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In fashion retail, for example, fashion trends are often driven by celebrity behaviour and can change very quickly, whereas supply chains – especially global ones – don’t respond fast enough to consumer desire for fashion immediacy. Yet digitization can beat obsolescence. Here are four ways.

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SUPERSIZING C U S TO M E R D ATA

Retailers like Tesco and Walmart have for years blazed the trail in capturing and analysing information about customer needs. The challenge now is to create a much more finely grained picture of customer needs, by integrating data from all sources to create a single customer view. This means that patterns of online consumption can be combined with information on retail

purchases as well as other sources of information to create a truly connected enterprise. For example, video cameras can now capture data on the gender and age of shoppers in shopping centres, which means that retailers can shape the layout of space and match the timing of different promotions to patterns of consumer behaviour. This is a win-win. These insights allow retailers to sell more goods and services, but customers also benefit because offerings are targeted to their needs. The main constraints to this have been the lack of analytical talent and the inability of legacy systems in established businesses to work well together. Improved connectivity and increasing processing power coupled with device miniaturization have enabled startups like Berlin-based Lesara to show the way. It Q3 2017 Dialogue

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Dialogue Q3 2017