John Lewis launches food outlet collaborations
John Lewis has announced it will be opening two new food concessions as part of a move to significantly develop its food offer and create inspiration for customers visiting its shops.
The retailer has joined forces with Hotel Chocolat and Joe & The Juice to open separate outlets in two of its shops. Hotel Chocolat's cocoa bar café concept will open in Edinburgh in early 2014 followed by York when its flexible format shop opens in spring 2014, while Joe & The Juice will open in Solihull.
Joe & The Juice focuses on health and lifestyle food, serving freshly squeezed juice and sandwiches. The brand was founded in Copenhagen, and now has 48 sites in Scandinavia serving its own specialty Cape Town coffee. It opened its first UK outlet in 2009 and now has four cafes in London. The John Lewis tie-up in Solihull will be its first UK site outside of London.
The Hotel Chocolat cocoa bar café will make small-batch chocolates on the premises using cocoa beans from Hotel Chocolat's Saint Lucia estate. The café will feature a cocoa-inspired menu and will have a conch on site to process cocoa from bean to chocolate. The John Lewis Edinburgh branch will be the first time Hotel Chocolat has opened a catering concession with a major high street retailer.
The move is part of John Lewis's ongoing strategy to create inspiring environments for customers in its physical shops. Last year it opened four in-shop Kuoni concessions, in 2011 it announced the creation of Beauty Retreats in four of its branches, and in June this year it opened Little Waitrose in its Watford department store.
Andrew Murphy, retail director at John Lewis, said: 'Food is a big part of our customers' lives; they already come to us for the latest kitchen gadgets, cookware from some of our best chefs, and for edible treats to give as presents. These collaborations will take our offer one step further, inspiring customers with exceptional food and drink freshly prepared in our shops.
'We want to create more compelling reasons than ever for customers to visit our shops, and partnering with two such inspiring brands will be a real draw. The concessions will sit alongside our existing Place to Eat restaurants, complementing them but offering something a little different from the everyday.'
Kaspar Basee, CEO at Joe & The Juice, said: 'We have extensive experience with retail cooperations from Scandinavia, through which we have been able to offer extraordinary customer experiences. We really hope to be able to do the same with John Lewis in the UK and thus develop our relationship over time.'
Angus Thirlwell, co-founder and CEO at Hotel Chocolat, said: 'We already have a strong relationship with John Lewis as our chocolate is one of the department store's best-selling gift food lines. This new venture is exciting for both our brands and we look forward to working together to bring a new and compelling shopping experience to our customers.
'People have adored cocoa for more than 3,000 years, but it was only in the last 500 that we started getting sweet on it. Long before anyone added a grain of sugar, cocoa beans were loved for their deep, savoury richness. They were roasted, shelled and eaten like nuts, and crushed for use as an infusion, garnish and subtle spice. As cocoa growers ourselves we are able to really draw on this exciting ingredient, and our unique new menu in John Lewis offers a delicious concoction of both sweet and savoury dishes.'
Notes to editors
The John Lewis Partnership - The John Lewis Partnership operates 40 John Lewis shops across the UK (30 department stores and ten John Lewis at home), johnlewis.com.
John Lewis - John Lewis, 'Retailer of the Year 2013'¹ and 'Multichannel Retailer of the Year 2013'¹, typically stocks more than 350,000 separate lines in its department stores. The website stocks over 250,000 products focused on the best of fashion, beauty, home and giftware and electrical items including online exclusives. johnlewis.com is consistently ranked one of the top online shopping destinations in the UK. (www.johnlewis.com). John Lewis Insurance offers a range of comprehensive insurance products - home, car, wedding and event, travel and pet insurance and life cover - delivering the usual values of expertise, trust and customer service expected from the John Lewis brand.
¹ Oracle Retail Week Awards 2013
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