Ibtikar, which means innovation in Arabic, is Chalhoub Group's internal innovation lab designed to foster intrapreneurship within the Group. It provides a unique opportunity for employees to experiment and test ideas with dedicated time, funding and mentorship. The program runs twice a year with up-to three big business ideas per cohort. Everyday entrepreneurship is encouraged. The idea is to empower employees to take initiative in smalls ways or create significant impacts which deliver Quick Wins. One of the projects being funded is ‘Wear That’ - a personal styling service offering a complimentary styling session and a box of selected clothes. By building a database of style preferences, Wear That will be able to recommend items of continuously greater accuracy, further enhancing our customer experience. Since its launch, $35,000 of sales have been generated, selling more than 280 units with over 60 styling boxes and 33% repeat customers.
In 2018, we received 61 idea submissions, of which five are in the process of funding and mentoring. Twenty-nine of those ideas have been categorised as Quick Wins. A wide range of projects have been supported including one focused on optimising the visual merchandising department by centralising the process for marketing teams across the Group. This is done by ensuring reduced rates, controlling quality and project-supplier compatibility while adhering to brand standards.