News 29.05.2023

Need to Know

The Roundhouse will train 15,000 young people in the creative industries, a $10,000 hotel stay for dogs and why Gen Z think they won’t have to shop thanks to AI.

London’s Roundhouse launches space for young creatives

Roundhouse Works, UK

UK — North London arts venue Roundhouse is launching Roundhouse Works, a creative centre for young people.

The fully accessible space will open on 19 June 2023 within the historic grounds of the Roundhouse. The project aims to support 15,000 creative freelancers aged 18–30 annually. It will focus on offering its services to those from disadvantaged backgrounds and young people who lack the finances to pursue a creative career.

Roundhouse Works will offer various membership options, giving access to work and studio space. Help with childcare and travel costs will also be available. Career support will be provided through the venue’s Self Made Series, which will include free workshops, one-to-one mentoring, industry professional talks and networking events.

Membership starts at £25 ($31, €29) a year and co-working packages from £30 ($37, €34) per month.

Roundhouse Works is Neo-collectivism in action. The project was made possible by £8m ($9.9m, €9.2m) in funding from philanthropists, charitable foundations and corporate donations.

Strategic opportunity

Invest early in diverse talent. Doing so is not only a social good but will also allow your business to benefit from a broader range of perspectives, experiences and ideas – leading to new forms of creativity, innovation and problem-solving

WOW Burger is Asia’s first vertically integrated fast food concept restaurant

WOW Burger, Hong Kong WOW Burger, Hong Kong
WOW Burger, Hong Kong WOW Burger, Hong Kong

Hong Kong – WOW Burger is ushering in a new era of vegetarianism in Asia’s fast food market with its creative and future-thinking plant-based concept restaurant. Making its debut at Basehall in Jardine House, Hong Kong, WOW Burger offers inclusive, vegetarian comfort food at an affordable price.

The brainchild of entrepreneurs Zacki Hamid, Suni Datwani and Jason Girard, the eatery aims to create a satisfying meal while pointing meat-lovers towards plant-based options. Its vision is to craft a fast food experience that doesn’t sacrifice taste, quality and nutrition. WOW Burger patties are packed with over 20g of plant-based protein, with menu options ranging from WOW cheeseburger to WOW chick’n and WOW truffle burger.

In our Asia’s Alternative Protein Market report, we revealed how rising health concerns and curiosity about new tastes have resulted in innovation across Asia’s substitute protein market. Hong Kong is an important entry point for businesses launching new products, as shown by its role in bringing Beyond Meat’s vegan burgers and Just Egg to the market.

Strategic opportunity

Understanding regional differences in alternative eating lifestyles is essential in servicing clients effectively – many Asian consumers have turned to plant-based meat for its nutritional benefits rather than for environmental reasons, for example

The Nines Hotel Portland introduces $10,000 overnight package for dogs

US – Self-defined luxury collection hotel The Nines in Portland is eyeing pet owners with its new Spring Bark package. With a starting price of £8,090 ($10,000, €9,320), the package will include transport to and from Portland International Airport, one night in the Nines Suite and various services dedicated to the dog customer.

On arrival, the pet will receive a monogrammed bed, two chew toys and a robe, followed by a personalised and hand-made welcome treat from the barkery specialist Hip Hound Shop. The pet and its owner will later attend a photoshoot – one photo will be turned into a hand-painted oil portrait.

A four-course meal curated by the hotel’s executive chef will be served to the human and their dog via room service before a professional dog walker takes the lucky pet on an ‘outdoor excursion’. A proportion of the proceeds from the luxury package will be donated to The Pixie Project charity, which helps to rescue pets in the greater Portland area.

In Pet Hospitality, we highlighted how demand for similar high-end services dedicated to pets and animal-friendly spaces would rise following the pandemic pet boom.

The Nines Pet Package, US

Strategic opportunity

Hoteliers must consider the building, material and design specifications needed to create a positive experience for owners and their pets, while ensuring spaces and services feel luxurious and welcoming

Stat: The next generation of consumers expect retailers to harness tech innovation

Modular Mailbox by Klarna, Sweden Modular Mailbox by Klarna, Sweden

US – What is consumers’ stance on retailers embedding AI into shopping experiences? New research suggests that consumers not only accept but also expect retailers to enrich and personalise the online and real-life stores of tomorrow.

Buy-now, pay-later service Klarna polled over 5,000 consumers globally in April 2023 to gauge the future shopping habits of Generation Z and Millennials in 18 years, when Gen Z will be in their 40s and represent the main consumer group. Findings reveal that despite favouring real-life shopping over virtual reality, the next generation of consumers wants tech innovation to enhance commerce. Eight in 10 (81%) of Gen Z and Millennials expect to see AR elevating in-store experiences and 37% believe this will become the norm.

With 65% of consumers stating that more personalisation is crucial to their purchase intent, the report also makes the case for retailers embracing AI to supercharge product discovery. ‘The next generation of consumers will expect a highly personalised shopping experience where products find them instead of the other way around,’ adds David Sandström, chief marketing officer at Klarna.

Strategic opportunity

Retailers need to adapt their tech strategies to win over younger consumers. Integrating AI personalisation into the shopping journey is a good place to start enhancing personal recommendations at scale

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