening hours dramatically improve, there is little change to the existing proposition.

Customers choose click and collect for its convenience, and are pretty demanding when it comes to service – click-and-collect booths need to be clearly visible, with a maximum waiting time of five minutes, and open late and weekends.”
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March 2013: The Economist
Mixing Bricks with Clicks

Some online retailers are venturing onto the high street.

Pure online retailers do not pay rent but their variable costs eat up much of that advantage, says Sophie Albizua of eNova Partnership, a consultancy. Without storefronts to lure in customers they shell out to buy ads linked to Google search results. Delivery, especially of bulky goods, is a headache. Couriers show up at empty houses, and fees often fail to cover the full cost. Shoppers return a quarter or more of clothing they buy, another big expense.

All this looks easier if you have real shops. With “click and collect” customers can order with, say, a smartphone but pick up the item at a convenient outlet. Often, they linger to shop more. Britons pick up something extra about 40% of the time, says Ms Albizua.
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January 2013: The Daily Telegraph
Click and Collect: The new way to go shopping

The internet retail revolution has taken a surprising turn – in which independent store owners can play a happy and prosperous role.

Sophie Albizua, co-founder of eNova Partnership, which advises retailers, said: “Suddenly, the consumers can be in a tiny market town, but have access to the complete range from their favourite clothes shops or department stores at the end of their road.”
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January 2013: Financial News
Buyout firms adjust to the click-and-collect-age

UK retailers, still struggling with the old high-street-heavy model, are forcing the buyout market to adopt new approaches.

“House of Fraser is having a whole re-think of its physical and online multichannel offerings, and this is at the core of the fundamental shift that is happening in the retail market and therefore in private equity investments in the space,” Albizua said.
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January 2013: Private Equity News
Firms Survey New Retail Landscape

Shopping is still attractive for investors but they are steering clear of the high street. U.K. retailers, still struggling with the old high street-heavy model, are forcing the buyout market to adapt to new approaches.Read the full article (opens in new window) >

January 2013: Financial Times
How to unite the physical and digital worlds in luxury retailing

While bricks and mortar boutiques and emphasis on human contact would seem to be the perfect antidote to too much time spent online, digital experiences in luxury shops are starting to play an increasingly important role.

Ms Wynch [consultant at the eNova a partnership] says: “iPad assisted in-store ordering has resurrected the customer/adviser relationship.”
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November 2012: Retail Gazette
Guest Comment: The changing role of stores

For the past few years, UK retail has remained in a state of flux as its landscape continues to alter. Whilst the economic downturn has partially been responsible for such changes, the traditional retail model is undergoing a fundamental shift towards a more ‘customer centric’ model, focussed around the consumer’s multichannel shopping habits.
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September 2012: The Observer
Report on M&S new Multichannel concept store

As online shopping grows, the high street retailer is testing a ‘multichannel’ approach, using touchscreens and Wi-Fi at a massive new concept store.

“Andy Morrey, M&S’s first e-commerce director, who has since founded retail consultancy eNova, says the high street is responding to consumer behaviour, not the other way around”
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July 2012: Private Equity International
On The Record: Sophie Albizua, The eNova Partnership

Sophie Albizua used to be a retail specialist at UK mid-market firm HgCapital. She now runs her own firm advising retail sector clients (and their private equity owners) on how to generate more value from multichannel strategies.
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July 2012: Private Equity News
Guest Comment: A New Age for Retail Private Equity Deals

Retail has brought the buyout industry some of its biggest successes (Pets at Home, Poundland) and failures (Peacocks, La Senza). The recipe used is simple: use retail’s natural operational gearing, on top of a financially geared structure, and as long as there was growth, the returns could get exponential.
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June 2012: eMarketer
“In store pickup” report

In-store pickup services are highly popular with online consumers because they combine the convenience of ecommerce with the pleasure of shopping in stores. Retailers such as Wal-Mart, Best Buy and Argos (UK) report that 40% or more of their online orders are picked up in-store. Yet many retailers have generally been slow to offer such services because they are dif!cult and costly to implement.
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November 2011: Internet Retailing
The rise and rise of Click and Collect

It is official: Click & Collect has made it to the forefront of the retail scene. No longer an optional extra to boost eCommerce growth, it is finally taking the pivotal role it deserves in retailers’ strategy, with the likes of New Look announcing it will be “the biggest driver of sales within the next three years”.
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May 2011: Internet Retailing
Click and Collect 10 years on

We are in 2011 and Argos is still winning “Multi-Channel Retailer of the Year” Awards ten years after it launched the first Click and Collect service in the UK. Let’s take this anniversary as an opportunity to review the state of one of the most successful retail inventions of the 21st century’s first decade. No need to speak to the experts – a trip to one of Sainsbury’s trial Click and Collect stores with “Collect in Store” placarded on giant banners, leaflets and staff T-shirts seems enough to suggest that the concept that seemed so revolutionary in the early 2000s has finally become mainstream.
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June 2010, Fashionista at Law
From Screen to Door to Screen to Store

The fact that home delivery can be a barrier to some consumers is no news and solutions such as physical drop boxes or collection store networks have been talked about for years. But no one has taken the click to brick plunge yet in any meaningful way. This might be the catalyst.
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