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 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.
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.
MOD Caelus – Store Entrance
The MOD Caelus’ back lit diffusers with screen printed images helped make a bold statement. Alongside the store’s brand-new interactive floor projections and AR mirrors, the luminaire gave shoppers that immersive in-store experience The Entertainer were aiming for.
The simulated skylights piqued the curiosity and captured imagination of children and adults alike, extending a bright and airy welcome upon entering the store.
The luminaire’s innovative design features a back-lit screen projecting the image of passing clouds and a high-transmission diffuser offering outputs of up to 1354llm. All outputs are available with Analogue 1 – 10v, DALI , Switch and DSI dimming and now also in White Tuneable variants.
Lay-in and clip-in installation formats allow the recessed luminaire to fit perfectly into both exposed T and concealed grid ceiling systems to create the illusion of a skylight more effectively. In addition to the available range of graphic designs, specific images can be ordered upon request to match the corporate theme or purpose of the application.
Axant LED – Accent Lighting / Cashiers
Amidst all the eye-catching luminaire arrangements and light features, the Axant LED takes a more discreet yet highly effective approach to retail lighting. With its minimal optic window and asymmetric light distribution, the luminaire is ideal for highlighting goods on display or selected areas, as well as provide controlled perimeter lighting.
Barely noticing its presence, the versatile Axant LED recessed luminaire is available in lay-in or pull-up versions to suit different ceiling types. It can be customised to provide excellent accent lighting for a variety of retail spaces with four outputs packages between 2300llm and 5197llm across two body sizes. At the store, luminaires were positioned directly above the cashiers desks to support interactions with staff during purchases, transactions and dealing with customer enquiries. Its narrow asymmetric beam ensured that light was directed towards the tills, creating a subtle yet attractive wall-wash effect, without overspilling into other areas causing excessive and uncomfortable light levels.
Thanks to the latest Lumileds LEDs and reliable Philips drivers the Axant LED offers the same or improved performance of fluorescent equivalents at less than half the energy consumption and increased longevity. Combined with the longer lifespan and extended lumen maintenance of its LED source, which eliminates the need to frequently replace lamps, the Axant will guarantee immediate and long-term return on investment for The Entertainer.
A high transmission opal diffuser and high quality LED source allows the Axant LED to offer an efficiency of up to 98 luminaire-lumens per circuit watt and superb light quality.
For increase flexibility this range is available in a number of digital and analogue dimming options as well as White Tuneable.
GyroLight LED – DALI-operated General and Display Lighting
The GyroLight’s robust steel housing and adjustable die-cast aluminium luminaire heads, make it the ideal choice for busy retail environments with frequent display changeovers.
Across the entire store, the luminaire was installed in twin, triple and quadruple luminaire head configurations (single also available) in a 4000k colour temperature, to act as either accent lighting or boost overall light levels and uniformity in other areas. These different configurations offer outputs ranging from 1010llm to as high as 8664llm to suit the application.
Each recessed gimbal head is angled at 40 degrees and is capable of pivoting and rotating independently, giving staff the extra flexibility to adjust the lighting to changes in display layouts.
Most importantly however, flexibility came with the addition of DALI (Digital Addressable Lighting Interface) which has now given staff the ability to dim the GyroLight as they see fit from the comfort of an iPad, to create the perfect ambiance for different events and demonstrations.
Beyond versatility, The GyroLight offers energy-efficiency and premium performance with its reflectors and Lumileds LEDs offering an efficiency of 104Llm/w and a high Light Output Ratio whilst operating at a fraction of fluorescent or HID equivalents energy consumption.
Installation of the Gyro-Light is made quick and simple, as the luminaire was delivered fully assembled and was supplied with prewired leads to minimise installation times further.
To add a fun and decorative touch, LEDextra provided a set of multi-coloured Homary Balloon pendant LED luminaires which livened up the centre of the store where the interactive “Launch Pad Tech Tables” are situated. Industrial domed pendants with a scuffed finish on the other hand, were used in the “Skate Park” section of the store.
For general display lighting and cabinets around the store, LEDextra also provided bespoke extruded aluminium channels, housing the highly-efficient and practical for the Osram LinearFLex LED strip, which is flexible and can be cut to size, making it easy to install in hard to reach areas with a practical self-adhesive back.
Other products used in this project include the highly efficient Ecopack LED and the popular Graduate LED which were used in the back offices and storage areas.
TThe LED4 multi-lensed emergency module was installed to satisfy the store’s emergency lighting needs.
The LED4 represents a breakthrough in battery technology, it is the first emergency luminaire in the Dextra Group’s range to incorporate a Lithium Ion Phosphate battery, giving greatly extended lifetime over traditional Nickel Cadmium and Nickel Metal Hydride products.
Designed to complement mains operated luminaires, the LED4 is a standalone non maintained emergency luminaire and is available in standard, self-test and autotest emergency variants
From a range of easily interchangeable lenses, two luminaires were installed in strategic locations, with both open-area and escape route type lenses to provide the required light distribution in different areas of the store.
Lithium Iron batteries provide far greater energy density and lifetime than traditional batteries, as a result of which the LED4 is supplied with a 3 year battery warranty. The luminaire construction allows for quick and simple battery replacement with a USB connector which also ensures that incompatible batteries can not be connected to the luminaire accidentally.
The energy-efficient and low-maintenance and Hanging Blade and EXI LED luminaries were used for all emergency signage purposes.