BAA/Dixons to open two hi-tech concept stores in London Heathrow Airport – 28/04/05

UK. BAA Retail, in partnership with Dixons Tax Free, today announced the launch of “a dynamic, new retailing concept that challenges the traditional method of retailing technology products to consumers”.

Tailoring its offer in specially designed stores, the concept will offer fast, efficient service, said BAA. The fresh approach will be tested in two units in London Heathrow terminal one’s international departure lounge. The first store is targeted at leisure travellers, while the second showcases new technology for home and business use.

The move is part of BAA’s reconfiguration of T1, which sees 26 new stores opening on 27 May.

Dixons Tax Free Travel Store
The Dixons Travel Store has been created for customers with limited time, who want to purchase an item for their trip. The merchandising will encourage more self-service, though Dixons’ sales advisors will be on hand, according to BAA.

Core ranges will include digital cameras and camcorders, portable audio products, handheld games, portable DVD players, accessories and other essentials such as film, batteries and digital memory cards.

Key innovations include a new staffing structure and reduced counter space, which will allow customers to browse products more closely and get served more quickly.

Dixons Tax Free Technology Store
Designed for passengers with more time, the Dixons Technology Store will give its customers the opportunity to experience the latest technology for home and business use. Merchandising will encourage interaction and learning, through the use of demonstration areas and supplier showcases. Sales advisors will be on hand.

Core ranges will include computing products (laptops, media centre PCs, peripherals and accessories), satellite navigation systems, flat panel TVs, and communications products. Imaging and portable audio lines will be available.

A home delivery service will allow heavy or expensive items to be delivered to the customer’s door at a convenient time.

BAA Head of Technology and Entertainment Category Brian Woodhead said: “We’re proud to be able to work closely with business partners to develop and test innovative new concepts in such prime retail space. This new format is another industry first for BAA and its retail partners. It clearly demonstrates how we continue to push the boundaries on delivering unique retail concepts, setting a precedent in the retail market. We look forward to seeing a positive reaction and, in turn, positive results.”

Dixons Tax Free General Manager Andrew Milliken commented: “The opportunity within Heathrow T1 to operate two stores designed to appeal to different customer segments will allow us to serve more customers in the terminal and better meet their individual needs. Through the new concept, we will also expand sales of larger, home-delivered products at tax free prices for home and business use.”

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