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The Entertainer - let me Entertainer you


Posted At: 08 November 2016 00:48 AM
Related Categories: Retail, Retailers


On track to expand both its national and international footprint, this month’s Spotlight looks at The Entertainer. With soaring online sales underpinning UK and international expansion, the toy specialist recently posted its seventh consecutive year of growth.

The Entertainer was originally founded by husband and wife team Gary and Catherine Grant in 1981. In recent years, it has experienced significant growth, optimising multichannel opportunities, and using online and mobile channels as a way to drive greater engagement, in-store sales and brand loyalty. Sales at its online site,, climbed 39%, due in no small part to its 30 minute click and collect service.

The retailer now has 127 outlets in the UK and recently announced it is opening its first European stores in Cyprus through a franchise partnership. The Entertainer has four stores in Pakistan and two in Azerbaijan, and aims to open standalone stores in Cyprus during 2017.

Much of The Entertainer’s success can be attributed to its commitment to innovation and an ability to respond to changing consumer demands, embracing the need for experiential marketing and personalised customer experiences.

Brand licensing has also been a vital part of the business’ long-term strategy and where The Entertainer has developed a point of difference. Profits spiked in 2014/15 thanks to the likes of Loom bands, LEGOmovie and Frozen. Recent collaborations include its 26-strong range of Nickelodeon licensed products, with craft sets, science kits and a magic box. This range was stocked exclusively, and supported by joint marketing campaigns by both parties.

Its "Super Saturdays" concept has also been hugely successful. Working with licensors and suppliers, these themed 360-degree marketing campaigns include TV, window takeovers, online, social, feature space in-store, competitions and product demonstrations. The aim is to bring their ‘best in class’ proposition to life in-store and drive interaction and engagement with customers. Disney Princess Super Saturdays resulted in a 20% brand market share.

The Entertainer has set itself apart through its charitable giving too, and practises tithing, donating 10% of its net profit to charity - this year it gave away £750,000.
Looking ahead, there have been some challenges. A recent investment of £1.2m in a new UK warehouse impacted the business’ recent results. Gary Grant has also been vocal about the impact of Brexit, warning retail prices will rise 10% as a result.

However, with a commitment to innovation and working in partnership with brands to create exciting new customer-led concepts, FSP expects this retailer to continue to delight children – with sales to support it.

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The opinions expressed herein are the personal opinion of the author and are not intended as statements of fact and do not represent the view of SnapShop or Pragma in any way.


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