John Lewis′s JLAB Launch New Initiative

John Lewis’s JLAB innovation programme has announced that they will be launching a new initiative bidding to find start-ups and established business who are paving the way for unique retail experiences. Successful applicants will have the full support of the department store allowing them to develop and further their creative plans.

John Lewis partner and director of customer experience, Peter Cross, says: “As customer expectations of the shopping experience grow at the fastest pace in living memory, John Lewis & Partners is actively looking to engage with the brightest and most entrepreneurial minds in the nation, whether that be a new technology solution to make shopping more convenient, or an idea that will fundamentally transform how the nation shops.”

For a while now, John Lewis has been investing in experiential retail, in a bid to bolster their sales and profits. The introduction of ‘Experience Desks’, which offer customers concierge style shopping by rethinking and expanding its personal styling service, and the wide range of events and experiences held in-stores, such as gin masterclasses or cinema screenings, have been very popular with the public.

The new experiential retail challenge follows two other JLAB initiates that launched earlier this year, “health and wellbeing” and “reducing the impact of plastic waste” with more than 200 entries being received across both challenges. Entries for the experiential retail challenge are to made via jlab.co.uk and applications will close at midnight on 25 November. Successful applicants will pitch their ideas to a panel of seven judges, made up of senior leaders from across the John Lewis Partnership.

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