TWICE On The Scene: CompUSA’s ‘Retail 2.1’ Concept Stores

By Alan Wolf On Apr 19 2010 - 4:01am

FORT MYERS, FLA. — Systemax, which acquired the CompUSA name and select locations in 2008, has been busy rebuilding the now 31-store chain — and re-inventing retail in the process.

Its “Retail 2.1” store concept features interactive, Internet-connected displays for TVs, PCs, monitors and handheld devices that provide customers with detailed product information, and even allow them to shop competitors’ Web sites.

At the same time, the system sends valuable data back to Systemax on shoppers’ in-store browsing behavior.

The concept has helped boost sales of handhelds by 40 percent in test stores, said Gilbert Fiorentino, chief executive of the Systemax technology products group, which includes CompUSA, CircuitCity. com and TigerDirect.

TWICE recently visited a 2.1 store in Fiorentino’s home base of Florida. Our impression: This definitely ain’t your father’s CompUSA.

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