Decathlon Opens its First Store in Cambodia
Decathlon, one of the world’s largest sporting goods retailers, is taking another step to realizing its tagline—”Making Sports Accessible to the Many”—when it will officially open its first Cambodian store in Phnom Penh on August 11.
Founded in France in 1976, the retail giant currently has more than 1,300 stores and operates in over 42 countries. Decathlon’s Sen Sok branch in Aeon Mall 2 marks the company’s 17th store in Southeast Asia, and the first of many more stores the company plans to roll out in Cambodia.
Over the next 5 years, Decathlon plans to expand in Phnom Penh and then in the other cities of the country such as Siem Reap.
“We have been working in Cambodia for 7 years now, mainly to manage the production of our sport equipments with local industrial partners” says Guillaume Cutuli, CEO of Decathlon Cambodia. “Cambodian are sportsmen and women, and as the country’s economy has gotten more robust and consumers are becoming more wellness-conscious, it is the right time to invest in retail.”
Indeed, since 2011 Decathlon Cambodia has increased his production in Cambodia with partner suppliers investing with local team to manage the quality of their production as well as to guarantee the respect of their Code of Conduct and the working condition on their different partners sites.
After 7 years focusing on production in the country, the company has decided to invest in stores opening in order to “make sport more accessible in Cambodia”.
A core part of Decathlon’s operations is an investment in in-house, sport-focused products. Each of the company’s 60 internal brands represents a different sport, with a dedicated team that is responsible for the research, design, development, and testing of their product.
“We want Decathlon to become one of the most loved brands in Cambodia. Our target is to propose a very large range of sport products with an unbeatable value/price ratio to the cambodian sportsmen and women.” says Guillaume Cutuli.
The company places particular emphasis on recruiting people that share their company values: Responsibility and Vitality. “We recruit people passionate about sports, service-minded, and autonomous.” Managers at Decathlon work closely with their team, encouraging them to make decisions and take on more responsibilities. “We believe satisfied customers start with satisfied employees. Our employees are given the room to make mistakes and grow in their responsibilities.”
Decathlon Cambodia is also investing in the local ecommerce market, allowing customers to purchase goods from their website. “Our physical stores are part of our omni-channel strategy to help us interact and serve better the sport users. As consumer shopping behaviours and expectations are changing, we want to offer a seamless user experience, both in-store and online.”
Decathlon Cambodia actively supports the local community by investing in community development programs and partnering with NGOs and non-profit organizations. The company also recruits local underprivileged youth who have the opportunity to become Decathlon employees after undergoing a series of training.
Aside from the brand’s corporate responsibility initiatives, their stores are famous for the customer experience. The 2,500-square-meter store occupies the ground floor of Aeon Mall 2 in Sen Sok and stocks goods for 60 different types of sports. Aside from popular sports like football, fitness, badminton, swimming, hiking, and cycling, Decathlon will also provide products for emerging sport in Cambodia such as horse riding, kayaking or tennis.
Customers can even try out products before buying. All Decathlon stores in Cambodia will contain a large playground spanning more than 300 square meters, which will be free and accessible to all customers. Sports activities will also be organised onsite to promote healthy living and fitness for members.