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Selfridges owner unveils new luxury strategy

Jeremy Lim
06 September 2022

Following its acquisition of Selfridges, Central Group has unveiled its luxury strategy to achieve new heights as an international luxury department store leader.

Central group built the first department store in Thailand as well as the country's first one-stop multi-purpose shopping complex. Its first foray into Europe began in 2011 with the acquisition of Italy’s prominent luxury department store, Rinascente, followed by Illum in 2013, KaDeWe in 2015, Globus in 2020, and Selfridges Group earlier this year.

The group announced that its two-part strategy includes developing and expanding a collection of iconic stores in major tourist cities in partnership with luxury brands.

It added that it will works closely with some of the world’s most influential brand conglomerates such as LVMH, Kering, and Richemont to uplift the luxury assortment, store image and shopping experience.

As part of the strategy, several store transformation programmes and new developments are ongoing in multiple countries. At Selfridges Oxford Street, a redevelopment of the under-utilised hotel, car park and mews is being assessed to create additional value to its marquee asset.

Another area of the group's luxury strategy is its plans to become a leading e-commerce platform and partner of choice for luxury and fashion brands with global reach. Central Group said its European e-commerce platforms receive 30 million online visitors monthly and generates €1 billion in sales annually, accounting for 17% of total sales.

The group aspires to establish as the ultimate global luxury online platform by leveraging the following:

  • Selfridges’ global brand recognition
  • Merchandise & brand curation and exclusive collections across banners
  • Advanced technology and data to personalise and enhance customer experience
  • Expand presence in 11 countries, including Italy, Germany, Switzerland, UK and Ireland
  • Promote awareness beyond local market and to provide omnichannel services that pure online retailers cannot easily replicate, especially in Thailand and South East Asia.

Tos Chirathivat, Executive Chairman and CEO of Central Group, said: “Our department store business has achieved a remarkable milestone of having the world’s largest international presence of department store network, spanning across 11 countries, 80 cities, and 120 locations. Total department store sales will reach €6.7 billion or 260 Billion Baht this year.

"The addition of Selfridges Group into our department store luxury collection has made Central Group a true global leader in luxury retail with the highest number of international luxury flagship locations in the world’s top destinations, and a thriving international luxury e-commerce platform. Above all, we are the proud owner of 19 crown jewel of properties, mostly situated for over a century in coveted areas at the heart of major European cities like London, Zurich, Rome, Copenhagen, Dublin, and Vienna.”

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