New WHSmith branding gets the nod of approval

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

Great reaction from London Gatwick Airport to my recent Blog on the impressively revamped news and books offering from WHSmith called London News Company and London Books Company.

This is what I wrote:

This is what a news-to-books (with plenty inbetween) store should look like. Bright, accessible, a good mix of products, clearly segmented, a self-service option. To my discredit, I didn’t know who owned The London News Company (or the adjacent London Books Company), so I asked a friendly staff member. “WHSmith,” she replied, “It’s our new branding.”

I told her what a marked contrast this was with the WHSmith branded store. “Yes, that will be refurbished next,” she said.

I’ve been tough on WHSmith in this Blog on occasions. So it’s important to acknowledge what a tremendous transformation this represents and what a great addition to the Gatwick retail offer it is.

Gatwick Airport Head of Media Relations Sarah Baranowski dropped me a line, saying: “I’m really pleased you like the new branding and configuration of the WH Smith store. 

“All 11 units will be redeveloped and branded to London News Co or London Books Co, with most complete by this summer. It’s an exciting new concept and in keeping with the new-look Gatwick!”

Bravo Gatwick and bravo WHSmith. What had become a tired, cluttered and time-consuming ‘convenience’ offer now is bright, easily accessible, clearly segmented and, above all, fast and easy to shop.

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