River Island reduces theft by 60% in flagship Oxford Street store with EAS tags

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River Island has reported a reduction in retail theft of 60% on security-tagged garments at Marble Arch Park House on Oxford Street, its largest UK store.

The fashion retailer achieved the result, based on a 12 month period from April 2016, after their its protection team made the switch to EAS device the Concept Tag.

The switch also saw a reduction in theft on non-tagged items by 27% at the store, with would-be thieves being deterred from coming into a store entirely once they realised the change had been made.

Helen Tierney, senior profit protection manager at River Island, said: “When we agreed to trial the Concept Tag I knew it would help reduce our retail losses from theft. However, I didn’t expect it to be as effective as it’s been so far – or so quickly.”

“The fact that shoplifters are moving to other stores as they know they’ll have no luck removing the tag is fantastic,” Helen continued, “and it’s especially welcome when it’s a River Island store in such a high-profile location as Oxford Street!”

The fashion retailer installed the Concept Tag at all three of its Oxford Street stores, as well as a fourth in Rotterdam’s Lijnbaan shopping district, in April 2016 for a 12 month trial. Approximately 60,000 tags were sent to each store.

Agon Systems – creators of the ‘The Concept Tag’ – has since sent the device to a further ten stores, with two more to follow later this year in the Netherlands and Sweden.

Sean Welch, managing director of Agon Systems, said: “We’re delighted that River Island has decided to expand their use of the Concept Tag to more locations on the back of a highly successful initial implementation.”

“Once again it shows how fantastic the device is as a retail loss prevention tactic, and to have it done in such a high-profile arena is all the more impressive.”

An initial trial with JD Sports in 2014 saw the Concept Tag installed in 12 regional flagship stores, with the majority showing reduction in tagged item theft of 50-65%.

The device subsequently won the ‘Best Newcomer’ prize at the 2016 Retail Fraud Awards.