An Innovative Total Retail Solution for Affluent Hong Kong Millennials

In Fall 2015, Kering has partnered with my professor Dr. Jörn Bühring, my colleagues at the Hong Kong Polytechnic University School of Design, and me to design an innovation product-service solution for their brand. Our solution was selected as the winning concept and presented during the IMAGINE leadership conference held by Kering (Asia Pacific) Limited on November 12, 2015.

Client: Kering
Date: 2015
Services: Service Design


Kering is a Group of high-profile, international apparel and accessory brands. Their mission is to help customers look and feel good while making a positive contribution to people and the planet. Like many other companies who own luxury retail brands that are operating in Hong Kong, Kering enjoyed a period of growth in profits as Hong Kong saw an influx of affluent tourists, mostly from Mainland China, who demanded for large amounts of luxury products. Some experts said Mainland tourists account for as much as 40% of all retail sales in years prior to 2015.

However, due to social-economic factors Hong Kong saw a drop in its retail sector. President of Kering (Asia Pacific) Limited, Mr. Carlo Imo has also admitted that the previous surge in sales had its negative side. Many sophisticated consumers now associate many sought after luxury brands as merely “handbag selling machines.”

Consumers are seeking more than just products – they are looking for brand engagement and stimulating retail experiences. This is of particular importance in the luxury retail segment where both brand and customer are engaging in experiential environments and services.

The brief is to come up with a concept of an innovative product-service solution that could help Kering find new business.

Research & Ideation

The team researched and analysed into the different recent drivers for change in Hong Kong in order to accurately identify the different Product and Service Opportunity Gaps. Furthermore, we have identified that affluent Hong Kong millennials is a group of consumers that is widely underserved by traditional luxury brands.

As a result of our research, three focuses emerged for the ideation of our solution — reward system, integrating luxury products with travel, and the co-creation of collective memory. This then led to creation of our product & value opportunity statement:

To design an innovative total retail solution that will integrate travel, social media and personalised reward to enhance customer engagement with the brand and build brand loyalty among Hong Kong’s affluent millennials.

To come up with a concept that is both high in style and high in technology, the team researched and analysed into existing products that closely align with our three points of ideation.

Final Concept

Finally, we devised our winning concept and called it Luxury+ — an innovative product-service system that embeds an RFID tag in each product a luxury brand sells. Whenever a customer purchases a product it can then be registered into their mobile device using an app. The app then tracks the distances that the customer travels with the product and rewards the customer with mileage points. These mileage points can in turn be used to exchange for an experience or discounts at the store.

Luxury+ transforms each luxury product into a passport for entering into a luxurious travel experience.