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Promoting sales and improving energy efficiency 
 
Aesthetic taste changes in the course of time, as do available technologies. This also applies to the design of supermarkets and hypermarkets. With its store design 2010, Migros, the largest retailer in Switzerland, is in keeping with the spirit of the times. The increased sales in its modernised stores confirm the results of neural studies carried out in advance to determine what criteria have a positive effect on consumer behaviour. In addition to the colour scheme, an important factor is the question of sustainability. Whereas its design guidelines – adjusted in each case to the space available – apply to all the cooperative association’s stores in Switzerland, the technical fittings are the responsibility of each of the ten individual regional cooperatives.  
 
Migros Basel, which operates approximately 60 hypermarkets mainly in the Basel City, Baselland and Jura cantons, has the newest store network in the Migros association. As a result of the revitalisation concept started three years ago, the average age of its sales outlets has been reduced from about 14.5 to 8.5 years. The key to success, according to Managing Director Stefano Patrigani, is for store designs to be modern and customer-friendly, to cater for contemporary shopping requirements, and to satisfy demands for sustainability.  
 
A store with a difference 
At the beginning of 2015, the Juniors Market in Grenzbacherstrasse in Basel city centre was also given a “facelift”. This local Migros market has a number of special features: Firstly, it has a sales area of only 600 m2, which is approximately one-third smaller than usual for such Migros supermarkets. This makes it a challenge to present the wide range of goods in an attractive manner.  
 
The staffing structure is also different from that of a “normal” Migros store, which generally consists of a store manager, a number of employees and one or two trainees: In the Juniors Market, on the other hand, seven youngsters – led by store manager Sabrina Beck – take care of merchandise management, customer complaints, cash management, etc. from the first day of their training. The objective of this ambitious project, which was initiated in 1998, is to turn trainees in their first and second years into forward-thinking young business people with good career prospects. Nevertheless, the aims are still the same as those of any other store, i.e. the whole team must perform really well – an challenge for Sabrina Beck. The satisfactory figures show that this approach works. It is also evident that, compared to trainees in other stores, those at Juniors Market are more independent, know more, and are better able to think and act in a business-oriented manner.  
 
Martin Rutschmann, Deputy Head of Technology at Migros Basel, who was responsible for the redesign in accordance with store design concept 2010, says that the store is even better since its refurbishment and modernisation in February 2015 and that the new atmosphere has proved extremely popular with customers. The fact that customers spend longer in the store and purchase more, clearly shows this to be the case. 
 
The interior of Juniors Market provides a pleasant spatial impression. In the checkout area, the Migros-orange wooden lamellas with integrated Lux Longus LED luminaires stand out against the ceilings, which are now open and painted anthracite, creating a visual highlight. As before, the walls are an attractive shade of yellow. 
 
The energy efficiency of the store has been substantially improved to meet the certified Minergie standard. A CO2 air conditioning/refrigeration system has been installed, which requires approximately 30 % less energy than conventional systems. There are also self-service refrigeration units with glass covers – a relatively new solution in Switzerland and one in which Migros Basel is a pioneer. These emit less cold air into the store. The new lighting solution also promises to be more energy-efficient. As Hanspeter Wüthrich, Head of Technology, explained, Migros Basel’s defined objective is to use LED luminaires as far as possible. Due to their low heat generation, these have clear benefits in food stores and supermarkets because they allow the output of refrigerator systems to be kept to a minimum.  
 
A real challenge 
A very rapid response was necessary to get the lighting installed in time. From the first enquiry (as to what a lighting solution might look like) and the placing of the order, there were only five weeks until the delivery of the track system with LED downlights and project-specific linear LED luminaires. According to Kai K. Wiegelmann, owner ((??)) of Elpro Lichttechnik, the “just-in-time” development of the luminaire, including toolmaking, and production is based on the Linear-Flat-System from BJB. This innovative lamp-lampholder system proved to be ideal for this project: It is visually appealing and forms a homogeneous entity with the luminaire. In addition, easy handling, modular design and flexibility offer the possibility of using another colour temperature in the future or changing to the next, brighter generation of LED light source with an even higher system efficiency. 
 
The rapid execution of the project shows the advantage of medium-sized, family-run businesses with short decision-making processes. This applies equally to Elpro and to BJB, which both have their headquarters in Arnsberg and share a similar way of thinking. Due to the long-standing cooperation between the two companies, it was possible to carry out speedy optimisation work on the Linear-Flat-System, which was first exhibited at Light+Building 2014. User feedback will also be integrated into the continuing product development process according to BJB Area Sales Manager Michael Scholz. 
 
In terms of form, the track system in combination with the Lux Longus linear luminaires developed specifically for this project and the rotatable and tiltable Ernie 110 LED downlights looks very aesthetically pleasing. For Kai K. Wiegelmann, the decision to have a 3-phase track system is a customer orientation consideration as it means that systems from other manufacturers can be used. It also provides an incentive for Elpro to supply high-quality products with a good design as well as an appropriate level of service. 
 
Value-added objective 
An essential factor when deciding on a lighting system is the overall cost calculation throughout its lifetime, i.e. investment and operating costs, including both energy consumption and maintenance costs. In this respect, the combination of Lux Longus luminaires with the Linear-Flat-System as LED light source and the Ernie 110 LED downlights produces positive results. Migros Basel attaches great importance to high-quality light with a colour temperature of 3,000 K, which it sees as a sales promotion instrument. The resultant pleasant atmosphere created in combination with store design concept 2010 has a positive influence on customer behaviour and – according to Hanspeter Wüthrich – induces customers to spend longer in the store and purchase more. This is also noticeable in Juniors Market, which has already seen an increase in sales in the short time since receiving its facelift. The well thought-out design is also an important element in positive customer assessments and has contributed to the numerous awards which Migros as a brand has received for its stores and for its sustainability strategy: Migros has the best reputation of the top 52 Swiss companies; the factors assessed included image, familiarity, quality, innovation, emotional aspects and sustainability. In January 2015, the independent rating agency Oekom Research AG in Munich designated Migros the most sustainable retailer in the world. Also in 2015, within the framework of the Brand Predictor study carried out on behalf of the advertising agency Havas Worldwide Switzerland, Migros was named the most popular brand in Switzerland.  
 
The argument for modular design  
With the Linear-Flat-System, BJB decided on the “classical configuration” which offers the familiar flexibility of conventional luminaires and supports so-called “late stage finishing”. For this purpose, the system consists of a “lamp”, a lampholder and a support element. The light source, which is actually only 37 mm wide, consists of an extruded aluminium profile with LED module and a diffusing PMMA cover. The Linear-Flat-System, which is available in lengths of 580 mm and 1168 mm and has an overall height of only 13 mm, is suitable for a variety of applications. In the shorter model, versions with 3,000 K and 4,000 K colour temperature achieve 1,100 lm and 1,150 lm of luminous flux respectively and, with double the number of LED light points, 1,950 lm and 2,050 lm respectively. The longer version, with luminous flux values almost twice as high, achieves a module efficiency of up to 128 lm/W at a colour temperature of 4,000 K.  
With “late stage finishing”, the user always receives a luminaire with the latest lighting specifications. In addition, no tools are required for installation, making the system convenient to handle and easy to maintain. 
 
The lighting solution based on the track system with Ernie 110 LED downlights and Lux Longus project-specific LED luminaires has passed its first major test. Now it is a question of gathering and evaluating experience over a prolonged period, before possibly transferring the concept to other Migros Basel stores.  
 
Ursula Sandner