Shoes of Prey wins gold at World Retail Awards for store design

10:51AM | Wednesday, 9 October

Australian online custom shoe design company Shoes of Prey has won gold at the World Retail Awards in Paris for store design.   Shoes of Prey co-founder Jodie Fox told StartupSmart from China, where she’s working with the company’s product team, the win was a “wonderful coup”.   “There won’t be many times in my life I can say I beat Karl Lagerfeld,” she says.   Located on the fourth floor of upmarket department store David Jones in Sydney’s CBD, the store has been outperforming expectations in the nine months since it opened, Fox says.   “It’s really proven itself,” she says, adding that the company is excited by its possibilities, although plans to roll out more physical stores were yet to be confirmed.   The store was designed by retail specialists The General Store and beat the Puma flagship store in Osaka, Japan, and a Karl Lagerfeld concept store in Paris in the less than 1200sqm award category.   Strategy partner at The General Store, Matt Newell, told StartupSmart his team approached the design in terms of creating an experience.   “I said to Jodie the last thing I will give you is a beautifully designed store. We wanted to present an experience,” he says.   The Shoes of Prey store is just 29sqm in size and dominated by a 2.4 metre high flower made out of the company’s shoes by set designers from the Australian Ballet and includes many of the materials used to make the shoes.   It features a table finished with soft black leather, chairs made with a range of materials like suede and stamped patent leather, a “signature scent” and “custom-composed” soundtrack that includes the sounds of high heels clicking and Fox’s cat purring.   Newell says he hopes the Australian retail industry will consider the importance of multidisciplinary teams when it comes to retail design and “goes for it” in future.   “Australian retailers have this terrible tendency to travel around the world and steal ideas from (British supermarket chain) Tesco and bring it back and do it half as well,” he says.   “We’re so focused on what the rest of the world is doing, we should be backing ourselves. The creative talent in Australia is off the charts.”   Shoes of Prey chief executive Michael Fox said in a statement: “This is our first foray into physical retail, so winning ‘Store Design of the Year’ at the World Retail Awards is an incredible achievement for our team.”

Aussie coffee start-up Harris+Hoole under fire over Tesco investment

3:13AM | Friday, 15 March

A trio of London-based Australian entrepreneurs has been forced to defend its coffee shop start-up Harris+Hoole for giving the image of an independent chain while being part-owned by UK retail giant Tesco.

The best and worst start-up ideas of 2012

1:31AM | Monday, 7 January

It’s been a big year for business ideas, with everything from Twitter toiler paper to transparent solar panels. Encouragingly, some of the best ideas have come out of unexpected places, such as Nigeria.

Jardin Fresh Life to offer franchisees a fresh start

3:24AM | Monday, 11 March

The Australian branch of global food retailer Spar has opened its first Jardin Fresh Life store in Queensland, with managing director Lou Jardin revealing there are plans to franchise the brand.

Tesco taps into virtual store trend

8:38PM | Sunday, 19 August

Tesco has launched the UK’s first virtual supermarket at Gatwick Airport in the hope bored holidaymakers waiting for their flights will want to order a delivery for when they return.

THE NEWS WRAP: Cautious consumers the new normal, claims David Jones chief

5:27PM | Thursday, 31 May

Cautious consumers who would rather save than spend are the “new normal” for retailers, the CEO of David Jones has warned.

Virtual shop a smart (phone) idea

10:47AM | Monday, 24 October

A British internet company is launching a “virtual” shop with pictures of groceries, bringing a whole new meaning to the term “window shopping”.

Bio-Synergy puts the chrome on the cake

7:18PM | Sunday, 24 July

There’s a new, creamy dessert on the market that not only contains fewer calories than an apple but, according to manufacturers, could actually help dieters lose weight.