Accent Group CEO Daniel Agostinelli discusses customer demand, the group's new digital hub and how the group views Amazon's Australian expansion.

You've previously highlighted the growing demand for click-and-collect across the brands, has that demand continued to grow in the past few months and how are the brands addressing that demand?

Click-and-collect has continued to gather momentum, what we are doing next is introducing a new item called Endless Aisle and Endless Aisle essentially allows us to open up the whole catalogue to every store and then to every customer.

That means its a huge customer order system in effect because you can actually be shopping in one store and if its not in stock, not only will the system look at what other stores may have it, it also checks the warehouse stock at the same time.

In February, you mentioned that 15% of Australian footwear is online and that Accent Group wasn't near that number yet. Has there been any growth in the months since towards that?

There's been a little bit of growth in that area primarily driven by click-and-collect, click-and-dispatch. It's not 15% but it's better than it was.

The group recently launched a digital hub in Melbourne. Has the hub identified any key takeaways from the data that it's collected?

The digital hub continues to learn more and more about our consumer behaviour and what they want to see. It seems that our consumers would like same day delivery, we're about to introduce that in the next two months.

Again, you need the technology and smarts to do that. We are also looking to further strengthen our warehouse DC distribution and by that I mean, we are looking for much more of an automated system whereby particularly online orders will be packed at between 4am and 6am so that's how we're going to meet that same day delivery process.

How do you feel disruptors like Amazon are doing in the market and how do you feel you're tracking in the digital space to compete with them?

From our point of view, we have enormous respect for such an organisation as Amazon, first and foremost. If anything, Amazon coming to the market has ensured we have picked up our game and essentially strengthened all of our ecommerce capabilities and definitely pushed us to invest far harder than we probably would have without Amazon coming to the market.

Having said that, they've been here a little while now and from our point of view, we see them as another competitor and in the space that we're in, it doesn't seem to be their major priority at this point so there's really been minimal disruption at this stage. That may change as things move forward but right now, we are trading fairly well in a relatively volatile retail market at the moment


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