Ulrich Spaan

Ulrich Spaan
T: +49 221 57993-23
E: spaan(at)

Cetin Acar

Cetin Acar
T: +49 221 57993-12
E: acar(at)

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Award-winners 2018

At an evening gala as part of EuroCIS, EHI Retail Institute distinguish the winners of the retail technology awards europe (reta) for the 11th time at the Rheinterrasse in Düsseldorf. Three equally-ranked award winners were chosen in the categories Best Customer Experience, Best In-Store Solution, Best Enterprise Solution and Best Omnichannel Solution.


Winner in the Category Best Customer Experience

f.l.t.r. Mr. Stewart Giles, Mr. Mark Manfredi, Mr. Michael Gerling (EHI)

The software solution used by Halfords in its stores was already 10 years old and no longer met the requirements of its customers and staff. After the hardware was updated, it was decided to revise the software. Following a check of 46 software suppliers, including possible hardware combinations, Halfords chose Diebold Nixdorf’s MoPos. The solution included an extended PED cradle for use with tablets. By means of targeted omnichannel promotions it was possible to increase sales in the branch stores by 2%. The new processes led to paper savings of 75%, and the staff in the stores saved 2.5 hours per week.

Lebensmittelmarkt Isargärten
f.l.t.r. Mr. Michael Gerling (EHI), Mr. Robin Grosjean

Lebensmittelmarkt Isargärten worked with Scansation to solve the problem of long queues at the checkout. The innovative solution, which included a mobile self-scanning system, was integrated into the existing checkout points at very little expense. A hand scanner was the only device that had to be installed. Customers scan their purchases with the Scansation app on their smartphones. At the checkout the app generates a QR code which is then scanned. In this way all the items are transmitted to the checkout point. The cashier can see all the products, add or remove items, and finally initiate payment. This is only the first step, because there is a big potential. The possibilities include an integrated shopping list, personal product recommendations, customer loyalty programmes and in-store navigation.

f.l.t.r. Mr. Michael Gerling (EHI), Ms. Anke Dasenbrock, Mr. Martin Höflmaier

Together with Innoactive, a Munich startup, MediaMarktSaturn developed the HoloTour, which gives customers a picture of what shopping will be like in the future. In this augmented reality tour the virtual avatar Paula guides customers at Saturn stores to three innovative products and explains how they work using additional virtual information and animations. Paula appears in the customers’ field of view, greets them and then deftly flies through the store to the products. A Microsoft HoloLens with integrated microcomputer projects deceptively real virtual objects into the real environment. After the HoloTour, Paula guides the customer back to the starting point.


Winner in the Category Best In-Store Solution

dm-drogerie markt
f.l.t.r. Mr. Michael Gerling (EHI), Ms. Selina Ulme

With its decision to equip each of its store employees with a smartphone, dm has enhanced its support for employees in store processes. The company has been changing the merchandise management at its outlets in cooperation with external partners Diebold Nixdorf and Scandit. In one new process, customers go to a dm store to pick up items which they ordered through a dm online shop. Employees use Scandit MatrixScan to read several barcodes at once from packages; the correct barcode is highlighted in real time. When packages are received, Scandit MatrixScan automatically manages the number of scanned packages. When customers come to pick up their purchases, the system visually calls attention to the correct package. The user interfaces were developed with SAP Fiori. Work in the stores has become much more efficient through optimisation of these processes. The solution is modern and innovative, and it supports employees in their day-to-day work.

f.l.t.r. Mr. Michael Gerling (EHI), Mr. Jürgen Mäder, Mr. Mark Zwingmann

In order to meet increasing legislative requirements and satisfy customer demand for greater transparency, EDEKA opted for an IT-based change in the processes at its fresh-food counters. The solution, which provides digital traceability, is called fTRACE. Using available traceability information it is now possible to scan the barcode on merchandise in the counter to document its origin. The system is also very fast and permits documentation of special processing because a tablet/scan application is used. An information terminal in front of the counter and QR codes for consumers on the scale receipts provide all of the essential information. Customers can trace the origins of each product and each batch at the POS and at home. In addition, time is saved and legal certainty is ensured through digital archiving of the data. A database solution makes the data quickly available in case of checks. The process has already been approved by the authorities.

Marks & Spencer
f.l.t.r. Mr. Michael Gerling (EHI), Mr. Nick Hemingway, Mr. Andrew Bull, Ms. Anne Alderton, Mr. Christopher Thomas

The goal of Marks & Spencer was to increase the productivity of its employees and cut costs by giving them a means of handling service, sales and other tasks on one and the same device. The company had a large number of devices that had reached the end of their useful life and thus had an opportunity to consider an investment in new technologies. What it wanted was a portable computer that was user-friendly, last for five years, and have excellent battery performance and scanning capability. It also had to be compact enough to fit in one’s pocket. Through cooperation with Honeywell and Google it finally settled on a Honeywell Dolphin 75e with an Android operating system. Within six months it successfully introduced more than 9,000 devices in its stores. The networked devices gave employees easy access to information on products, prices, sales promotions and inventories. Moreover, they were able to give customers a better shopping experience.


Winner in the Category Best Enterprise Solution

f.l.t.r. Mr. Ulrich Spaan (EHI), Mr. Cetin Acar (EHI),  Mr. Yunus Palanci, Ms. Deniz Cagrici, Mr. Ibrahim Caliskan

Following a study of customer behaviour and purchasing activities, big data, cloud and predictive analytics technologies were used to implement a new infrastructure. The customers were grouped in segments and a customer-based communication and campaign model was developed. Seventeen segment-specific campaign algorithms were implemented in the project. The precision and the analytic content of the campaign efficiency analyses were increased by means of the A/B test model. As part of the project, dashboards were put online to monitor all of the steps in the campaign, from the first decision to the end, and display the productivity in the form of KPIs. The sales teams have mobile tablet applications in the store in order to get a better understanding of customers and offer them individually tailored service.

f.l.t.r. Mr. Ulrich Spaan (EHI), Ms. Ellen Löffler, Ms. Serpil Patek

BILLA’s in-house IT department and bluesource have developed a special app for IOS and Android that enables the company to reach its employees throughout Austria and conveniently supply them with company information. The app can be used by any employee with the company’s intranet log-in data. Employees get genuine benefits from the duty roster and digital employee card. By scanning the barcode on their regular employee card they can activate the digital card and use it for collecting discounts at all BILLA stores. Thanks to the hybrid development process, new content, navigation entries and even new functions can easily be integrated without provision of a new app. More than 2 million clicks in seven months demonstrated that BILLA has reached its goal of simplifying and enriching the daily lives of its employees.

f.l.t.r. Mr. Ulrich Spaan (EHI), Ms. Inna Helrod

FoodStarter is an innovative platform that enables startups to offer their products to EDEKA merchants. Each week, a number of new products are presented to registered retailers, who can request samples or order merchandise directly from the startups. Besides learning about the vision of the startups and how they were founded, they can test the products quickly and easily. The startups get feedback and can improve their products, while at the same time increasing their range and gaining access to hundreds of independent merchants throughout Germany. Good performance of a product on the shelf opens up additional opportunities for growing along with EDEKA.


Winner in the Category Best Omnichannel Solution

Boggi Milano
f.l.t.r. Mr. Ulrich Spaan (EHI), Mr. Riccardo Milani, Mr. Paolo Zanco,  Mr. Marco Benasedo

Boggi Milano launched its omnichannel strategy back in 2016. Within eight months it was able to move its e-commerce business to Commerce Cloud from Salesforce and go live with it in 15 countries. Since that time, customers have had three flexible options to choose from: click & collect, reservation in the store, or in-store ordering including delivery to a different store or their home. The marketing cloud includes social services like 1:1 email communication. The service cloud offers comprehensive customer support, which is the key to boosting brand loyalty. In 2016, online sales rose by 150% over the previous year, and 15% of digital sales transactions are now entered by employees in the store app.

duo schreib & spiel
f.l.t.r. Mr. Ulrich Spaan (EHI), Mr. Thorsten Paedelt

The duo retailer provides consumers with a seamless shopping experience, regardless of the channel or device. Consumers make contact with duo through stores, the website or social media. The boundaries between brick-and-mortar retailing, the internet and mobile shopping are disappearing. This is achieved by means of a comprehensive omnichannel concept.

  • New lighting concept
  • Electronic price labels
  • Self check-out and
  • Drop shipment

One highlight is the use of the robot Pepper as sales support for the shops. In 2016, duo schreib & spiel was able to grow faster than the markets thanks to its omnichannel strategy. The cooperative retailers’ alliance increased its sales by more than 13% over the previous year. The companies beCoding and Humanizing Technologies were responsible for implementation.

KIND Hörgeräte
f.l.t.r. Mr. Ulrich Spaan (EHI), Mr. Torsten Weber, Mr. Ralf Bußmann (Implexis)

KIND Hörgeräte, which sells hearing aids, recognised the need for digital transformation and introduced a seamless omnichannel solution with the help of implexis. The focus was on analytics and personalised customer appeal. In addition, there was an emphasis on optimisation of merchandise management, restructuring of online marketing and reorganisation of call centre processes. The main challenge in this project was to create a consistent solution along the entire customer journey, including access to e-commerce and a 360-degree view of the customer. Additional benefits arose through full integration of the website and the call centre process in Microsoft Dynamics 365. For example, interested customers can now use the website to find shops quickly, arrange appointments or ask to have their calls returned. Thanks to the implexis analytics solution, all areas of the new omnichannel strategy can be fully accessed and evaluated from mobile devices.