McKinsey, a management consulting firm to many Fortune 500 businesses, is to open a retail store in an American shopping mall selling underwear, jewellery and beauty.
The store's success will depend on data, as the driver of this retail venture is to see the "effectiveness of new technology that retailers and their advisers could deploy to keep stores relevant in the age of Amazon," reports the Financial Times.
Housed in the Mall of America, Minnesota, the largest shopping mall in the U.S., McKinsey will be collating customer insights to advise its clients on the types of technologies to invest in.
Called the Modern Retail Collective, McKinsey will collect data on everything from how customers move throughout the store to the articles they touch and try on, to their purchasing decisions.
Shoppers will leave privacy concerns at the doorstep
While many visitors to the store will be unaware their every move will be analysed, McKinsey aims to discover a formula for enhancing in-store experiences and drive profits for retailers for its various clients.
The retail experiment will initially see four fashion and beauty brands participate, including jeweller Kendra Scott, type:A Deodorant, Elevé Cosmetics and ThirdLove, a lingerie brand.
Praveen Adhi, a McKinsey partner, told the Financial Times retail executives were “constantly inundated with pitches, and can struggle to figure out how to get value from all the different technologies out there. We thought it would be a great way to learn."
The Mall of America is not charging rent for the space, reports CBS news, and retailers will take home all revenue from in-store sales. This marks the largest investment in retail strategy to date for McKinsey, which says it has deployed roughly a dozen experts and a full-time team to run the immersive experience from start to finish.
While McKinsey and its clientele have plenty of budget to test and trial new retail experiences, their ethos is far from the young designer or brand looking to open their first store to sell a product designed and fueled by their creative passion, rather than a boardroom of executives who need to see growth.
Photo credit: Mall of America, courtesy