Business Trends

The 10 Most Innovative Retail Companies, by Fast Company

File Type: Free Content, Article
Release Date: February 2014
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A Feb. 10 article in Fast Company magazine, “The World’s Top 10 Most Innovative Companies in Retail,” explores how the retail industry has been reinventing itself and highlights 10 companies that “strike the right balance between physical and digital, experience and affordability, and convenience and quality.” Did your favorite retailer make the top 10?

  1. Warby Parker, for setting the standard “for merging online and real-world commerce while keeping its cool.” The online eyewear retailer opened four more brick-and-mortar stores in 2013.
  2. Amazon, “for leaving its competitors in the dust.” “Sizable profits for Amazon might be as far away as its promise of 30-minute drone delivery,” the article continues, “but one thing is certain: Its competitors have miles to go if they hope to catch up.”
  3. The Legaspi Co., “for rebuilding malls to meet cultural needs.” The company is reviving dying malls across the southwest and southern U.S. by redeveloping them in ways that appeal to Hispanic families.
  4. J. Crew, “for meticulously cultivating its brand to become the world’s iconic American clothier.” The company opened its first stores outside the U.S. in 2013 and appears set to expand to Hong Kong, Japan and Australia.
  5. Wal-Mart, “for deploying smart mobile solutions to aid its customers.” Walmart app users apparently make twice as many shopping trips per month and spend 40 percent more than non-app users.
  6. Ebay, “for expanding its business model to become retailers’ best friend,” including a one-hour delivery program, eBay Now, in New York, Chicago and Dallas.
  7. Burberry, “for upholding its legacy of impeccable design while catering to the digital millennial,” with new technology including mirrors that interact with products via RFID (radio frequency identification) chips.
  8. Zady, “for selling radical transparency as the new black,” featuring items that are ethically sourced and manufactured, most in the U.S.
  9. Farfetch, “for creating a one-stop shop for browsing high-end boutiques around the globe,” enabling customers to shop at more than 300 boutiques in 24 countries from the comfort of their own home.
  10. Macy’s, “for streamlining the notion of everywhere retail” and “spending the better part of 2013 completely transforming its supply chain … to ensure customers could order and receive products from any store location, in any variety and, when possible, on the same day.”