In a collaboration with national sports agency Sport Singapore (SportSG), sporting goods retailer Decathlon Singapore is preparing to open its biggest store yet.
In Stadium Boulevard in Kallang, the Decathlon Singapore Lab will pioneer the use of technology like virtual simulations and augmented reality in Asian retail. The brand’s fourth outlet will cover about 5000sqm when it opens in January.
A memorandum of understanding has been signed by Decathlon Asia chief executive Yves Claude and his SportSG counterpart Lim Teck Yin.
“Traditional retail is in trouble … customer expectations are changing very quickly,” says Claude. “They will not come just for the store’s layout.”
For example, customers trying out shoes at Decathlon Singapore Lab will be able to have foot scans.
“We want to do something different here, and that’s why we need the space. The experience will not be perfect immediately, but that’s why we are calling it a lab,” says Claude.
The store has a 15-year lease from SportSG, which owns the land, and as part of the agreement to promote participation in sport the store will also feature events and clinics for customers in its free-to-play areas, as well as an Active Health Lab. These SportSG labs provide free health screenings.
Decathlon will also continue to provide equipment and apparel to the 10 ActiveSG academies and centres throughout SIngapore. ActiveSG has more than 1.4 million members.
The French company launched into Singapore with a store at Bedok in January 2016. It now has outlets at City Square Mall and the Fairprice Hub in Joo Koon, with the three stores attracting foot traffic of two million annually.
Worldwide, the company has more than 1300 stores in more than 40 countries, up from around 1000 in 30 countries two years ago.