Sunday 16 February 2014

Markets Have A Great Future

This is one man’s opinion but he is the highly respected CEO of the largest e-commerce site in Japan and among the world’s largest by sales.
Rakuten CEO, Hiroshi Mikitani, wrote an article recently about the clone wars in retail. He noted that “the variety and individual character of small and medium businesses is rapidly disappearing as ruthless efficiency and a uniform shopping experience bulldoze both physical stores and online commerce.”
He went on to say – “Ultimately, the customer will decide, but I believe that a rich, fun, highly competitive, efficient system that empowers merchants will win the day. This is why markets from Grand Bazaar in Istanbul to Pike Place in Seattle to Portobello Road in London are tourist attractions in themselves. They are shopping experiences, not just faceless transactions.”

So we have one of the movers and shakers in the retail world telling us that large public retail markets have the right ingredients for the future. And we are just about to enter a renewal phase where millions of dollars will be spent on our very own Queen Victoria Market. 

I have two things to say –  I like the “empowers merchants” bit in Mr. Mikitani’s quote and, if he is right about our future, I would like my Ferrari in white.

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