Combat retail challenges by taking ‘in-house first approach’, says reichelt CEO Ulf Timmermann


Retailers can combat the current challenging market conditions by adopting an ‘in-house first approach’, according to the CEO of one of Europe’s largest online electrical retailers, reichelt.

Timmermann: in-house approach

“The recent retail stats released by ONS show that major sporting events and good weather are welcomed by many high street retailers, but it’s not great news for all: food store sales increased whereas non-food stores saw a decrease in footfall. However, online sales remained unchanged at 18%,” said Ulf Timmermann, CEO, reichelt.

“This, coupled with the fact mobile devices are becoming an even more important shopping channel for customers (mobile shopping more than doubled from 8% in 2013 to 22% in June this year according to PWC) as the UK high street continues to be in crisis, provides an opportunity for non-food brands to maximise their online offerings to offset any bricks and mortar challenges. By looking in-house first, brands can streamline back-end processes and systems to become more efficient and reduce costs. Utilising skillsets and existing systems within the company can save on outsourcing and overhead costs, improving those fine margins that are so crucial in retail, and enabling brands to deliver the best price possible for customers at the same time.

“At reichelt, we’ve written our own ERP software, set up our own warehouses and manage all of our call centres, keeping our overhead costs extremely low. Everything we’ve done is off our own backs, which allows us to price our 90,000 product portfolio competitively.”