FORGING the way forward into the future of retail, Quill City Mall Kuala Lumpur is taking a new turn in 2020 with a brand-new retail strategy that marries physical shopping with digital. This move is all about creating a meaningful shopping platform for stakeholders, including local entrepreneurs.
“The idea behind this is to reposition the mall in this currently challenging market. It redefines the purpose of a mall and creates our own playing field. This new concept integrates online and offline shopping and aims to pull the online audience to the offline experience. To inspire confidence in this idea, we will have the largest physical space of 4,831sqm (52,000sqft) – the largest such space in South-East Asia in the form of a ‘phygital’ mall, JD Concept Store,” says Quill City Mall Kuala Lumpur senior vice president Justin Liew.
To kick-start this move into the ‘phygital’ era of shopping, five retail industry experts explored the future of retail as impacted by the ‘phygital’ era at an expert forum held at Quill City Convention Centre.
Five industry experts led the forum on Future Proof Your Business – New retail Innovations and Interventions. This expert forum was moderated by Jonathan Case. The panel consisted of Koong Wai Seng (Group CEO of Quill Group of Companies), Anwar Jumabhoy (industry expert), Kent Lee (Smuzcity founder), Redza Shahid (Grubcycle founder) and Cheong Chia Chou (PUC Berhad chief executive officer).
According to Quill Group of Companies Group chief executive officer Koong Wai Seng, it is time we welcome the ‘phygital’ era as more retail sales have shifted online with the rise and prevalence of technology. However, the joy of being able to see, touch and feel the product prior to purchase still remains. The platform of purchase itself is secondary to consumers.
While the fun of shopping hasn’t changed, the way we shop certainly did. Ever-evolving consumer expectations require retailers to constantly adapt to meet their needs for comfort, convenience and entertainment.
“We need to challenge retailers that haven’t been focused on pushing their products online to reimagine the essential role physical experience plays in building strong and memorable relationships with their customers,” says Koong.
He explains that a ‘phygital’ mall creates a balanced retail ecosystem converging in experience and fostering a meaningful and intimate relationship between all stakeholders.
“It is about designing a shopping platform, a journey within a physical space, with consumer-centric tech infrastructure that facilitates interaction between consumers and brands throughout the shopping experience.”
He also said that the decision to build ‘phygital’ features into the mall comes from the earnest purpose to become a tool to empower small and medium sized retailers and home-grown entrepreneurs. With technology-fuelled infrastructures and phygital tools, international and local businesses are encouraged to expand their audience reach and improve their bottom line.
From borderless payment, borderless logistics and live streaming marketing by influencers, Quill City Mall Kuala Lumpur is determined to provide a borderless shopping and retail platform where local shoppers as well as businesses can access the global marketplace for purchase and trade.
Koong adds: “Retailers, from small to large, both international and local, will be able to leverage on the ‘phygital’ infrastructure we have built to engage with audiences that they wouldn’t have otherwise. We believe that a part of leading into the future means lifting everyone in the industry as you grow.”
Quill City Mall Kuala Lumpur also announced new tenants that are already on board to building their very first ‘phygital’ concept store in Malaysia, which include JDX Presto, E-Sports Center and UniKL.
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