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Karstadt and Hugendubel cooperate

Hugendubel launches a Germany-wide shop-in-shop concept for books in conjunction with Karstadt

Germany’s largest owner-operated bookstore is expanding its presence with the department store chain Karstadt. Hugendubel is launching a Germany-wide shop-in-shop concept for books in conjunction with Karstadt.

The Munich-based family-owned company, whose aim is always to be where its customers are, is taking a further step towards implementing its multichannel strategy.
To begin with, redesigned Hugendubel departments around 30 square metres in size with the latest and most relevant titles are to be opened in up to 20 Karstadt stores by the end of this year. These titles are already being selected by the booksellers at their Munich headquarters in collaboration with the publishing firms. “With the new shop-in-shops, we aim to cater for all customers who want to keep things simple and straightforward and rely on Hugendubel’s selection. All those Hugendubel customers who particularly appreciate the individual selection and advice from our booksellers in-store will of course continue to encounter this at our 90 or so stores throughout Germany”, said Maximilian Hugendubel, Managing Director, explaining the decision.

The new partnership underlines the fact that Karstadt is precisely gearing its offering towards its customers’ requirements and maintaining its wide department-store range. Chief Merchandise Officer Jörg Peter Schmiddem explained: “Our customers greatly appreciate being able to meet their wide range of shopping needs under one roof. People like buying books in the department store, which is why we will also have a wide range of books. In terms of titles, we are rigorously focusing on bestsellers and top sellers, i.e. books for which there is already substantial demand. What we do, we do properly and profitably. In Hugendubel, we have secured the most important player on the market for this sector so that our book business can be run as successfully as possible.”

Sven Möller, Head of Leisure Category Management at Karstadt, said: “At present, we have a book range only in selected stores, and we manage it ourselves – from purchasing to logistics to accounting. We will be engaging this owner-managed book firm at the end of our financial year. In time for Christmas business, we will offer a range of books in up to 20 stores, each in a space of 30 square metres – but under different conditions and more attractively for our customers and Karstadt. Our partner handles every single step in the value chain from purchasing and logistics to goods presentation in the store.”

To date, Hugendubel runs 17 independent stores in Karstadt department stores as well as one in KaDeWe that belongs to The KaDeWe Group GmbH. As part of the new concept, several of them will be converted into the new shop-in-shops. Overall, Hugendubel’s presence in the Karstadt stores will increase from 17 to 37. “As a supplement to our existing branch, online and digital business, we can even envisage this new concept in all Karstadt stores throughout Germany”, said Maximilian Hugendubel.