The Art File is putting the finishing touches to Jigsaw, a planning and facilitation alternative for retailers looking to stock leading British card publishers’ designs.
“This is most definitely not brokerage,” emphasises Ged Mace, managing director of The Art File who is fronting the new service. “Jigsaw has been conceived in response to request from both retailers and fellow publishers for an alternative way of bringing a potent mix of the best of British design to the consumer,” he adds.
Some 15 leading greeting card publishers have pledged their support for the new venture, including Five Dollar Shake, Belly Button Design, Paper Salad, Rachel Ellen and of course The Art File, among others. Retailers have the opportunity of working with the Jigsaw planning team to curate a selection which works for them.
Experienced industry exec, Mark Goshawk (who spent many years at UKG) has been working with Ged to set up Jigsaw since last summer.
Ged and Mark foresee the Jigsaw option as likely to appeal especially to independent department stores, lifestyle stores and small groups of up to 10 stores for whom greeting cards are not their main product, but are important nonetheless.
As Ged says: “Jigsaw really can help to safeguard a strong greeting card presence in significant retailers, by championing the best of British design.” Elaborating, Ged says: “The danger is that if greeting cards are not the main focus of a store that they could be replaced by a totally different product area. We believe by offering a great selection and an easy fulfilment solution for retailers greeting cards will more than protect their space, they will act as a beacon for the store.”
The stock for Jigsaw displays is to be dispatched from 2WL, the Mansfield-based operation that looks after the fulfillment of The Art File’s products as well as those of other publishers.
“We will receive weekly orders from the retailers and publishers will then deliver into 2WL where they will be collated and dispatched. There is no need for a hefty stock-holding and publishers new designs can be feed in as and when to maintain a totally fresh offer,” assures Ged.
As he points out: “It is all about be flexible and perpetuating greeting cards’ presence at retail be it through ordering direct, being supplied by brokerage or by a planning solution, such as we are offering with Jigsaw.”
Ged confirmed that three or four retailers are on the verge of committing to Jigsaw with more in the pipeline.
Top: (right-left) The Art File’s Ged, Karen and James Mace on their stand at Top Drawer.