THE WHAT? The Chalhoub Group is said to be launching three new e-commerce sites this year as it ‘reassesses’ its bricks and mortar strategy, according to a report by Arabian Business.
THE DETAILS The move by the Middle Eastern luxury distributor follows the opening of 12 e-commerce websites for its brands in the Middle East, including Level Shoes, Sephora Middle East and L’Occitane.
It has not confirmed what brands would be showcased on the new websites.
Speaking to Arabian Business, CEO Patrick Chalhoub said, “In the coming 3 months, we will have two or three major sites which we will be opening. I will not unveil them because we will unveil them in due course, but you will be quite astonished over some of the brands that are coming online. So we’re coming online but also reassessing our brick and mortar, closing some stores or reinvesting.”
THE WHY? The move follows a slew of store closures for the company last year, with Chalhoub said to be focused on investment in tech-driven stores in new spaces such as community malls.
Looking to focus on ‘less but better’ footfall, Chalhoub continued, “Bad retail is dead so either we invest in what we have, or we better close it. There is no more space for mediocracy… there are new malls coming, new community areas… there is more retail space available in good locations.
“So today stores that are losing money and where we’re not seeing traction for the customer, we prefer to really shut them down and where we feel our customer in a community or specific space is looking for our brands and products and we could give experience, human touch, then we are able to do so… it’s not brick and mortar retail which is dead, what is dead is bad retail.”