Scandinavian Furniture Franchise BoConcept Celebrates Annual Convention in Denmark

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With the goal of reaching 600 locations by 2023, BoConcept looks at revamping its global growth strategy

BoConcept, the Danish-founded global retail furniture franchise with nearly 300 locations across 60 countries, recently met in April to celebrate the brand’s passion for interior design and its strong global presence at its annual convention held in Herning, Denmark. More than 800 participants from 65 countries including franchisees, visual merchandisers, store managers, sales associates and corporate staff members met to collaborate and talk about strategic changes for the year ahead.

The 2018 theme, Revolution/Evolution, focused heavily on what BoConcept has been able to accomplish in its 25-year history as a retail brand and what the brand hopes to accomplish in the near future. Leading the charge on innovation is CEO Anton Van De Putte, who joined BoConcept in September of 2017. His primary focus is growth, aiming to more than double the brand’s existing franchisee footprint over the next five years to reach 600 stores globally.

“We want to open these stores with franchise partners because we believe that the franchise model is the best model,” said Van De Putte during his opening remarks at the convention. “The franchisees that own their own store are fully in charge of how to operate the business. They know the local market, they know the local customers and they know how these people want to be addressed. I believe in that model and we as an organization believe in that model.”

To strengthen this franchisee/franchisor relationship, BoConcept is launching the BoConcept Academy, a training toolkit that helps guide management through the in-store sales training process. This manual focuses on budgeting, performance management, and general sales principles through a combination of physical, web or e-learning seminars, manager preparation and home assignments to ensure the highest possible retention rate for all employees. This tool was piloted in Germany but will be rolled out in all countries before September 2018 in order to boost existing sales.

BoConcept also hopes to enhance the customer experience by improving digital communication and launching an eCommerce website. Part of the consumer-driven approach involves the launch of several new products as well as new line extensions to already established pieces to provide more variety to customers with new designs, new materials and reduced shapes and sizes to cater to its urban clientele. The ultimate goal is to transform BoConcept from a production-driven company to an omni-channel retail brand.

“As we shift our focus from a product-focused brand to a customer-centric lifestyle brand, we’re creating an opportunity to generate growth by setting ourselves apart from competitors,” said BoConcept’s Vice President of Marketing Steen Knigge. “The stronger that we become as a retailer, the better we will be able to serve our customers around the world. We look forward to seeing what we’re able to accomplish with this new vision.”

The brand’s final initiative is to strengthen business to business sales. In the past decade, BoConcept has designed unique office spaces for corporations around the world and recognized how lucrative this opportunity has become with a growing desire for aesthetics that better fit a company’s culture. In the past two years, BoConcept has more than doubled B2B sales, due in large part to the launch of a new strategy by Chief Retail Officer Michael Linander. Within the next two years, BoConcept aims to make that area 30 percent of overall sales.

“We are looking to hire on more B2B professionals who will help us continue to drive partnerships with corporations in target segments around the world,” said Linander. “We’re introducing a B2B manual, offering a new discount structure for those that buy in bulk, and implementing a global sales pipeline to get better insight into our overall performance. By driving customers to our B2B look-book on our website and launching designs that match current trends, we know we have an opportunity to have even greater results in this category in the future.”

ABOUT BOCONCEPT
Since opening its first franchise in Paris in 1993, BoConcept has become a global leader in the design of bold, stylish furniture, boasting nearly 300 locations in 60 countries around the world. Founded in Denmark in 1952, BoConcept differentiates itself by offering premium quality, modern designs that elevate interior spaces to achieve their full potential. The company remains focused on creating functional furniture for the urban consumer through partnerships with the world’s leading interior designers. Backed by a proven global concept and strong franchise support system, BoConcept’s 13 U.S. locations include a flagship store, which opened in December 2017 on New York City’s famed Madison Avenue. For more information please visit http://www.boconcept.com. To inquire about franchise opportunities, please visit https://www.boconcept.com/en-us/boconcept/franchise.

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Alison Hoesli
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