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“Dark stores are very much the new economy”


The Impact of New Retail on Logistics panel

HOW STORES fit into the era of ‘new retail’ was debated at an afternoon session today at MAPIC, as a panel of experts looked at how many of the top international retailers are using their shops as fulfilment centres in a session entitled The Impact of New Retail on Logistics.
Vincent Gufflet, chief operations and services officer at retailer Fnac Darty, said that one of the main changes since the pandemic is that “things are moving four-to-five times faster” than they used to. He also noted that sustainability had become a priority for consumers.
“What is clear is that there needs to be a synergy between online and offline,” he said.
Ian Sandford, president of Eurofund Group, pointed to innovative international retailers like Inditex, which, through RFID tagging, now have an accurate enough picture of their store inventory to be able to use their estate as fulfilment centres, especially for last-mile delivery.
With sustainability in mind, he also speculated that people may be more prepared to forsake speed and pick up items from store in order to reduce the environmental impact of delivery.
“And I think shopping centres are ideally positioned for that,” he said.
Berker Yagci, Chief Expansion Officer and General Manager of Getir France, a pioneer of ultrafast grocery delivery, discussed the role of dark stores as a concept that a business can be built around.
“Dark stores are very much the new economy,” he said. “But ultimately the consumer will decide how everything fits together.”
 
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