Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Rising Stars of Retail

Featuring 3 award winning up and coming retailers, the next panel discussion was intended to explain to other retailers, how they are "leading the way forward". The panel was made up of Ian Jones (Managing Director of Azendi), Ben Phillips (Managing Director of Steamer Trading Cookshop) and Oliver Tress (Managing Director of Oliver Bonas).
The values of these companies are similarly alligned towards great customer service.

Azendi is a contemporary yet timeless jewellers where the displays are kept simple and classy; the jewellery range offers something for everyones taste (and to an extent, price range) and the staff are extremely helpful. A reassuring aspect of the company, is there ethics towards diamond dealing. "At Azendi, we insist that all our suppliers guarantee that all diamonds are from legitimate sources not involved in finding conflict and in compliance with UN resolutions".

If you live in London, you will probably be familiar with the Oliver Bonas brand - the lifestyle store/website specialising in stylish gifts. Whilst Tress was at university, he used to bring handbags and watches back on request from Hong Kong where his parents lived. The entrepreneur in him spotted a retailing opportunity which has grown to include 15 stores across London since 1993.  
Oliver Bonas cater for men, women and kids at all price ranges and apart from the products they offer, the brand is very proud of their exceptional customer service.

The Steamer Trading Cookshop is a family-run kitchenware specialist "passionate about what we sell and the customer service we offer". Ben joined the business in 2001 that his parents had set up in 1985 and has transformed the company from 1 store to 18. Their stores all have a very different look and the company tend to seek out unusual buildings to set up shop: all of which they feel helps to add to the customer experience.

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