Harper Dennis Hobbs to launch Metaverse consultancy for retailers


Harper Dennis Hobbs (HDH) has announced plans to become the first strategic retail consultant in the UK to provide consultancy for retailers looking to expand into the metaverse.

HDH, which is part of Newmark Group, Inc., plans to launch a new arm of its retail division that will be focussed on how retailers can best operate in Web 3.0 – the third generation of the internet which uses a machine-based understanding of data to provide a data-driven environment. HDH consultants will provide retailers with advice on what platform is best for their products and strategy, and on the look and functionality of their virtual stores.

The metaverse refers to a virtual-reality space where users can interact with one another, as well as with products and brands. There are already a number of ‘worlds’ running, including Decentraland, a virtual destination for digital assets, and The Sandbox, a virtual metaverse game where players can build, own and monetize their virtual experiences. 

The metaverse continues to grow in prominence as many high-profile brands adopt and announce plans to expand into it. This includes Facebook, which last year rebranded to Meta, while the likes of Walmart and legacy brands including Ralph Lauren, have signaled their intent to sell products on Web 3.0. 

HDH has over 30 years of experience in assisting retailers with location strategy and introducing and establishing retail brands into new markets. James Ebel, Chief Executive Officer of HDH, believes its insights and understanding of retail can help brands make the right investments in the metaverse: 

“The pandemic has played a role in encouraging retailers to embrace change and look to adopt new methods for growing sales and brand awareness,” says Ebel. “This has led to many more retailers considering creating a presence in the metaverse and there are even some ‘early adopters’.

“As retail consultants, traditionally our services have come in the form of securing physical locations for retailers. However, ingrained within that is our understanding of what works for a brand, its strategy and its products and how a particular location can best help the brand achieve its growth targets.

“Using this knowledge, HDH plans to support retailers in adopting the right space in the metaverse and understanding what will resonate with and attract users, to ensure consumers engage with their brand in the virtual world.”

Ebel concludes: “This is a completely new channel for retailers, like websites and social media once were, and there is clearly an appetite for retailers to find ways to monetise the metaverse and ensure continued business growth in an increasingly online world.”

Add a Comment

No messages on this article yet

Editorial: +44 (0)1892 536363
Publisher: +44 (0)208 440 0372
Subscribe FREE to the weekly E-newsletter