Tesco eyes further F&F fashion stores

Tesco could open further standalone F&F pop-up stores in the UK if the London trial launched this week is a success, as part of its overarching efforts to boost non-food sales.

Tesco

The supermarket will assess the enthusiasm for the pop-up shop that launched in London this week to raise awareness of the F&F range to London shoppers and encourage Londoners to use its online clothing site.

Speaking to Marketing Week at the launch of the F&F pop-up shop in Covent Garden Emily Shamma, Tesco Clothing online director, says: “We never say never and things like this [pop-up] show that we’re testing what we can do with the brand. It wouldn’t be in the next couple of months but this is a trial and it helps us understand what we can do, and what customers think of product in different environments.”

“We’ve always been very proud of F&F as a brand but we’re recognising that we can do more with that. It’s a very international brand that’s successful in Europe and Asia so we want to harness our ability to stand as a global fashion brand.”

The supermarket currently has F&F stores in Poland. Czech Republic and Saudi Arabia.

Shamma adds that the pop-up, which only allows shoppers to buy products via iPads connected to its online platform or via smartphones and QR codes, shows how important online is to Tesco for future growth.

“We’ve realised we’re only just scratching the surface of what [online] can do for us. We’re trying to build awareness of the fact that we have a really great online platform across all our businesses including food, clothing and non-food,” she says.

The F&F pop-up also signals Tesco’s openness to testing “brave” new concepts as part of CEO Philip Clarke’s strategy to improve its UK business and make it more relevant for customers.

Shamma says: “You could spend weeks and months worrying whether it’s the right thing to do, but actually what you’ve got to do is go out, trial it, get customer feedback then you’ve got to decide that its not right for you now, or that if you tweak it you could do more with it, or its fantastic and you can roll it out further.

“That’s what trials are about. You’ve got to trial, you’ve got to be brave and do new things then customers will tell you whether they’re working or not.”

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