Like Humanic, Brantano has been measuring the height of the customer's foot as well as the length and the width with its 3-D scanning system since May. The Belgian shoe retailer indicates on its website that it has already recorded the 3D scans of more than 3,000 pairs of shoes available for purchase for children and adults.
Its parent company, Macintosh Retail Group, says that the technology has resulted in almost 100,000 “foot passports” issued to children, leading to significantly higher tickets per sale and giving the company a Customer Relations Management (CRM) instrument that it intends to develop further. Brantano has also adopted 3-D scanning technology in the U.K., mostly in order to find the right children's shoes from the multiple-width collections of Clarks, Start-Rite and Hush Puppies.
Macintosh reported its progress in this area of its business in conjunction with the release of its results for the third quarter ended Sept. 30. They indicated some progress in its “rebalancing for profitable growth” strategy, but mostly in its Fashion NL segment, represented by its shoe retail stores in the Netherlands.
Excluding stores that have been closed down or earmarked for closure, the group's turnover in “fashion core” increased by 4.3 percent to €158.1 million in the quarter ended on Sept. 30, with increases of 11.3 percent in the Netherlands and 4.3 percent in the U.K. and a drop of 5.2 percent in Benelux.
Judging from the available GfK data, the fashion core segment outperformed the market in Belgium and the Netherlands in July and August, with increases of 27.6 percent and 11.3 percent in the two countries, but then it declined sharply in September due to Indian summer weather conditions. With an increase of only 0.8 percent, the group scored worse than the market's growth of 3.4 percent in the U.K. during the two months.
Operating results improved for the Dutch fashion core operations, but not for those in Belgium and the U.K. The whole fashion core segment booked an operating loss of €1.5 million for the quarter against a profit of €0.3 million in the year-ago period. Macintosh attributes this mainly to higher marketing costs.
For the first nine months of this year, Macintosh reports a 9.4 percent increase in revenues in the fashion core segment to €444.3 million, with increases of 7.3 percent offline and 40.3 percent online. They generated an operating loss of €9.6 million, down from €10.5 million in the same period of 2013.
The group's total revenues went up by 6.1 percent to €629.1 million in the first nine months of 2014. They led to an operating loss of €16.5 million, up from the loss of €16.1 million recorded in the corresponding 2013 period.