Central and Robinson allots B5bn for growth
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Central and Robinson allots B5bn for growth

Three new stores slated for next year

Mr Bron announces the 2022 business plan for Central and Robinson Department Store's business. Pitsinee Jitpleecheep
Mr Bron announces the 2022 business plan for Central and Robinson Department Store's business. Pitsinee Jitpleecheep

Central Retail Corporation (CRC), the SET-listed retail arm of Central Group and the country's biggest mall operator, plans to allocate 5 billion baht to open new department stores and renovate existing ones along with technology in the year to come.

Olivier Bron, the new chief executive of Central and Robinson Department Store, said the opening of new stores and the store renovations will be aligned with the changing lifestyles and new generation behaviours.

Currently there are 74 department stores under CRC. Of the total, 49 stores belong to Robinson and the remaining 25 stores belong to Central Department Store.

"Central and Robinson have overcome the challenges caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, with the success of the omnichannel sales of 120% year-to-date. Online business has massive growth while offline business continues to grow. Therefore, we are committed to opening our offline stores with the main focus on creating different shopping atmospheres and lifting up the standard to international level," he said.

In 2022, the company plans to open three new Robinson Department Stores including one in Thalang, Phuket in the fourth quarter of next year, bringing the total to 52 stores.

It also plans to renovate Robinson Department Stores in Chachoengsao and Nonthaburi provinces and renovate Central Department Stores in Chidlom, Lat Phrao and Rama II next year.

With the omnichannel strategy as the key to the company's robust growth, it plans to allocate 3 billion baht to technology over the next five years at Central and Robinson, aiming to deliver a complete omnichannel shopping service by connecting the worlds of offline and online shopping.

Central App has evolved into a super app, offering all services from Central in a single app, the equivalent of putting the entire store on a phone.

A range of social commerce channels have also been improved, including Chat & Shop through LINE@CENTRALOFFICIAL and LINE@ROBINSON, Central TV, Facebook Live and Personal Shopper on Demand 1425, a shopping service with a personal shopper.

Innovations have also been brought in to reach omnichannel leadership in the premium segment, such as the reordering service and easy shopping from a single location, to be piloted at Central Silom Complex this year-end.

Customers can also expect the launch of new lifestyle shopping Central TV Live on YouTube and Facebook.

Six key strategies have also been announced to help Central and Robinson pave the way for the store of the future, offering a real customer-centric shopping experience and set to achieve double-digit sales growth within the five years.

Strategies include the best in class product assortment and services including items exclusively available at Central and Robinson stores while focusing on importing new products and brands to entice customers and to elevate all departments to become ultimate shopping destinations.

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