Rarewaves

Brad Aspess, Rarewaves

What first led you into entertainment retailing?

Walked into the wrong interview at Decca Records and got the job. That led to a path of working in this great industry for the next four decades. I've been in the retail sector both physical and on-line since 1994.

How long have you been at Rarewaves and what’s your role?

Rarewaves is a start-up, and even though it started 11 years ago it should always have that feel. My job is to plan for where we want to be in five years time, and not obsess on the next quarter's budget goals. I try to empower the Rarewaves people to make decisions and act on them. Together in 2018 we won the Queen's Award for enterprise for which we are very proud.

What do you love about your job?

I've been lucky enough to be my own boss since I was 22. I enjoy coming to work. Every day is different and I get a real sense of achievement watching our staff learn something new everyday. Hopefully they will learn how to run their own businesses and succeed in their own right.

Describe the Rarewaves business

Rarewaves are an online retailer of mainly Entertainment products. We aim to offer as wide a range of products as possible and currently have over 750,000 active skus. We sell worldwide and delivered to 175 different countries in the last 12 months. So far we have sold product to over 15 million consumers across the globe.

What is the main challenge for the entertainment retail industry today?

Rarewaves are an online retailer of mainly Entertainment products. We aim to offer as wide a range of products as possible and currently have over 750,000 active skus. We sell worldwide and delivered to 175 different countries in the last 12 months. So far we have sold product to over 15 million consumers across the globe.

Apart from your own, what is your favourite entertainment retailer and why?

HMV are so important to the industry. The public need that face on the high street to remember entertainment. I used to buy records from great environments like Andy's and Our Price now I just go for convenience.

What was the first ever film and album you owned and where did you buy them?

Album, was Every Picture Tells a Story .. Rod Stewart bought from a record shop in Beehive Lane, Ilford. I don't remember the name of the shop, but still love the album. Film would have been in the early days of VHS. Most likely 'The Snowman' for the kids to watch and watch and watch!

What non entertainment retailer do you admire and why?

There are so many great retail models out there, but it's hard to get past the Amazon phenomenon. I admire them because they never rest, never say 'great lets keep going like this'. New innovation, new territories and always striving for the best customer experience. Difficult to live with, difficult to live without. I also like the simple style of ticketing businesses now. Expedia for ease, and Mr & Mrs Smith for personal attention.

You’re stuck in a lift, name the book, album, film, game and person that you would like to have with you.

As long as there was someone else in the lift the game would have to be 'pass the pigs'. Book anything Anthony Horowitz has just written... Film ' Some like it hot'... album currently listening to is George Ezra. Person.. Probably my dad.. we'd laugh through the whole thing.

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