Currys Stories September 11, 2015

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Rollout of Apple Watch to 3rd-party retailers continues with Currys/PC World in the UK

Apple is continuing its rollout of the Apple Watch to third-party resellers, large UK electrical chain Currys/PC World now showing the Watch on its homepage as ‘Coming Soon.’ The chain is owned by Dixons, whose former CEO John Browett had a short and unpopular stint as head of retail at Apple before parting ways with the company.

Apple first made the Watch available to third-party retailers in the form of Best Buy in the U.S., followed shortly afterwards by the same chain in Canada – with other chains in Australia, France and Germany following on.

It is not, however, the first time the Apple Watch has been sold by other retailers in the UK, with famous London department store Selfridges on board for the launch.

Currys Stories January 31, 2012

We reported last night that Apple officially appointed CEO of Dixons John Browett as its senior vice president of Retail following Ron Johnson’s departure in October of last year. Browett is leaving his position at Dixons Retail, which operates various United Kingdom-based retail stores including Currys, Currys.digital, and PC World. Dixons is one of the largest electronics chains in Europe, and PC World, the last on that list,  is one of the largest computer/consumer electronic retailers in the U.K. It also has a reputation of being a big-box consumer electronic store that consumers describe as “the worst of Best Buy and Radio Shack combined.”

While U.K. product-testing and consumer advocacy group Which? consistently ranked both Currys Digital and PC World at the bottom of its research regarding the Top 100 retail chains, a report from Financial Times explained “Apple has mystery shopped and been impressed.” Specifically, the report mentioned “a system of decision trees to match customers with products” that Browett has implemented while at Dixons.

The calculation of Mr Cook may be that if Mr Browett is good at selling people products that bore them, he will do even better selling them i-gadgets that they lust after.

According to reports in November from BBC, Browett recently renovated more than 250 stores, implemented new service, and customer support strategies. However, the company reported first-half losses of just over £25 million (slightly lower than expected, but higher than losses of £6.9 million the year prior). In 2009, Retail Week (via GigaOm) profiled Browett, calling him “affable and intellectual” and describing his “schoolboy enthusiasm” for technology during a trip to PC World. Here is an excerpt: expand full story

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