TOSHIBA TEC Corporation

Seasonal Retailer Calendar Club, installs Toshiba's latest compact integrated POS solution the ST-C10, supplied by Southern Retail Systems

Calendar Club, established on the high street in 1998, has selected the Toshiba 'allin-one' ST-C10, with its small footprint, integrated printer and fanless design, as an ideal fit for its high street stores and shopping mall outlets.

Opening over 300 stores across the UK and Ireland on a yearly basis, Calendar Club has a strong retail presence. As a seasonal retailer trading only from September until January, Calendar Club operates a very unique business model.

With a limited high street opening period, it is essential that stores are up and running within a very short time scale, and that the POS solution is reliable and fast, allowing staff to serve customers as quickly as possible. “Once the site location is secured, the store needs to be fitted, merchandised and the tills up and running within 48 hours, for trading to commence,”said Gareth Wynn, Technical Analyst for Calendar Club. “With only one or two tills per store, it is critical that we have a reliable, robust and easy to use solution that our self-employed store operators can operate immediately.”

Calendar Club has a mix of outlets, from high street stores to smaller open shopping mall trading areas. The versatile ST-C10 is a perfect fit for this diverse range of store formats, guaranteed to fit in any environment where space is at a premium ? it is an all-in-one business solution with integrated printer, receipt auto-cut and easy media loading.

The option of an integrated battery also offers Calendar Club the flexibility to look at retail sites where power is not available - sites that previously would not have been considered by the retailer.

As well as the seasonal retail outlets, Calendar Club stocks additional products on the web as well as the full range stocked in store. The touch-screen ST-C10 allows store staff to access the website from the till, and provide advice to customers should a product not be available in store. “Being able to access the website from the till is a really useful tool for helping customers in-store. I can simply check stock and provide customers with a free delivery coupon, so they can order online at home and avoid post and packaging costs,” said Sian James, self-employed operator at Gloucester Quays Shopping Centre. “The unique flip-up screen also allows us to show the customers the product quickly and conveniently which is critical in busy periods when we have queues at the till.”

Calendar Club use a mix of Toshiba terminals across its estate, replacing the previous legacy cash registers. These all-in-one tills now provide the business with essential real-time sales information on a store level basis. Reports show basket analysis, results of promotions, top titles per store, what titles people are buying together, which enables Calendar Club to plan stock effectively for individual sites, regardless of size.

The success of Calendar Club is due to planning and organisation prior to store opening. ”Although Calendar Club only has a seasonal presence on the high street, it is very important that our stores do not have the appearance of a ‘temporary’ operation,” commented Steve Jones, National Retail Manager for Calendar Club. “A great deal of planning goes into the merchandising and aesthetics of the stores, resulting in a high quality, organised look, with a strong brand presence. The same applies to the technology. We need to know that we can ship the Toshiba tills to the store and they will be networked, up and running, ready to open, without any issues.”

Calendar Club has recently diversified its product range to include puzzles and they plan to bring the web and retail operation closer together in the future for a truly multi-channel operation. “With the help of the Toshiba terminals, we are working towards a future-proofed solution to develop with the needs of the business. Southern Retail Systems understood the requirements of our retail operation and offered the best product for us in the marketplace. I would recommend these robust and reliable tills to other retailers,” concluded Gareth.