Coles Myer has upped its Internet presence with the announcement yesterday of more in-store kiosks provided by WA leasing company RentSmart following on the heels of the establishment of Harris Technology sites in K-Mart stores recently.
RentSmart will extend its current four in-store kiosks to 15 in Myer/Grace Brothers (MGB) stores around the nation.
Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth will join the Sydney and Melbourne pilot stores with the potential to expand even further into MGB's 60 or so locations around Australia.
The RentSmart kiosk concept that went live in early October allows customers to rent equipment by setting up a RentSmart account in MGB stores. All details are entered and processed online.
"We were initially looking at expanding in the new year but had such a good response, inquiries at our call centre increased 25 per cent, that we knew we had to get our act together sooner," explained Ned Montarello, managing director of RentSmart.
Not all MGB stores will be big enough to host a kiosk said Montarello but "by June next year we'll have very comprehensive coverage", with most stores at least displaying RentSmart marketing paraphernalia or have simple e-commerce applications available.
Coles Myer's IT reseller arm, Harris Technology, also set up kiosks this week, though with a slightly different bend. Its in-store kiosks will eventually be in K-Mart stores across the nation and will allow customers Internet access to Harris' 55,000 products, offering them the ability to pay for their purchases online.
The first store was opened in Sydney's Broadway K-Mart last week, to be followed this week by a store in Melbourne's East Burwood.
Montarello said it had "yet to be decided" whether or not RentSmart kiosks would appear alongside Harris Technology kiosks in K-Mart stores.
He was also unable to comment on whether arrangements finalised a couple of months ago with Harris where Harris customers were offered RentSmart financing options through the Harris Web site would be included in Harris's K-Mart kiosks.
However Montarello did say that RentSmart and Harris initiatives "dovetailed on a number of other things", though he was unable to give details.
Ron Harris and Montarello met last week to discuss potential strategies and "synergies" according to Montarello.