Entering the future: Interactive, informative and entertaining, outlet will be rolled-out across all operations
Zain, the leading telecom provider across the Middle East and Africa, announces the opening of its flagship store in Bahrain. Interactive, informative and entertaining, and utilizing the latest in digital technology, the 350 square-meter, state-of-the-art outlet will change the way we shop for telecom products and services. The store will be eventually linked to a network of similar outlets across Zain’s Middle East and Africa operations.
Located in one of Bahrain’s largest malls (Seef), the Zain store – the first of its kind anywhere in the world – was officially opened in a spectacular ceremony attended by Zain Group CEO Dr Saad Al Barrak, Zain Bahrain GM Mohammed Zainalabedin, His Excellency Shaikh Ahmed Bin Ateyatallah Al Khalifa, Bahrain Minister of Cabinet Affairs & Minister assigned for Telecommunications Sector and many other dignitaries.
“This store of the future sets the tone for what a retail telecommunications environment should be in the 21st century,” declared Dr Al Barrak. “Our brand is young and that’s exactly the approach we have taken in designing this, our flagship shop. It combines and reflects Zain’s core values of radiance, heart and belonging in a revolutionary, appealing and fun environment that allows customers to experience Zain’s ‘wonderful world’.”
The store demonstrates how digital technology can take the retail experience to new heights, featuring progressive technologies, such as motion sensor screens that change imagery when customers walk by, and “lift triggers” that display product information when customers pick up mobile devices. There is also a 65” LCD Welcome Wall, multiple LCD and LED installations and world-class customer service centers.
“Like Zain’s ‘One Network’, the world’s first borderless mobile service, our ambition was to create something that would inspire and be copied by other global telecom operators,” said Dr Al Barrak.
The flagship store was the result of a collaboration that saw Zain partner with FutureBrand, a brand consultancy firm and R/GA, a digital advertising agency. R/GA created the entire digital in-store experience, along with proprietary technologies and digital designs, while FutureBrand was responsible for the store’s overall concept and design. Both agencies are part of the Interpublic Group (IPG), one of the world’s largest advertising and marketing services organizations.
“We wanted to create a retail environment unlike any other in the world, an environment that’s entirely focused on the ultimate customer experience,” said Tito Alai, Zain Group Chief Commercial Officer and architect of the Zain brand. “Zain’s flagship store invites people to explore our products and services in a retail space that’s interactive, informative and entertaining.”
The store is totally customer friendly. Whether one is a corporate customer seeking a cost-effective telecom solution with one of the shop’s on-site consultants or simply a modern mobile phone seeking the latest accessories, customers can browse with the help of high-tech interactive displays and even grab a coffee while they are doing it.
“Zain Bahrain is proud to launch the first among many stores to rolled out among our 22 operations,” said Zain Bahrain GM Mohammed Zainalabedin. “We have a great tradition of bringing exciting new concepts to the market, either as products and services or as part of a new retail experience. Our Experience Shops changed telecom retail in Bahrain when they were introduced in 2003, and here we are again, raising the bar in delivering new and exciting innovations and technology.”
More about the store
Digital Signage: A 65” LCD Welcome Wall outside the store promotes Zain’s products. In addition, multiple, smaller screens are displayed in key areas throughout the store.
“Brand Spine”: A massive installation in the center of the store combining 14 large LCD displays and text LED. Visitors can send SMS messages to the sign and watch as synchronized brand images, ambient signage and dynamic text move across the LCD displays.
Customer Queue: Alleviating the need to wait in line, customers can check-in at a touch-screen display where they will receive a ticket or SMS message alerting them when a representative is available, while queue indicators throughout the store lets customers know their place in line.
Value-Added Service Touch Displays: There are ten 42” interactive displays throughout the store, each describing a different Zain product or service. Touch-screens allow customers to find out more information.
Promo Wall: A 16-screen motion tracking video wall detects customers walking by and follows their movements with swirling, vibrant motion graphics, while four mobile devices in front of the display provide information to customers when lifted from their docking stations.
Zain Create: Customers can customize their mobile devices with Zain phone overlays, beads and other accessories. A touch-screen tool allows them to select from available phone skins and other products, all applied on the spot by a Zain specialist.
Multi Language: A custom-built rendering engine in Flash to show specialized Zain Arabic fonts, allowing customers to read all digital communications in either Arabic or English.
Zain is a leading emerging markets player in the field of telecommunications aiming to become one of the top ten mobile operators in the world by 2011. Today it is the 4th largest mobile network in the world in terms of geographic presence with a footprint in 23 countries spread across the Middle East and Africa providing mobile voice and data services to 63.5 million active customers (as at 31 December 2008).
Zain operates in the following countries: Bahrain, Burkina Faso, Chad, the Republic of the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Ghana, Iraq, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Malawi, Madagascar, Niger, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia. In Lebanon, the company manages the network on behalf of the government operating as mtc-touch. In Morocco, Zain in a joint venture owns 31% of Wana Telecom.
The company offers innovative services in its markets such as One Network, the world’s first borderless mobile telecommunication network enabling customers to receive and make calls throughout many countries in Africa and the Middle East at free or local rates.
The Zain brand is wholly owned by Mobile Telecommunications Company KSC, which is listed on the Kuwait Stock Exchange (Stock ticker: ZAIN). Zain is listed in the Financial Times’ Global 500 Index which ranks the world’s largest companies based on market capitalization (http://www.ft.com/reports/ft5002008 ).
For more, please visit www.zain.com or email [email protected]