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WHAT DID YOU
CLICK ON LAST
here can be no longer any doubt that the retail Planet Earth has been knocked off its long-
enjoyed, stable orbit and is being whacked about by Planet X, also called Niburu or ‘Online
Retail’. Now if you believe conspiracy theorists, Nibulu will crash into Earth in October this
year and will exterminate all intelligent life, maybe even politicians and Donald Trump.
And even if Earth itself has until October, the traditional retail world existing upon it is already
being obliterated, or rather, finds itself in a dangerous state of flux.
I hesitate to say ‘being obliterated’ because I firmly believe that traditional retail – consisting of a
piece of real estate, lights, displays, people, customer service and conversation (yes! conversation!
remember that?) still holds strong attraction for many people, and as many things vintage are
making a strong comeback (just look at vinyl LP sales, for example), it still has a future.
What is most likely to happen, nay, is happening right now, is that online retail is taking over some
of traditional retail’s territory, sending some brick-and-mortar retailers scrambling. Indeed as Paul
Greenberg reports (see page 8), “It is rumoured that some of our larger retailers have dedicated
teams internally that are focused on the Amazon play, and how they will strategically respond.”
What is more important, however, is what Paul writes in the very next paragraph: “But as is often
the case in business, by being, well, overly focused on the ‘threats’, we can miss the opportunities.”
This is where ‘omni-channel’ retail comes in. While some brick-and-mortar retailers are
scrambling, others are taking the new opportunity in their strides, looking upon the world of online
retail as a new (shop)window of opportunity, a new avenue, channel, via which they can find, woo
and sell to a whole new group of customers.
For those retailers, of course, who have recognised and embraced the new channel, there
remains the challenge of fulfilling its vastly different demand requirements, i.e. smaller orders, more
frequently, in a wider variety (multiple sizes, for example), and with regular returns. This demands a
rethinking of warehouse / distribution centre location, set-up, equipment and work practices, and it
is good to see that suppliers are well ‘on the ball’ with sophisticated and innovative solutions to the
omni-channel retail challenge. See SSI Schaefer’s comprehensive fashion installation (starting on
page 14) or Dematic’s cold chain ASRS (page 22) as good examples.
I hope you will enjoy reading your latest issue of MHD Supply Chain Solutions magazine.
TIME TO GET ON
The top five stories on TandLnews.com.au
in February were...
QUBE TAKES CONTROL OF MOOREBANK
The agreement for the development and operation
of the Moorebank Intermodal Terminal Precinct has
reached financial close.
TRUCK DRIVERS FEAR RAISING SAFETY CONCERNS
A Macquarie University report has revealed the major
reasons why truck driving is Australia’s deadliest job,
says the TWU.
CEVA OPENS MELBOURNE SUPER SITE
CEVA Logistics has officially opened its transport,
distribution and logistics hub in Truganina, Melbourne.
FIRST FREIGHT TRAIN FROM CHINA
ARRIVES IN LONDON
The first container train travelling between China
and the UK has arrived at the DB Cargo UK terminal
at the London Eurohub in Barking.
MERCEDES INVESTS IN DELIVERY ROBOTS
Mercedes-Benz Vans has invested in Starship
Technologies, claimed to be the world’s leading
manufacturer of delivery robots.
GET YOUR TANDLNEWS FREE EVERY WEEK –
SUBSCRIBE NOW AT WWW.TANDLNEWS.COM.AU!
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