SMCP takes innovative approach to retailer training with ‘Retail Lab’

Premium fashion retailer SMCP has launched an interesting idea to train fashion fans to be fashion retailers. It has welcomed the first class of its SMCP Retail Lab academy, in partnership with EMA SUP Paris and Institut Français de la Mode (the Paris Fashion School).


The owner of Sandro, Maje, Claudie Pierlot and Fursac said Retail Lab is a school “delivering certified training to students enabling them to become the sales advisor of tomorrow”. 

Its first class comprises 20 students form all backgrounds with the only selection criteria being “the candidates’ motivation and interest in fashion”. 

SMCP launched “an innovative, modern and inclusive admission campaign” for it on social networks Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok, and on different channels such as Spotify, Indeed, LinkedIn, and others. 

And in an unusual move, no CV or level of experience were required from the candidates, who had to answer a series of questions on video to express their desire to apply for the programme. The “most motivated among them were invited to attend a selection event in the Maje showroom around fun workshops”.

The idea was born during a hackathon around the theme ‘Challenges of Retail’ organised in November 2021. 

The company said it’s a “key project” that’s supported by the founders of Sandro and Maje, Evelyne Chetrite and Judith Milgrom, and by group CEO Isabelle Guichot.

Guichot said the firm encourages its teams “to think outside the box and develop their entrepreneurial spirit. The birth of our academy is a perfect illustration of our passion and our entrepreneurial spirit that enable us to face the challenges of our market.” 

The lab is offering “an innovative and certifying omnichannel training course for sales advisors”. The course takes place over a year in the form of work-study programmes offered within its four brands. 

It’s based on a customised omnichannel training course in sales consultancy run by EMA SUP Paris. Institut Français de la Mode (the Paris Fashion School) will also host several days on fashion culture and the new challenges of Sustainability. And SMCP will be responsible for educating students throughout the year about the brands, their DNA, and their functioning.

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