Angus Thirlwell: ‘Forget the caterpillars – retail needs collaboration, not conflict’

Angus Thirlwell-people-propsect

Three years ago, I was spitting chocolate feathers. Customers on social media began alerting me to a suspiciously similar range of chocolate slabs that had appeared in Waitrose.

“Have they been made by Hotel Chocolat?” was the most common question. 

While touched by our customers watching our back, I became increasingly anxious about the confusion this was causing and the damage to our brand when that perception led to disappointment after the first bite.

‘Slabgate’ blew up very quickly once journalists spotted the social exchanges. Hotel Chocolat offered a ‘slab amnesty’, allowing disappointed buyers of the imposter slab to swap it free of charge for the real thing by popping into one of our stores. 

Subscription content

Please sign in now if you have a subscription or are already registered with us.

Retail Week

Register for free to continue reading

Retail-Week.com provides premium, in-depth intelligence that helps retailers judge risks, spot opportunities and identify what they need to do to win in the digital economy.

Register today for a taste of our high-quality intelligence and enjoy:

  • Two free article views per calendar month on Retail-Week.com
  • Detailed analysis of current trends and events 
  • Exclusive newsletters
  • In-depth reports, videos, interviews and much more

Discover Retail Week register now

Please note, if you have recently purchased a subscription, it may take a few minutes before your account is updated.