Our Business Model
We design our own products
Our product range is developed in our own product department and is inspired by our Danish heritage, with a strong focus on product relevance and uniqueness. Our first graphic designer was hired in 2006 and now we have a whole in-house design department creating graphic design as well as product design in close cooperation with our Product Managers.
Our assortment includes categories ranging from home, kitchen, hobby and party to toys, electronics and gadgets, food and accessories and has a broad appeal across age and income groups. Each month the assortment is refreshed with around 300 new products divided into two product campaigns, typically adapted to seasonal themes and/or festive occasions, e.g. Valentine’s day, Back-to-School, Halloween, or Christmas.
The seasonal campaign products are complemented by our fixed assortment consisting of around 1,000 products that are relevant across seasons.
While the continuous work with product selection, innovation and development is mainly carried out internally, production is outsourced to external suppliers who commit to our Supplier Code of Conduct and our quality and ethical policies, while working under our supervision.
All products go through our product safety process, which coupled with our test programme ensures that quality and compliance requirements are met.
In order to ensure an optimal product execution in stores, we have established a cross-functional sales and operations planning process.
This process monitors the full supply chain status and alerts in due time in case of any discrepancies in targets or planning.
In 2019 we opened less stores than in previous years and focused on consolidating our store network and functions and also strengthening the backbone of our business to prepare for solid growth in the future.
Our stores are leased to minimise upfront investments and are located in high-footfall locations on high streets and in popular shopping malls. The typical size is between 150 and 250 m2 of selling space. The store appears open and light, laid out in a maze, simple to navigate, enabling the customer to seek inspiration and discover the full range of products as they go along, while the friendly, recognisable music creates a welcoming atmosphere.
Our rapid growth over the past decades is supported by a flexible and scalable supply chain model, investments in new IT infrastructure and continued strengthening of the organisation and business processes. It is a strategic imperative to continue to strengthen our backbone to cost-effectively support future growth.
The partnership model has a contractually defined exit mechanism. The partner holds put options that grant them the right to sell their non-controlling shares to Zebra in two windows annually and with a one-year notice period at redemption prices based on contractually defined EBITDA multiples. At the same time, Zebra holds call options to acquire the partner’s shareholding, which are exercisable based on contractually defined EBITDA multiples. For accounting purposes, Zebra is considered to have control over the partnerships, and they are therefore fully consolidated. The only exception is the Japanese joint venture, which is therefore not consolidated.
It is part of Zebra’s strategy to take full ownership of the local operating companies when this is assessed to be more beneficial than the partner model. Zebra operates companies in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Iceland, Southeast and Northern England, Scotland, Ireland and Northern Ireland, the Netherlands, Poland, Northern Italy, parts of France, United States, Germany as well as a large part of Spain including areas around Barcelona, Madrid, Mallorca and Valencia.
Going forward, a franchise model will be used to enter new markets.