15.05.2014 – Longchamp invests in connected boutiques
The leather goods shop shall be giving it’s clients the opportunity to customise their Pliage bags via tablets in 25 of their European stores.
Suresnes, 15th May 2014
On the twentieth anniversary of it’s iconic bag, le Pliage, Longchamp has decided to innovate by allowing it’s clients to personnaliser their model via a tablet located in their boutiques. Since 2003, a similar service was created on the internet whilst celebrating the bag’s tenth anniversary. It was difficult to adapt that solution to their boutiques at that time. What seemed impossible then, has been achieved in 2014. Longchamp has selected 25 of it’s stores within Europe to offer that very solution and has created a tailor designed networking infrastructure to it’s needs, with it’s partner Waycom. Testimonial as to the technological challenge and the choice to innovate by a key actor in the field of leather goods.
Founded in 1948, Longchamp is distributed in about a hundred countries through a network of about 1800 stores. The group manages 276 of it’s own boutiques. The organisation’s head office is located in Paris. It is within these premises that the CIO has working quarters, and coordinates all the company’s technological needs from that base. The decision to launch the personnalisation of the Pliage bags via it’s own stores has bridged Longchamp the gap between IT and the outlet.
Actually, the organisation has turned to digital media in it’s own boutiques. The initial steps were taken ever since they chose to broadcast visual content on screens, and managing the audio environment. With this new service, the brand goes further ashore. For this to work, the clients must choose their model in real time, via a connected tablet. The order is thus recorded and invoiced simultaneously at the store. Le Pliage becomes available at that store or can be sent to the customer a few weeks later.
Whereas the personalisation service of these bags via the internet was limited to the nylon variant of the original Pliage bags. Since then, Longchamp has broadened it’s range of Pliage to a newly created leather version. On the event of celebrating 20 years of Pliage, Longchamp has chosen to launch a range of personalised leather Pliage bags and distribute them via the internet as well as it’s network of boutiques.
Such a service presupposes the availability of specific technology and infrastructure. The brand had to coordinate all 25 of it’s European boutiques from it’s Parisian head office. This is where Waycom stepped into the picture. The service provider has been assisting Longchamp over the past few years, as The French specialist of organised retail and franchise sectors.
Cisco’s Meraki technology is the perfect answer to these specific needs.
Waycom recommended the use of a network- oriented Cloud service, for Longchamp’s CIO to manage wifi access of their boutiques via a single administrator console, and Cisco’s Meraki technology again has the answer to this specific need. In less than five weeks, all 25 European boutiques were equipped. Meraki does offer remote administration possibilities as well as providing detailed information pertaining to the wifi network in each store. This technology directly connects Longchamp’s outlets with their IT department. This was one of the key elements that opens several avenues for the brand.
“We have reached a turning point with this operation Pliage. We have integrated a that lets us manage the wifi of all our European boutiques in real time and via our Cloud. In reality, it goes well beyond a networking configuration. We now have a bridge that negates the distance between our head office and our boutiques. We can deploy new digital services so much more easily. We have now fully landed in the age of digitalising our boutiques,” Corentin Violle, Longchamp’s CIO explains.
The 2014 Pliage personalisation operation is a resounding succès. The customers are living a new experience. The limits between services offered on the internet and in the real world are disappearing. Longchamp now has all it’s boutiques connected. The brand decides to extend the operation beyond the initially defined period. After France and Europe, Longchamp will extends this operation to the United States, the Middle East, Greece, Japon and Asia. The organisation envisages new operations that will associate technologies, the internet and it’s outlets in the near future.
“The borders between technology and day-to-day are disappearing. The example of this project that we have carried out with Longchamp’s IT- management only proves it. We have not only deployed an internet access in these boutiques. We have not only configured tablets for the clients to use a web-based service. We have connected these boutiques. They are now considered as interconnected properties. Longchamp can now interact in real time with these boutiques. Share information and data, act via the internet. Very innovative perspectives shall not cease to grow. ” Julien Jacquel, Waycom’s MD adds.
1. Waycom’s mission only covers the 25 European boutiques owned by the brand.
After being founded in the year 2000, Waycom is a telecom service provider of Cloud Computing, customised network connections, outsourcing as well as retail-oriented services. The organisation has strong expertise on the retail market. It is the principal partner of many a commercial actor in organised business as well as franchises. The organisation works with over 500 clients amongst which you will find names such as Sony BMG, Lafayette, Cdiscount.com, BETC Euro RSCG, Krys Group, MK2, but to name them. We are located in Suresnes, and have recorded an annual turnover of 9 and a half million Euro in 2013 with more than 50 employees.
Find out more: www.waycom.fr
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