DIY-chains of Netherlands - Jos de Vries The Retail Company study trip

From 26 to 29 October 2009 Russian retailers were on a business seminar to DIY-chains of the Netherlands.
Business tour was organized by design-bureau Jos de Vries The Retail Company. During the trip we talked with leading DIY representatives and visited the shops. Here we would like to share our observations with you.

About the Dutch DIY market
Market of DIY shops in the Netherlands is considered to be one of the most competitive in Europe. Annual turnover of the country's DIY market is about 10 billion Euros. There more than 450 only chain supermarkets and hypermarkets. And this is on the area slightly larger than the Moscow region and with the population of 17 million people. The situation makes the chains constantly monitor the actions of competitors and to change accordingly. However the retailers who communicated with us say that lately the chains are looking more at each other and not on the market. And difference between brands and formats, as well as between the prices becomes smaller. During the trip we saw these approaches at work.
There are a few general trends: the Dutch DIY chains have a clear organizational structure and logistics. Small, in comparison with Russia range, up to 20,000 items. On the shelves are just the better selling positions. Minimal storage space - to store goods is too expensive, orders are done automatically and delivered with 98% accuracy.

Key players in the market:
Intergamma (Gamma chain and Karwei) 35%
Maxeda (Praxis chain and Formido) 28%
DGN (Multimate chain, Doehand, Hubo) 10%
Hornbach 5%
Other shops - 22%

No doubt that the chains will continue to change. The crisis clearly affects the situation. Experts estimated reduction in turnover by 10%. Some market players adjust the range trying to please the customer - Bicycles and TV`s were not previously included in the assortment. From meetings with managers, we realized that today it is still the price buyers are looking at. And then the best one wins!

We visited several stores of Karwei chain. The shop (see the photos) submitted by an area of 4400 sq. meters (including storage), 40 employees, average bill is 40 euro and about 2,200 customers a week.
Several years ago, the chain has made its main assortment decorative rather than constructive. Today, about 50% of the assortment is designed for decoration and home furnishing. The chain is counting on female shoppers and varies from the standard (gray shelves, quiet shades in design) to design - the black heads of racks for promotional items, bright big names of departments, a clear visualization of goods and merchandising.

The chain has 138 DIY stores, some of them have a garden center (the objects were bought from a German Marktkauf). We visited several sites including the best in the country in terms of turnover store area of 12,000 sq. + 4.000 meters square. meters garden center. In the year store serves 500,000 customers, average bill is 35 euro. Praxis differs from the other players because it has no own DC, all products come from suppliers, 4 stock employees receive 30 trucks. The store employs 150 staff, a 100 of them have full-time contract. In the sales area chain earns 1,600 euro a square meters in the garden center - 800 euro.

Gamma chain making emphasis on the sale of building materials, has opened 158 stores in the Netherlands and Belgium. We visited several sites, including the standard shop Gamma, near the city of Utrecht - the fourth largest city in the Netherlands. In the suburbs of Utrecht before the crisis very extensive building was carried out, which is now according to the prognosis for the next three years will be reduced. Shop area is 5600 square meters. It receives 425 customers a day, average bill is 47 euro. Turn of the shop assortment 2 weeks, the margin is 32%.

All the participants of a business tour liked this shop with a small sells area as well as its owner. Chain Hubo operates 200 stores and the work is built on the principle of co-operative union. The central organization makes purchases for the chain and receives the bonus on volume. The chain has dozens of shops, but also private entrepreneurs. They buy the main range from the parent organization and pay 4000 euro per year as a contribution. THE shop we visited has two floors, 800 square meters and is located in a small village, with 15,000 inhabitance. On the first floor of the entire range of Hubo - hardware, spare parts for tools, paint, corners, etc. It is believed that if the master requires a pair of screws Hubo is ideal store for him. Competitors do not sell screws individually. On the second floor the owner arranged its range and services - kitchens, furniture, built-in wardrobes and promotion services for installation, painting, etc. In addition to trading activities, the owner of the shop provides services for painting, maintenance and repair of buildings, cutting wood, and has established links with various specialists to repair.

German chain Hornbach - DIY-the only foreign player in the Netherlands. Now in the country 9 hypermarkets are working. Thanks to the advertising, the buyers got the impression that this is the cheapest DIY shop. In practice this is not always the case. Nevertheless, during our visit there were a lot of buyers.
Hornbach is closest to Russia's DIY shops concept - a wide range 30-40.000 articles, with a high-rise storage racks of commodity stocks. There are several unique features. Trade Hall is divided into 3 parts: immediately after the entrance to the center - a decorative range of products, the right side of the shop - range of construction (and, if a customer buys a large batch or special large door it will be delivered on the special truck to his car to the parking). Left to the building an open garden center is adjusted.

According to our observations, today more than ever the client is focused on price when choosing store. Dutch DIY market is highly saturated with stores. Just in a radius of 5-6 km a buyer finds a competing store, if it is something he disliked in the first. So things are going better for chains that offer an interesting variety and good price.

Irina Bolotova
Jos de Vries The Retail Company

Luca FloorFashion store concept focusing on instore communation

In coorporation with Retail Bouw Management Jos de Vries The Retail Company has designed and developed the first pilot store of Luca Floor Fashion (part of Tegelgroep Nederland). Luca Floor Fashion is the place when you are looking for the latest trends and specials on floors. It has become a store where you can find everything on floors, you can experience, judge and purchase of floors. A true shopping experience: fashionable floors of only sustainable and honoust materials, like ceramic, nature stone of wood, available in many types, sizes and colours. Everything shown from an easy accesible concept. You won´t see bath rooms and kitchens but only special floors.

The Luca FloorFashion store opened her doors last April. The company has choosen for a special image, using instore communication as styling and communication media.
The special instore graphice of the store can be seen directly entering the store (located at the Van Slingelandtstraat in Amsterdam). Above the reception, also the cash collection point, you can see on of the new screens of LG. This LCD screen shows movies related to the brand of Luca Floorfashion.
The heart of the store exists of a catwalk. At the end of the catwalk there is a big projection screen where many different applications can be seen. There are two additional screens inside the store. One of the screens is placed near floor heating, here it shows how the system works. The other screen is placed in the special “creation zone”. Juliëtte Renard, Store Manager of Luca Floorfashion, explains the idea of the special zone “Clients consider it to be difficult to obtain an image of how the floor looks like in their house. We have more than four hundres different tiles in this store and these are all collected in the computer. In the creation zone the clients can look in an interactive manner how the desired floor looks like in their house.

French retailer Casino opens hypermarket focusing on female clients

French supermarket and hypermarket chain Casino has opened a new hypermarket under the brand name Géant Casino. This new hypermarket is located in the french city of Montpellier. With the design of the hypermarket the retailer is being focused on the wishes and demands of the female customers. The hypermarket has a total surface of 12.000m2 and with the new format the retailer has choosen for a new strategy of the store format. The store opened is hypermarket 115 of the retailer chain.

The new store concept has a different zone for private brands fresh produce. Furthermore there is a female focus on the textile- , household and leisure department, focusing on the price-quality level. The design of the hypermarket focuses on these fresh produce and the non-food products are grouped based on “moments of use”.

Colruyt opens first DreamLand-store in France

Colruyt opened the 12th of September its first DreamLand store in France. The new store is located in Leers, which is near the Belgian border, close to Roubaix.
The DreamLand store in France is store number 30 of this chain. DreamLand is a daughter of the Colruyt Group. In 1978 this company started as toys store, the DreamLand formula nowadays is a leisure shop concept for the younger and older consumer.

A store concept like DreamLand is a totally new concept for France. In France there are toys stores and hypermarkets, but almost nothing in between. DreamLand has already plans to opens its second store in France, in Douai.

Colruyt is already active in France for several years, with supermarkets and as cash&carry. The chain is known for its low pricing, flat organisation structure and a down to earth mentality, all ingredients for the success of the Colruyt formula.

Jos de Vries The Retail Company developed the current store concept together with DreamLand. The information described below concerns the first store and further roll-out of this store concept. The pictures are from the first renovated store with the new store concept in Belgium.

Together with Dreamland points that needed to be improved had been described, a different routing had to be optimalized with strong focus points and clear entrances.
The check-out zone has been separated from the entrance zone, the client can easily enter the store, also at busy days.

At the DreamBaby-shop the assortiment was beter grouped to easen the search of the consumers. Next to the improvement of the routing and presentation, it was also important to make the new DreamLand identity more recognizable at the facade and inside the store. Together with the client we checked every part of the store. Our client was very realistic about the status and the improvements that needed to take place, a concrete and practical way of working of DreamLand.

here to go back to the homepage of Jos de Vries The Retail Company.

Block electrostore new store concept: optimalization of lay-out,routing and instore-graphics

Block Electrostore is one of the biggest chains of specialized electrostores in The Netherlands and has stores in the whole Randstad. Block is a family owned- company, founded in 1955. The company has 28 stores in 2009 and is managed by the five sons of the founder. Back in 1990 the company developed a store concept focusing on the floor and the ceiling with a light plan. The store concept was succesfull for a longer period, but the company was in need of a new store concept. The store in Hilversum needed an optimalization of the lay-out, routing and instore-graphics. Jos de Vries The Retail Company was asked to develop that.

Entering the new store in Hilversum you can directly see the brand wall, placed above the shelve presentations. The brand wall is a white strip with grey texts and lighted with coloured lights. The clients are better able to find their preferred department, the white goods department is indicated with blue light (refrigerators, washing machines, dryers) and using orange colour the client can see the brown goods department (tv´s, audio and household equipment).

To increase the traceability of the products at the (low) gondolas in the store for some products, sub-groups, indications have been made. This accounts for example for navigation articles, car radios and mobile dvd players. These products are presented next to each other.

To seduce the clients to visit the whole store there are installed “screen bulletins”, these “screen bulletins” (foreseen of LED lighting) shows texts and brand names. By placing these screen bulletins there is more movement and dynamics in the store.

Working together with Jos de Vries The Retail Company resulted into the contact with Retail Bouw Management. A retail design agency and a retail building management company under one roof made the development of the new concept clarifying. //

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Jos de Vries The Retail Company has been rewarded for the results they have obtained in the Russian Market, by winning the RusPrix Award. The RusPrix Award is a prestigious award to stimulate the trade- and socialcultural relationship between The Netherlands and Russia. Jos de Vries The Retail Company, for over 8 years present at the Russian market, is elected as best performing Dutch Small Business company at the Russian market.

De Groene Weg: greenest shop of The Netherlands

The biological chain of butchers De Groene Weg (The Green Road) have been elected as the Greenest Store of 2009 by the Magazine “Green.2”. The winners are companies that do something back for the environment and that are making efforts to reduce the effects on the environment. They look at People, Profit and Planet. The chain makes great effort, internally and externally with their Social Responsability Policy and there Sustainable way of doing business. Jos de Vries The Retail Company has been responsable for the development of the new store concept of The Groene Weg.

Opening smallest candy store of Jamin in The Netherlands

The smallest candy store of The Netherlands "opened" its doors. This store is based in the famous miniature city of Madudoram (The Hague). The well-known chain Jamin, Dutch biggest candy store chain with over 125 years of ago, is developing rapidly. Next to this mini-store, developed by Dutch retail specialist Jos de Vries The Retail Company, the chain is increasing throughout The Netherlands. At this moment the chain has 142 stores and within 5 to 7 years they want to expand to 150 stores.

Retail Bouw Management, part of Jos de Vries The Retail Company Group, is responsable for the construction of these new stores.

Aquié (Grupo Cuevas) finalist World Retail Awards

The Spanish formula Aquié became finalist in last World Retail Awards, in the category “innovative retail concepts”.

The Spanish formula Aquié has been developed by Jos de Vries The Retail Company and is based on a new, modern design, the use of new technologies and a well-balanced assortment of healthy groceries. Everything seen based on Green Retailing. This central point in the company of Jos de Vries The Retail Company has been adapted in this concept by only supplying bio-recycable bags and furniture and lightning (in combination with Microlight and Smeva) selected on the environmental advantages because of the low consumption of energy.

Next to these innovative aspects of Green Retailing the clients can choose from a selected assortment of daily varying fresh and healthy menus (to prepare or prepacked). These products are tested and prepared by the university of Vigo to create an ecological and healthy product assortment.

This fifth generation supermarket is next to the success of being nominated for the World Retail Awards very succesfull with this new innovative concept. They are that succesfull that they opened their 2nd store already (in A Porriño, Galicia). The first supermarket can welcome over 1.250 visitors on a daily base and the turn-over is over 29% higher than the other stores of the Grupo Cuevas.

Processes of creating a new store concept

In the last phase of the process of creating a store concept, we make use of a toolbox. This practical toolbox includes instruments required to deliver a complete and discerning shop interior. The toolbox prevents decisions regarding the image of the store from being made at random. These must always be rooted in the framework of the concept.

The instruments in the toolbox are:

Store design

Visual merchandising
Instore graphics


For more information about using the toolbox, we refer to the book ‘The store manual’, which can be ordered from this website.

Renewed New York Pizza-concept opens doors at Amsterdam Central Station

Last week New York Pizza opened at Amsterdam Central Station its “Next Generation” retail concept. Within this renewed concept – developed by Jos de Vries The Retail Company – the clients can enjoy how the pizza professionals prepare their desired combination of products. This experience of freshness with the smell of the oven – centrally placed in the hart of the store – plays an important role in the new store concept. The “Personal Pizza” is prepared in a short time of period, with for the clients the ability the see the whole process. Therefore, next to the open kitchen, there is a trendy lounge area to see the preparation process.

The menu is modular and offers, next to the Personal Pizzas, ook Personal Pasta´s & Piadina´s and salads. All the products are tailor-made, just as the client wants to enjoy their product.

The new concept is realized by RBM Retail Bouw Management

The first results are very positive with an increase in turn-over of over 25%

The ten golden rules of the ideal store Lay-out

The ten golden rules of the Lay out
This chapter describes the ten golden rules of the layout design. These rules will provide you with an overview of the main basic requirements for designing a customer-oriented store lay-out.

Rule 1 - Layout = Positioning
A layout is an important positioning tool. You can use the layout to convey to your customers whether your store is a discounter or a chic design boutique. The manner in which you guide your customers in the commercial market is decisive as regards the position you wish to adopt in the overall market.

Customers associate an obligatory guided tour through the store with a discount formula. Therefore this gives you the opportunity to determine how your customers will perceive your store. The very opposite of this formula is an open layout presentation that gives the customer a great deal of freedom of movement. He or she can go anywhere Customers usually associate this layout presentation type with a rather more upmarket shop.

You should also take a clear position in comparison to your competitors and position yourself in the market in a distinctive way. Your layout will not only contribute to clear positioning, but can also serve to emphasise distinction.

Rule 2 - The first impression
The following should be kept in mind as it follows naturally from the idea of the layout as a positioning tool: ‘You never get a second chance to make a first impression’. It is important to give careful consideration to the store's entrance, because it will influence the customer's image of the store.

A large entrance evokes in the customer the notion of an upmarket shopping experience. You will achieve the opposite if you create a small and narrow store entrance, which the customer will associate with a discounter.
Rule 3 - A familiar route
When designing a layout, it is of crucial importance to take into account, at an early stage, the way in which customers will be led through the store. A ‘slightly compulsory tour’ is recommended. You should give the customer the feeling that the route he has taken in the store was his own decision. On the other hand, from a commercial point of view, it is absolutely necessary to lead the customer along all the important departments of the store. Not just for the sake of turnover, but also for the sake of customer satisfaction. There is no greater source of annoyance for a customer than not being able to find the product he or she needs.
Rule 4 - The usefulness of the ‘Layout toolbox’
In principle, a layout should consist of several elements. A well-attuned and changing rhythm ensures not only that the customer feels at ease, but also that he or she takes this pleasant feeling home.

Lines of sight
Lines of sight always run along the aisle; the longer the aisle, the better the customers can see what is at the end of it.
Eye-catchers located at the end of the aisle are a highly effective communication tool; examples are: graphic elements, special product presentations or special offers.

Walk routes
To lead the customer through the store, it obviously makes sense to integrate the walk routes; the walk route will then not only lead the customer through the store, but also serves as a reference point.

Dedicated rooms
As early as in ancient times, certain rooms were dedicated to various events; it makes sense to allow for dedicated rooms for different commercial purposes when designing the layout, such as for instance displaying certain special offers.
Creating space in a layout design contributes to the maximum presentation of, for instance, special product groups. Space creates order for the customer and thus leads to a pleasant shopping experience. It is important not to arrange a room in such a way that it becomes small or too narrow, because this will have the opposite effect.

Rule 5 - Keeping the balance between customer and technology
Designing a customer-oriented layout on the one hand and integrating all the technical requirements on the other hand is often a veritable balancing act. Failure to achieve this balance almost always shows in a layout design. Technology-oriented layouts usually take less account of the customer. It is important that all the departments of the business – both sales and technical support – steer the same course. And though no eventual compromise will be reached, what will be achieved is the best solution for all parties involved.
Rule 6 - Layout is 2D, but you need to think 3D!
Any layout design requires that you plan in two dimensions, but a store is experienced in three dimensions. So pay sufficient attention to the height of the shelves, the arrangement of the rooms and the location of the products. Is it difficult for you to imagine a three-dimensional situation? Then try it with small three-dimensional sketches. At any rate, it is important that you are aware of the three-dimensional effects that the two-dimensional decisions can have.

Rule 7 – Arrangement of product ranges in accordance with the customer's wishes
Any arrangement of a product range should meet the logical and explicit need of the customer. Customers are creatures of habit. They do not appreciate having to walk through the store unnecessarily in order to find a particular product. Each industry has its own characteristics and there is not really one single recipe that applies to all industries when it comes to the most suitable
arrangement. To find the best solution, you could make use of the knowledge and experience acquired by other branch stores. Or draw inspiration from the solutions adopted by your competitors!

Rule 8 - Layout is never an isolated factor
It is important to note that layout is always linked to other (construction) elements of a store. For instance, lighting is an important part of a store formula. The lighting will need to be attuned to the layout at the same time as when other details are being planned. Furthermore, there are other factors that affect layout. You should always take into account matters such as location-specific conditions (parking facilities), the other window displays already in place or the height of the rooms available.

Rule 9 – From macro to micro
Initially you should approach a new idea for a store layout with the utmost caution. All too often too much attention is paid to details and this has a negative effect on the essential overall idea. To start with, you should draw up an inventory of the general arrangement of the space and each department's need for space. After that, you can fill in the details such as pillars or emergency exits.
Rule 10 – Location comes first, before the concept
Locations are rarely uniform. The customer base is usually as diverse as the constructional details. A store based on a franchise formula gives you the option of dhering to a strict standard or adjusting the individual store to the specific characteristics of the location. These adjustments should be given a higher priority than the formula. Of course, it is very important to adhere to and implement a formula in the best possible way.

But this is often done at the expense of turnover. Which is why it is advisable to adjust the standardised formulas to the location and not the other way around.
Good layout design is not a science. You cannot make prior predictions regarding the amount of time customers will spend in the store nor the rhythm of customer flow. Fortunately, concept design is still based on common sense and a feeling and passion for retail.

All the points of attention described in this chapter are intended as support. To avoid possible mistakes and to achieve your goal, beginners especially should use the ten golden rules as a guideline.
This article follows on the article about the importance and the purposes of a good store lay-out. To read this article click here. Both texts form part of the book the Store Manual written by Jos de Vries The Retail Company.

The Store Manual (2005)

Jos de Vries The Retail Company has been working his way through the marvels of the Retail world since twenty years. Since the Retail branch on its way to professionalism is developing and also scholarly interest was growing, there still wasn’t a manual.
Jos de Vries The Retail Company has made a definite change in bringing out “The Store Manual” a must for every store

You can order this manual for € 35,00 (excl. Postage and Package)

The store lay-out: the importance and purposes of a good store lay-out

A properly structured and intelligently developed layout is probably one of the most underrated characteristics of a successful store formula.

This chapter will provide you with a systematic presentation of ¡the layout. The layout will be discussed from all angles and specified in more detail on the basis of the ‘ten golden rules’.

The importance of good store layout
Why is good layout so important? Is it not sufficient to offer a well-adjusted product range at a good price in the right place? Surveys have shown that one of the most important criteria for customer satisfaction is the ease with which the customer finds his way in the store.
Besides, the customer expects to be led along the main departments of the store. Therefore a good layout is a matter of customer satisfaction.

Of course, there are also commercial factors that argue in favour of the importance of a good layout. A good layout provides you with the opportunity of influencing store turnover. The appropriate shelf layout, the arrangement of the product range or a well-thought out spot for special offers all have a direct effect on turnover. So a good layout may very well create a boom in a store's

Finally, of course, the layout also has an organisational component. Each store has its own best solution for logistics problems. This applies especially to stores with a fast turnover of goods, stores that sell products that are difficult to market or products that take up a large amount of space etc. Defining specific conditions is an absolute necessity for the sale of goods that require a certain (sales) ambiance. And, finally, it is important to keep both customers and sales employees satisfied.

Purposes of the store layout
A good store layout serves many purposes, such as for instance customer flow, the prevention of shoplifting and logistics. The main purposes are discussed in greater detail below.
1 Customer flow
One of the main purposes of the layout is undoubtedly to create smooth customer flow through the store. To achieve this, it is important to create the right balance between fast and smooth (customer) flow on the one hand and provision of space on the other. Creating smooth (customer) flow is necessary in stores that have a high frequency of customer visits. Well-organised routing and sufficiently wide aisles can achieve this.

The danger of too smooth a customer flow is the speed. If the customer is accustomed to walking through a store at a certain pace, it is important to slow down this speed deliberately, effectively and gradually. This can be achieved by means of certain ‘tools’. It does not need to involve a different layout of the available space. It can also be accomplished by a special product range or eyecatchers in the store.
A customer needs some time to decide to buy a product. The purchase of goods from particular product ranges is determined by ambiance. For instance, a customer does not want to be disturbed by other customers when a choice has to be made between two types of lingerie.

2. Prevention
The layout also has a preventive task. The more poorly organised a store, the more opportunities shoplifters have to take advantage of the unclear situation! When developing the layout, precautions can be taken that make it more difficult for shoplifters to steal goods. Examples of this are: not to install the shelves as a poorly organised maze, adjusting the height of the shelves or placing theft-sensitive goods within sight of sales employees.

These are just a few examples. At any rate, both preventive precautions and a deterrent policy can reduce the risk of a negative cash balance.
3. Logistics
You will also want to keep logistics under control. Studies show that the so-called 'final 50 yards' are the highest cost item of the logistics chain. This is where the turnover rate is highest and so are the proportionally increasing staffing costs.

A good layout cannot completely reduce these costs, but it can make them more controllable. Short supply routes, wide aisles where necessary and adjusting the warehouse build-up to the store are important factors that can result in an improvement of the cost structure.

4. Other functions
Naturally, a good layout has other purposes as well. In accordance with the principle that first impressions count, the layout can either attract customers or put them off. A layout can provide solutions or it can complicate matters. A logical product layout will help customers make a decision to purchase, whereas an illogical order creates confusion and dissatisfaction. Depending on the business type and the sales formula, there is an ever-growing need for increased flexibility.

Product ranges change more and more frequently and you want to be able to respond rapidly to seasonal changes. A good layout allows for this. Flexibility is key where the need for space, margin in the market and presentation are concerned.

Please continue to read the article on the golden rules of a good store lay-out.

Both articles form part of the book "The Store Manual" written by Jos de Vries The Retail Company.

The Store Manual

Jos de Vries The Retail Company has been working his way through the marvels of the Retail world since twenty years. Since the Retail branch on its way to professionalism is developing and also scholarly interest was growing, there still wasn’t a manual.
Jos de Vries The Retail Company has made a definite change in bringing out “The Store Manual” a must for every store

You can order this manual for € 35,00 (excl. Postage and Package)

Retail Studytrip New York with VME

In december 2009 DIE GRUPPE will visit New York City for a six days trend-tour. The trip is oganised in coorporation with the VME (United Furniture Purchasing Organisation) from Bielefeld, Germany and involves more than 30 members. The aim of this trip is to visit the most recent trends and developments in innovative retail concepts in New York City. Besides the interesting store concepts like ABC Carpet & Home, Ethan Allen and Food Emporium, the newest furniture stores in trendy Soho will be visited: the area where the New Yorkers find the interior designers for their trendy lofts, like Droog, Jonathan Adler, Moss, Design within Reach and many other trendsetting designers

Worth a visit
A lunch at Chelsea Market is an absolute must when visiting the Meatpacking District. The newly opened Highline Park is also more than worth a visit. An exiting windowshopping program completes the study trip to the Big Apple.

DIE GRUPPE, a new retail business network
DIE GRUPPE is a new company within Jos de Vries International Holding. The company is building a retail business network focusing on:
Study trips

The contacts, as a result of the more than 20 years of experience of Jos de Vries The Retail Company, will be grouped in this new, innovative network. DIE GRUPPE is designed after the example of the Dutch network platform FocusPlaza, which has over 300 members.

DIE GRUPPE is operating in German speaking countries and directed by Jos de Vries The Retail Company Germany, the Dortmund office. In 2010 the service package will be offered as a yearly support.

Besides DIE GRUPPE, Jos de Vries the Retail Company organises several workshops, seminars and study trips. These activities are based on actual themes, aiming to spot new trends and to put these to the test. The events often have an international character since the participants come from all over Europe.

Jos de Vries The Retail Company also organises made-to-measure workshops and study trips. If your business is interested in a specific theme or if you would like to study retail developments in a particular country, we will be pleased to make the appropriate arrangements to suit your needs.
For further information please contact Mr. Claus Wester 0049 – 231 94 199 087 or email:

We proudly present: More than 20 years of international retail experience

Program DIY-Study-trip (Russian)

Jos de Vries The Retail Company is organizing a DIY-Study trip to The Netherlands to see the latest trends and developments in the Dutch DIY-Sector.

Below you can find the presentation (Russian) and on this link you can find the presentation in English.

Jos de Vries The Retail Company organizes DIY-study trip The Netherlands

The Russian office of Jos de Vries The Retail Company organizes a study-trip to see the latest trends and developments in the Dutch Do-it-yourself market . There will be a lot of professionals of Russian retail participating but the language will be in English and other participants are more than welcome to join this study-trip.

The study-trip will take place between the 26th and 29th of October.

26 October
Arrival day

27 October
Briefing - Trends in creating concepts of DIY-stores. Best practises in European DIY-stores
The trendpresentation will be given by Nico de Jong - creative director Jos de Vries The Retail Company. Mr. de Jong has big work experience at INTERGAMMA B.V. At Jos de Vries The Retail Company he is the specialist, creating concepts and store fornulas for DIY in Europe and Russia.

Store visits:
6.000 sqm No. 2 DIY retailer in The Netherlands

4.600 sqm visit + manager No. 1 DIY market leader in The Netherlands
4.400 sqm visit + manager No. 3 DIY retailer in The Netherlands
Hornbach, 12.000 sqm German discount retailer in Holland

28 October
Store visits
aprox. 16.000 sqm Best Do-it-yourself center in Holland, in turnover
10.000 sqm New format, opened summer 2009, concentrated on small builders visits to small DIY concepts Multimate, Hubo (1200 sqm and smaller)- specialized store with good service close to clients

Please take a look at our website for further information on Jos de Vries The Retail Company. For questions about the study-trip you can send an e-mail to or call the Russian country manager Irina Bolotova +7 905 7182590

Claudia Sträter opens new store in Batavia Stad, the factory outlet shopping center of The Netherlands

Claudia Sträter opened yesterday its new store in Batavia Stad, the factory outlet shopping center of The Netherlands.

Claudia Sträter recently appeard in the news because The Retail Group Maxeda sold the fashion chain to the Dutch investment group 2Deal Ventures. This investment / consultancy group focuses on small and mediumlarge companies with a high potential. This investment group has over 20 years of experience in different sectors, also in retail. 2Deal Ventures is also involved in the success of the famous Dutch candy store Jamin, with over 150 stores in The Netherlands.
The realisation of the new store of Claudia Sträter was done by
Retail Bouw Management, the sister company of Jos de Vries The Retail Company.
Please visit our website for further information on RBM Retail Bouw Management.

Retailtrends in the world of food retail: Innovative beverage departments in supermarkts

Retailtrends from all over the world. This item appears monthly in the German magazine for food professionals Rundschau für den Lebensmittelhandel and Jos de Vries The Retail Company is responsable for the articles where the latest trends on the different topics are presented.
The theme is this month to show some innovative beverages departments in European Retail.
Carrefour - Spain
In this new product presentation in one of the hypermarkets of Carrefour near Madrid, the hypermarket chain adapted to the requirements of the clients. Before the hypermarket was a big area with long aisles of products and the same kind product presentation on standardized shelves. After the change you could see bright, modern aisles, promotion and seasonal displays to attract the attention of the beverage area. Sodas and water products are placed near to the check outs and the aisles have been “broken” so the clients do not have to walk the whole aisle to return.

Globus – Germany
That a beverage department can be very attractive shows the German supermarket Chain Globus. Their supermarket based in Ludwigshafen has been selected as “best beverage department of Germany in 2008”. At an area of 2.200sqm the clients can find almost every type of drink possible. This innovative beverage department has a cooling area, 5 modern recycling points and different tasting areas. The different product groups in this department are communicated with thematic images and action corners. At the entrance the visitors directly find a snack and information corner.
At this link you can find more information on this innovative store concept.

Land Supermarkets – Russia
In its beverage department the Russian Retailer Land Supermarkets (St. Petersburg) is focusing on exclusivity. The products that have been selected by this supermarket chain are premium products, presented in a luxery way. The lighting and creative product displays give the whole store a luxery image. The total assortment of beverages consists of a total of more than 22.000 different products.

Jumbo – The Netherlands
The Dutch softdiscounter Jumbo is famous for its seven claims. One of these claims is the return of money when the same product is cheaper at a different supermarket. This also accounts for the innovative wine department. This wine department, different than other discounters, has a luxery image. With big focus elements and high shelves Jumbo creates the image of low pricing in a pleasant ambiance.


Supermarket of the future: trends and developments in the world of retail

To form a picture of how things will be in the future, it is first necessary to take a good look at the past, and to ask a number of different questions.
In the past fifty years, have supermarkets undergone an essential change? We monitor such logistical and technological developments as ordering systems, check-outs and ICT. Naturally, going shopping is no longer the way it used to be: the assortment is larger and self-service departments enable the consumer to shop more quickly. However, the actual process of selecting one’s purchases, placing them in a shopping trolley and paying at the check-out has not essentially changed.

Demographic changes will lead to essential changes. In 2020 one out of three individuals will be of pensionable age. As a result of continuing high energy prices, supermarkets will obtain more and more products from the region where they are located, rather than on a global basis. The supermarket’s communication with the customer will become much more important. The origin of products will also increase in importance. Demographic changes will lead to essential changes. In 2020 one out of three individuals will be of pensionable age. Most households will be run by couples who are both earners, and the customer of the future will devote less and less time to running the household. Supermarkets will be the service centres of the future.

The Jos de Vries concept for the future, ORACEL, takes account of these developments. It demonstrates how today’s supermarket will become tomorrow’s service centre for every household need. Children’s daycare centres to pharmacies and plumbing services, the supermarket of the future will offer all of these and many other features. The concept also includes a drive-in counter for picking up the items one has ordered. Electronic developments, such as mobile scanning when checking out, RFID technology for stock taking, as well as selfservice check-out zones will all be as normal as the air we breathe in the shopping process of the future.

ZOO & Co. Pilot store opened with success

Jos de Vries The Retail Company developed a totally new pet store concept, with the product being the hero. The beginning of April the completely new store concept opened the doors in Herzogenrath near Aachen in Germany.

In the pilot store of ZOO& Co. Aquatop with a sales area of 1.000 sqm plus 300 sqm outdoor space (for firshes and accesories for fishes) ZOO & Co. worked together with the Dutch retail company
Jos de Vries The Retail Company. A new, innovative store concept was developed and realized.

Central theme is the recognition and the strong focus of the ZOO & Co brand, with extra attention for the animal care and animal welfare and the communication to the consumers.

The team of 12 people of this store, could welcome at the first three days after the opening 3.145 paying customers. The start and the months that followed are very promosing. Jürgen Grohs, one of the owners of the ZOO & Co Aquatop-store, explains: „The concept has a clear structure, with a lot of communication at the Point-Of-Sale.” There is an information desk where information and tips can be gathered by the visitors.
The products are presented in an inviting manner, what stimulates the sales of the products. The promotion shelves are ideal to present the offers in an interesting way. The price communication plays in this new concept a more important role, also influenced by the economical recession. The price is not the most important for the formula, the client is looking for the right combination between price, assortment and a animal-friendly presentation of the animals.

Buying experince is in the store of Herzogenrath guaranteed. The shopping experience is not only the store construction, but especially the product which is central and the price worthness of the products. The new developed store concept can be rolled out easilty to other stores of the chain.

The ZOO&Co worked together with the Dutch retail specialist
Jos de Vries The Retail Company. Creative Director Günter Bauer of Jos de Vries The Retail Company explains: „Different than a traditional shop fitter, Jos de Vries The Retail Company is able to translate more the story of Product, Price and Emotion.“

New in the ZOO&Co concept are the wall decoration with animal images and brand logos throughout the store with the claim “the best for the animal”. The claim is supported by emotional wall focus points with animal images, experiences and information texts and a service enter.

The furniture is lighted by energy-friendly lighting which varies throughout the day and on the section of animals. Sales shelves are transparent so the client can easily see the total assortment of products.

AQUATOP already has one ZOO&CO in Simmerath and the biggest ZOO&Co in the Euregio in Würselen.
To the clients of Jos de Vries The Retail Company also belong Edeka, Globus, Migros and Jumbo.

Jos de Vries The Retail Company develops innovative new fashion store: Venca (Barcelona)

Venca is the market leader in “fashion on distance” in Spain. With over 25 years of experience this company is the specialist in sales of fashion and textile via catalogue and internet. With a turn-over of 145 million euro per year, Venca has a market share of 60% in (clothing) sales on distance in Spain. Since 1988 Venca is part of the Group 3Suisses Internetional, one of worlds leading postorder companies with a customer database of 8.500.000 clients. This group is present in 11 European countries (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Rumania, Slovakia and Spain) as well as in China, Japan, Taiwan and Tunisia.

Venca wants to come closer to their customers with the implemantation of the new multi-channel strategy, this means opening stores in Spain. The first store is located in Calle Balmes, in the city center of Barcelona, close to the famous, central square Plaza Cataluña. This new store is show room as well as pilot-store for the Venca brand, and tries to increase the service to the clients, present the products from the catalogue and stimulate the sales.

For the positioning and implementation of the new concept Venca elected Estrella Fernández (strategic) and Jos de Vries The Retail Company (development and realization of the new concept). The retailspecialist Jos de Vries The Retail Company (with headquarters in The Netherlands and further offices in Germany, Russia and Spain) is one of the leading design agencies in the Spanish and European retail market. In Spain Jos de Vries The Retail Company is well-known for the development of new concepts for Grupo Cuevas and Caprabo (big regional supermarket chains), Coca Cola and Procter & Gamble (POS display solutions) and Forum Sport.

The Venca store faced some drastic changes: the lay-out and the interior design were the focus points at the development of the concept with the products as central point. The entrances were made bigger, making access more easy, a central zone was developed with the theme “fashion you like and which makes you beautiful” and the communication and the brand of Venca was strengthened by the logo communication and the “brand wall” at the entrance. The check-out is placed next to the entrance and the fitting rooms are located at the end of the store, creating strategically routing for the “obligated” points in the store.

Inside the store and in the display window the fashion is presented by extraordinary mannequins, directly at the entrance some mannequins are placed seducing clients to enter the store. This all is well-balanced with the rest of the store. Once inside the store the clients are seduced and guided into new zones and product groups. The lightning presents every group in an attractive way. The warmth and the mediterranean character is represented by the light-brown and yellow colour of the walls, creating an open and pleasant environment.

The end result can be seen as very innovative and a big step forward in the world of retailing, a whole new experience for Venca, a new player in this competitive market.
Please contact Maurice van der Kooij for further information.

Venca, fashion

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