Following a trial in six stores, a 1,700 sq ft (160 sq m) flagship opened this week at a former New Look in Cardiff that applies the lessons learned from Cribbs Causeway, according to Orange director of retail Sian Doyle.
Externally, the familiar Orange fascia has been replaced with a plain black surround for the windows and the size of the brand’s logo has been reduced. Inside, in addition to the normal practice of dividing pay-monthly from pay-as-you-go shoppers, there is a features wall providing a range of digital services for customers at the front of the shop and there are rectangular overhead beacons providing in-store navigation.
Doyle said: “We’ve had a couple of formats that have been going for a while and some of them are five years old. Our aim was to create a store design that would be modular, which you could install in a small or a big shop and it would look the same.
“We’ve brought the product into the middle of the shop, which helps to bring it alive.”
Orange area manager Alan Howard said the Cardiff store was now “much more open”.
“In a normal store we tend to trade from about half or two-thirds of this space,” he added. “This is much easier to segment.”
Orange intends to convert 50 more stores before Christmas and the entire 343-strong portfolio by Christmas 2009.
The new-look interior is the outcome of a partnership between Orange and London design consultancy Quinine. The£180,000 fit-out was carried out by Bedford and Havenhand.