Flying Tiger Copenhagen, which until its recent name change was called ‘Tiger’, is one of the top 10 fastest growing retailers in the UK and their success begs the question: is the face of value retailing changing? And if so, what’s driving this change?

We believe their success lies in having a modern, IKEA-esque environment, which encourages browsing and impulse purchases, together with its three main product categories seeing market-wide growth:

Fast-homewares
In recent years the likes of H&M Home and HEMA have driven fashion-led ‘fast homewares’. This is linked to both the increasing popularity of social media platforms, where inspiration and ideas are easily accessible, and a millennial generation that sees home ownership as increasingly unattainable. This market has served a group of consumers that do not want to invest in premium homewares, but still want to make a mark on their homes. It has created demand for renters to make seasonal, affordable updates to their décor, making businesses like Flying Tiger prime shopping destinations due to their frequent rotation of on-trend, reasonably-priced products.
Gifting
Value retail has appealed to a broader demographic since the recession, from grocery to fashion, and now gifting. Flying Tiger has benefited from ‘top-up’ gifting: whether for stocking fillers and ‘Secret Santa’, or small, quirky and fun gifts for friends or children, the retailer fills a gap in the market as a value alternative to more expensive players such as Joy, Oliver Bonas and Urban Outfitters.

Stationery
Stationery has become a growth engine for the UK high street, driven by retailers who have resonated with younger consumers. These brands have used retail theatre and product innovation to transform a sector, evidenced by the impressive growth of category specialists Smiggle, Tinc and kikki.K.

Flying Tiger has been flexible, dynamic and reactive to consumer habits, and its clean and stylish environment echoes that of its Scandinavian cousin IKEA. Importantly, it also appeals to a wide socio-economic consumer base. These factors have helped it fill the hole in the high street created by the loss of businesses like Woolworths. Furthermore, the launch of a Flying Tiger concession in Selfridges is an indication of the changing perception of value products when presented in a desirable environment.

Aakash Patel