One of the most innovative features at the annual Glee exhibition, the Retail Lab – new for 2017 - has secured backing from a wide range of leading suppliers, who have come on board as either a ‘Preferred Partner’ or ‘Selected Partner’. Here, ‘Preferred Partner’ Ivyline’s Director, Scott Thomas, tells us more about the company’s plans for the Retail Lab @ Glee.
Can you tell me more about what products you will displaying?
At Glee, we will be showcasing our latest innovative trend led products. Our latest innovations include top-selling concrete planters for cacti, patterned planters in the latest print trends, new and on-trend hanging planters, unique lightweight outdoor planters, contemporary fire bowls, plus new display systems and so much more. We are launching in excess of 200 new carefully designed new products. 2017 saw amazing growth in houseplant pot sales and our new innovation will help retailers to increase sales in the season ahead.
Why did you choose to become a preferred supplier of the Retail Lab at Glee 2017?
Ivyline is delighted to be a main sponsor of the Retail Lab, and to support Glee in bringing fresh ideas to the industry.
Working with major UK fashion and home retailers gives us a unique insight in to the upcoming retail trends and consumer spending habits. Ivyline is driving these changes through its business and we want to see the industry adapting to the changing retail world.
The Retail Lab is new and innovative. It reflects the changing face of retail as well as the health benefits of plants and nature in our lives. This gives great synergy between the vision for the future at Ivyline and the core theme of the Retail Lab itself.
What changing trends are you witnessing, and how are they affecting your business? What future trend excites you the most?
We are seeing unprecedented changes in retail trends, consumer buying habits and people lifestyles.
In the past two years there has been a big shift away from price based decision making in consumer purchasing, to consumers buying into a quality product that makes an instant impact in the home and garden. Ivyline’s trend-led patterned planters have become the number one selling range in our product portfolio, and our superb sales growth across all categories along with latest consumer spend reports give us the firm data to back this up.
Houseplants are once again fashionable as consumers recognised the instant impact they bring to the home, as well as the health benefits. Minimal maintenance plants such as cacti and succulents have seen phenomenal growth, as have foliage plants, particularly amongst the younger demographic. In one well known leading clothing fashion retailer based in key cities such as London, Manchester and Birmingham, our cacti pot sales have been more than triple the whole garden centre industry combined. Garden centres can learn from this success story. In garden centres, this upward trend has been reflected in our houseplant pot sales and we have seen a 1200% growth in the sale of terrariums. Hanging plants are also in huge demand.
Another key growth area is in outdoor living and outdoor entertaining. This is especially around natural light and heat. Over 55% of consumers in a recent survey rated re-designing their outdoor entertaining space as their number one priority for their gardens. In addition to this, consumers are looking for instant easy to maintain gardens with planted containers and raised beds as a top growth area. Listening to consumer requests in garden centres you can also see the traditional seasons for plants, leisure and other seasonal products changing. Consumers are no longer bound by tradition and you can see the impact of this over the whole of retail.
Technology is playing a huge part in consumer spend, décor and garden trends. With the online retail forecasted to grow by over 14% this year, way we shop is changing. The latest interior and exterior design trends are so readily available to view online, and as a result consumers of all ages want to see this in the stores that they visit. This demand will undoubtedly impact on the garden centre industry. Bricks and mortar retail needs to combat this through the retail leisure experience at their store; by increasing their own online presence so consumers can research their purchases, by building their own unique identity, and becoming a store with a culture of excellence in inspiration and service.
What value do you think the Retail Lab will offer retailers/buyers?
The Retail Lab offers retail buyers a source of inspiration both for product and their store environments. It reflects the latest trends in a rapidly changing retail landscape. It provides many thought provoking ideas and will inspire innovation back in our own business environments. It is an excellent addition to the show and we are looking forward to it further developing in the coming years.
See more from Ivyline at Glee by visiting the company’s stand Hall 20, stand K50-L51, or find them in the Retail Lab. More details can be found at www.ivylinegb.co.uk
Find out more
Glee is the UK’s leading garden retail show, focussing on building year-round profits within core product categories including Garden Care, Outdoor Entertaining, Landscaping and Garden Design, Pet, Home, Gift and Clothing, and Plants. Each year the show attracts thousands of buyers from top retailers, such as leading UK garden centres, builders’ merchants, multiple retailers, and DIY stores. To keep up-to-date on all the latest news log onto www.gleebirmingham.com or call 020 3033 2160 to find out about exhibiting.