In terms of sales, Media-Saturn is METRO GROUP’s second-largest sales line and number one among consumer electronics stores in Europe. Media Markt, Saturn, the online retailer Redcoon and the Russian online shop 003.ru belong to the group of companies. These sales brands carry out business autonomously in the marketplace. The company 24–7 Entertainment, one of Europe’s leading providers of technology for the distribution of digital content, is also part of the sales line. In addition, Media-Saturn holds a stake in Xplace, a technology service provider that is one of the leaders in the European market for interactive customer information, as well as in Flip4New, a leading German platform for purchasing used electronic products.
Since 2010, the two sales brands Media Markt and Saturn have been systematically transforming themselves by employing a clearly defined multichannel strategy in which the stationary business is closely linked to corresponding online shops and mobile offerings. The core competences of attractive prices, large selection, innovation, brand variety, service offers and eye-catching advertising will remain key objectives in the future. This strategy is designed to fuel the continued international growth of Media Markt and Saturn.
Redcoon and 003.ru, on the other hand, are positioned as online providers of discounted electronic products and sell them exclusively via the Internet.
Flip4New purchases used electronic products through Media Markt and Saturn in exchange for vouchers. In Germany, customers can make these transactions on mediamarkt.de and saturn.de as well as in all Saturn stores. Customers in Austria, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain and Sweden can also take advantage of this service. It is to be introduced in Belgium, Italy and Switzerland by the end of 2014.
Multichannel and dual online strategy
Consumers are increasingly going online to learn about products and to obtain goods and services. The Media-Saturn group of companies has responded to this trend in its dual online strategy. While Media Markt and Saturn increasingly serve customers both at stationary stores and in online shops, Redcoon and 003.ru have exclusively positioned themselves as pure online retailers. The objective is to also lead the European market for online consumer electronics retailing.
A core element of the strategy employed by Media-Saturn is the dovetailing of sales channels. As a result, Media Markt and Saturn customers can choose to purchase products online from home, with their smartphones while on the go or in their local consumer electronics store. Products can be ordered online and, if available, picked up on the same day at the nearest store. If a customer needs additional assistance with the product purchased online, he or she can also get this at a selected Media Markt or Saturn store. In some cases, service packages can also be booked online. To provide customers with even more flexible online shopping options, Media Markt and Saturn are currently testing same-day delivery and scheduled deliveries in a number of cities in Germany. In nearly all countries, Media Markt and Saturn have improved their online offering for smartphones so customers can shop while they are on the go. The multichannel strategy will be systematically expanded. In financial year 2013/14, our Media-Saturn sales line extensively revamped its structures to meet multichannel needs and adapted its internal processes, structures and interfaces to address the requirements of the new strategy. At Media-Saturn E-Business GmbH, all operational areas that were formerly located in various areas of the company were combined in a cross-channel manner. At the end of financial year 2013/14, customers in 13 countries could shop online or on mobile devices at Media Markt and Saturn: in Austria, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.
Moreover, Media Markt and Saturn are increasingly positioning themselves in the digital entertainment segment. For several years now, they have been offering digital products online – including music and film files, video games, computer programs and e-books. Through a subscription system, the online service JUKE, operated by 24–7 Entertainment GmbH, provides customers with unlimited access to more than 25 million music tracks in a streaming process – via computers, smartphones and tablets as well as selected digital home entertainment systems.
The second core element of the online strategy of Media-Saturn is pure online retailing. The sales brand Redcoon, one of the largest German-language online discounters for televisions, household appliances, computers, notebooks, smartphones, digital cameras and stereos, is represented in a total of eight European countries. With Redcoon, our sales line can target price-conscious consumers who shop online. In Russia, Media-Saturn does business in this segment by way of the company 003.ru.
A culture of competition
Media Markt, Saturn, Redcoon and 003.ru act as competitors in the marketplace, a fact that fuels their performance. In addition, the individual Media Markt and Saturn consumer electronics stores are generally positioned as independent companies in which the local managing director holds a stake of up to 10 per cent. This organisational structure provides managers with decision-making freedom and facilitates entrepreneurial thinking and actions. It also ensures that each store can flexibly react to local conditions. For example, a large number of customer contacts, advertising campaigns, product selection and personnel planning are managed directly by the individual consumer electronics stores. As part of the multichannel strategy, stores also receive a share of online sales, including for products that are ordered online and then picked up in the store.
Comprehensive selection and service
Media Markt and Saturn view themselves as industry trendsetters. This fact is reflected in the selection and presentation of products online and in stores as well as store design. The entire assortment in flagship stores – marquee stores in excellent locations – includes up to 100,000 items, particularly small and large electronic devices as well as entertainment electronics and media. In the online shop, consumers can select from approximately 60,000 individual items, and this number is rising sharply. The sales brands also offer services such as financing, warranty extension, repair and disposal of old devices and appliances. Under the umbrella of “Power Service”, Media Markt and Saturn provide a number of additional services, including delivery, set-up, data recovery, inspection of built-in units and satellite systems, and maintenance packages. In July 2014, Media Markt and Saturn added their own mobile phone rates.
Large selection of own brands
In 2010, Media Markt and Saturn began to offer exclusive own brands in Europe: “ok.” for the budget price segment and “KOENIC” for high-quality small and large household appliances. Media-Saturn also introduced the “PEAQ” brand for consumer electronics as well as the “ISY” brand for accessories. In 2014, redcoon.de began to sell these brands as well. There are currently about 400 own-brand items available for sale. As a result, the consumer electronics stores cover all price segments and an array of product categories. To assure the highest possible product quality, the sales line works closely with well-known manufacturers. Own-brand products are available in most countries where Media Markt and Saturn operate stores. Media Markt and Saturn are also gradually adding these products to the assortments of their respective national online shops.
Strong marketing campaigns
Media Markt, Saturn and now Redcoon are known for their unusual advertising campaigns and memorable slogans both in Germany and in other countries. Media Markt and Saturn advertisements are designed to inform, entertain, polarise and attract people at the same time. During the reporting period, the sales brands once again launched marketing campaigns that caught people’s attention. One example of this was the Media Markt
campaign “Jetzt spart ganz Deutschland die Mehrwertsteuer” (We’re dropping the value added tax across Germany): for three days in July 2014, customers received 19 per cent off their purchases. For its part, Saturn further refined its brand message “Soo! muss Technik” (Technology: the way it has to be!). The campaign with the new character Tech-Nick that was launched in October 2013 was continued in 2014. Under the slogan “Bei Technikfragen Tech-Nick fragen” (For tech questions, ask Tech-Nick), the friendly “store employee” (actor Antoine Monot Jr) advises customers on their purchases. Tech-Nick also shares his thoughts on his own Twitter channel. Media Markt and Saturn have aligned their marketing concepts with the multichannel strategy and are continuously expanding their presence in social media networks. In addition, Saturn regularly publishes the free customer magazine “TURN ON”, which unites print and online media. For its part, Media Markt is increasingly focusing on integrating all media. In the process, the sales brand will fill the various channels with content depending on its needs.
Expansion and store optimisation
In Europe, Media-Saturn is number one in consumer electronics retailing. As of the end of September 2014, the sales line had 986 stores in 15 countries and operated a pure online sales channel in nine countries. The selling space in the consumer electronics stores ranges from 1,000 to 18,000 square metres.
In the financial year, Media-Saturn had 38 more consumer electronics stores than it had on 30 September 2013. The company will press forward with its expansion as well as continuously expand its online offering. At its existing stores, our sales line is continuously optimising its portfolio and fine-tuning it to address the latest trends and customer needs. This work also includes tests of new formats and space concepts such as Saturn Connect in Poland, a proximity store concept with small shops that specialise in connectivity and mobile products. Another format that Media-Saturn has been testing since May 2013 is Media Depot in Hungary. The concept is based on a simple warehouse atmosphere and a new product mix that includes a large number of white goods and supplemental items for such things as gardening and leisure activities. It is designed in particular for economically weaker countries and regions. With the newly opened Media Markt at the company’s headquarters in Ingolstadt, Media-Saturn has created a modern, multichannel shopping experience that epitomises multichannel retailing. The consumer electronics store’s numerous interactive offers represent the future for the sales line’s other stores. To profit even more from synergies, Media-Saturn in Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy and Turkey is focusing on the Media Markt sales brand. A large majority of Saturn stores were reopened in these countries as Media Markt.