on high street!
52 high street stores • 8 premium retail chains • 2 countries • over a million annual visitors
contribution by category
Location. Location. Location.
I'm sure you've heard this a million times. And then some. After all, it makes perfect sense doesn't it? The more people ("foot traffic") pass your store, the higher the chances of exposing your brand, and selling your products to them.
Malaysia has 3 of the largest shopping malls in the world (2015/2016), and together with Singapore, takes retail therapy rather seriously!
With 20 of the top shopping malls in Kuala Lumpur within 30 minutes drive of each other, each mall houses big retail chains, high-street brands, indie labels, local boutiques, and some even host onsite weekly street markets.
Although each mall has a collection of different stores, a different atmosphere, and attracts different segments of consumers, they do have one thing in common - they all have very high "foot traffic" comprising middle-upper income consumers, ready to buy!
So, the only question that remains is, "how do I get my brand/products in there?". Well, fortunately for you, that's what we do best!
"Time to cross the border!"
With our partnerships in Malaysia going well, we jumped at the opportunity to expand into Singapore with 2 of our retail partners, eventually selling through 12 stores, including stores at all the airport terminals!
"Zero net growth!"
2007 saw the introduction and boom of game cafes and stores, but most of them did not last long as they were undercapitalised, had poor business models and were badly managed. Every new player wanted a piece of the action and started making all sorts of dubious claims to win customers. Real life hunger games.
"I can't find Eurogames!"
I started importing Eurogames as I simply could not find them available in Malaysia! The closest stores were in Singapore, 300km away! My first shipment was 2 cartons from Mark (Days of Wonder) and my plan was to give them away as gifts, in the event my gaming friends didn't buy them up!
"Light at the end of the tunnel?"
Our retail partner stores in Malaysia have been in lockdown for almost 8 months, since March 2021 (6 months in Singapore), and all of them are struggling. No cash coming in, debts mounting, and to date, 5 stores have already shuttered, with another 3-4 on the horizon. We do see the light at the end of the tunnel, but I'm not sure who will actually reach it.
RETAIL CHAINS & NON-GAMES
"The joy of numbers!"
We simply saw no future in trying to sell 100 titles to 20 customers, so we started convincing book and toy retail chains that we could sell 20 titles to 10,000 of their customers. We were spot-on and quickly realised that we could also sell 100 non-game products to the same crowd. We were spot on again, and by 2015, we hardly sold anymore Eurogames, since there were at least 100 other hobby & entertainment products (including party and casual games) that would sell far, far more! We eventually partnered the top 3 retail chains in the toy and book space, selling through a total of 32 stores.
"There seems to be an interest!"
I talked the owner of a small toy store near my home (where I frequently bought toys for my son) into selling some Eurogames, and was pleasantly surprised to learn that her customers were buying them up! Within 2 years, we were supplying the top game store chain and independent game stores.