The PC World and Currys stores in Fulham will soon disappear in favour of a single co-branded “Megastore.” The obvious question is: Why would you do this?
Currys and PC World are both owned by DSGi and indeed, in a number of retail parks they can be found side-by-side.
Pay a visit to the London riverside district of Fulham and there’s a retail park where the tendency can be seen at work - but not for much longer.
Building work is under way that will soon see the two stores disappear and in their place will be a single co-branded PC World and Currys “Megastore.”
This is to be achieved by the simple expedient of removing the internal wall that separates the two fascias and, hey presto, a much larger single store is born.
The obvious question is why would you do this? Money will be needed to create the single store and a fair sum will also be required to refashion the store along the lines of the new look branches that DSGi has been quietly rolling out since the middle of last year.
The answer is that according to retail logic, when it comes to size, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. The theory goes that even if the offers are identical, a single co-branded outlet to which the tag ‘Mega’ can be applied is a more powerful marketing tool than two smaller individually labelled and separate branches.
The reopening of the Currys store on Croydon’s Purley Way last week stands as a case in point.
There has been a Currys at this location for years and the strip of large sheds that lines this part of the A23 comprises one of London’s most established edge-of-town retail destinations.
How do you therefore tell shoppers that the Currys in this location is now nearly twice the size (a large mezzanine has been inserted) with a correspondingly enhanced offer? It would, after all, be quite simple to drive by and stifle the yawn as you see the store once more.
The DSGi solution is to radically alter the colour of the fascia and to slap a large poster of somebody called Dr Dre in one of the windows.
And the surprising thing is, it works. With absolutely no prior advertising, on opening morning, midweek, the store was humming. Keeping the best elements of a brand and then making something bigger is, it would appear, a good way of rekindling interest in an offer. One for the price of two may sound curious, but it probably makes sound commercial sense from time to time.