Consumer electronics are 'increasingly big business' for UK's biggest retailer

Tesco steps up its game in the changing technology market

Electronics and PC sales are rising up the agenda of the country’s biggest retailer Tesco, as it looks to be at the forefront of the 3D and tablet boom in the UK.

While the supermarket has been involved in tech hardware for some time now, it sees this new wave of products as increasingly relevant to the mass market, an area in which it dominates.

“It’s quite clear from the development on our electricals business and what we’ve done there, that we have been serious about this for quite some time,” said Rob Salter, Tesco’s category director for entertainment. “It’s increasingly big business for us. The market is moving at a pace now where the process of a technology going from a high price early adopter market to mass market is seriously narrowing and narrowing. You almost have to ignore that and think about mass market from day one.”

The company, whose 2,482 strong UK portfolio dwarfs rivals, claims it is picking up business from non-techy customers that are put off by specialist retail outlets.

“I think a lot of customers are possibly intimidated by some of those environments, and it’s absolutely on pitch for us to provide that service if customers feel that way,” added Salter.

Last month, the firm announced the strategic alliance with SoftWide, which has given the retailer access to thousands of software titles. Currently it is only an online initiative, but the firm hasn’t ruled out rolling it out into physical stores.

The mammoth retailer is also planning to boost its presence in the video games market, after a strong year in the sector. “We’ve doubled our market share in both hardware and games. And we’ve invested quite heavily in resources – we’ve got a new team together, we’ve got more space, and we are moving into pre-owned games this year. A lot of it is investment in people, and we are working that market this year.”

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