The Entertainer

The Entertainer relaunches flagship store with exciting new LED system

ABOUT THE CLIENT

Following a period of notable growth, The Entertainer has consolidated its position as the fastest growing multichannel toy retailer in the UK. With year on year profits on the rise by a staggering 37%, the company has stepped up investment into updating its existing stores expanding into new territories.

To mark this latest wave of success, The Entertainer allocated a substantial budget of £700,000 to refurbish its flagship store in London’s Westfield Shopping Centre, in Shepherd’s Bush. Far exceeding its typical quota for lighting refits, the company was eager to make a bold statement with the relaunch of this particular store, reaffirming its core values and its place as one of the leading toy retailers in the UK.

Founder and Managing Director, Gary Grant, comments on the store’s reopening: “It is our ambition that this store becomes not just an engaging place to shop, but an exciting place for children to play too. It is The Entertainer store of the future and puts fun at the heart of the toy shopping experience, whilst supporting our vision of every childhood filled with wonder.”

The role of lighting in retail cannot be understated. Lighting sets the tone, the scene, it guides, it attracts, stimulates and delights – Getting the design to fit the brand, to work for your business, to influence sales, and make a lasting impression takes close collaboration with all parties involved and attention to detail. Dexretail has maintained a long and successful dialogue with staff at The Entertainer and have been the company’s sole lighting manufacturer of choice since crossing paths.

So far, the company has entrusted Dexretail with providing the lighting for 25 stores in the UK and 1 in Kazakhstan with 20 more new stores contracted per year internationally. For its global flagship store, Dextra’s team worked closely with store designers, electrical contractors, visual merchandisers and other contractors for a year to ensure that everything from design to commissioning was to fulfil The Entertainer’s vision.

“They were looking for something unique, fun, engaging and exciting, something Mr Grant described as an “immersive experience for children”

THE BRIEF

The Entertainer aimed to make a big splash with the relaunch of its 4500 sq ft flagship store. They were looking for something unique, fun, engaging and exciting, something Mr Grant described as an “immersive experience for children:”

With an extensive range of customisable products, access to LEDextra’s specialised high-quality components and dedicated assembly lines, the expertise of in-house designers and vast manufacturing capabilities at its disposal, Dexretail were able to turn an ambitious, yet unformed idea, into a memorable display of what cutting-edge LED technology can offer.

Unlike the lighting upgrades for their other stores, there were very few design restrictions for this highly bespoke lighting refit. From September 2016, when ideas first began to flow on the drawing board, concepts collided – fusing the futuristic with the traditional, the innovative with the tried-and-tested. Here lighting was to be as much a feature; an attraction as it was to serve as…well, lighting! Complying to all relevant guidelines for retail outlets and safety regulations.

The challenge was to manufacture and source products aimed to bring these ideas to life. Without fail, by December that year, Dexretail were able to present a proposal, accompanied by the respective product samples, that was met with unanimous approval and enthusiasm.

From a more practical viewpoint, luminaires were to guide customers effectively throughout the store and highlight toys on display in a clear and appealing manner. Light levels were to be visually comfortable and a balance between general and accent lighting was to be achieved throughout the premises without causing glare, excessive light levels or interference with other interactive technology.

In addition to making a statement about the growth of the company and strengthening its brand identity, the installation would also need to demonstrate a commitment to sustainability; selecting eco-friendly LED products which would also be easy and cost-effective to run in the long-term.

The majority of Dexretail’s LED products featured in this project, are manufactured with the latest LM80-verified Lumileds LED offering 90% lumen maintenance for the first 60,000 hours of operation. This means that in addition to offering a 70% typical reduction in energy usage compared to fluorescent or HID alternatives, the upgraded installation will be be far more cost-effective to maintain, as rapidly depreciating or failed lamps will no longer need to be replaced on a regular basis.

THE SOLUTION

Runway Surface & Continuous – General Perimeter Lighting / Bicycle Wheel Feature

Lighting in retail requires close attention to both practical and aesthetic factors of illumination. Versatility is key, as branding strategies, colour schemes and display layouts are often subject to change as retailers search for the best route to reach the customer.

The Runway LED range was designed with the dynamic and often exciting world of retail in mind. The smooth, clear finish of its slimline anodised housing offers a modern minimalism which is adaptable to a wide range of shopping environments. Furthermore, the luminaire can be surface-mounted, suspended individually or in continuous runs which can be configured in different layouts using corner sections and body lengths. A wide range of output packages of up to 4244llm, diffusers (opal or microprism) and an optional bi-directional distribution, allow each installation to provide optimal illumination wherever installed. Microprism optics offer compliance to BSEN 12464 3000 candela glare limitation and UGR 19 in various outputs for areas where monitors are in use. To match different colour branding schemes and interiors the Runway is also available in either black or white finishes.

Using these customisable options, the luminaire was installed in continuous runs across the internal perimeter of the store following the lines of the racetrack floor. Surface-mounted versions were installed in a square configuration with rows of suspended fixtures hanging at its centre above the aisles, providing even coverage and raising light levels to a recommended 500lux ambient light for mid-sized stores. Suspended versions were provided with a bi-directional distribution, providing 75% of downward light and a 25% uplight, using the reflectances on the ceiling to brighten up the shop floor indirectly and create a wider sense of space and openness.

Standalone versions were imaginatively used as bicycle spokes which were mounted onto existing circular panels. In addition to acting as decorative features, these two “wheels” helped balance the overall light uniformity and lux levels by acting as chandeliers of sorts in each room or passageway.

For fast, easy and flexible installation, gear trays were supplied complete with a 6 core 1.5mm through wire loom and quick release gear tray clips.

The Runway LED’s flexibility applies to its control options too, offering compatibility with all mainstream dimming functions (DALI, DSI, Analogue 1-10V, Switch Dimming and Bi-level dimming) and a wide selection of standalone sensors for Dexsor’s Reacta range for daylight regulation and presence detection.