Interview

Exclusive interview with Thomas Ficht, myToys Group, on what shapes the German retail market

Wednesday 13 February 2019 10:30 CET | Interview

We interviewed Thomas Ficht, Head of Payment at myToys Group, to find out more about the retail market in Germany 

What is the story behind myToys and what is its value proposition on the market?

myToys is celebrating its 20th birthday this year. Two of our founders are still CEOs and have led myToys to become what it is today - the largest German ecommerce merchant focusing on toys and family goods. By adding mirapodo.de and yomonda.de, we have pivoted from being a mere toy merchant to offer a broader product range to young families. Our customers value our expertise and we have generated a thorough customer base over the years. We are also a part of Otto Group, one of the worlds biggest commerce players, which is based in Germany, and operates internationally.

What has changed in the German retail market in the last 5 years and what should we expect for the near future?

Massively growing marketplaces have required thorough strategies for all ecommerce merchants in Germany in the last years. It seems that this growth is slightly decreasing so I believe that the future will be about seamless and streamlined checkout processes, not just in Germany, but also all over the world.

What makes your company stand out when it comes to acquiring new customers and converting them into returning ones? What is the biggest challenge in keeping up with the constantly evolving and demanding customer needs?

myToys’ mission is to make families happy. Many of our customers start their journey with us when they decide or find that they are going to have kids.

We are very happy to have many returning customers as we offer everything kids need from the early stages to when they grow up. In addition to kid apparel and toys, myToys Group offers shoes and home décor items, which are usually interesting products for our primarily female target group.

We offer open invoice as a payment method. Our customers can easily call our customer service; in only one parcel, our customers receive their orders from all of our online shops: myToys.de, mirapodo.de, and yomonda.de. This process saves our customers shipping costs and is one of the strategies that helps us convert and retain customers.

What are your main concerns when it comes to PSD2 and SCA requirements?

Our processes have been fully compliant with the German legislation in the past - GDPR did therefore not have such a big effect on our processes at myToys. In general, legislation has to find a way to meet the data privacy concerns of the customers and ensure that any ecommerce business is still possible.

You will be a speaker at Ecommerce Berlin Expo this February. What topics do you plan to tackle while being there and what panels are you most interested in?

I had the pleasure to participate in a couple of Ecommerce Berlin Expo editions. I feel that the audience is different and more international than in many other conferences. I will focus on payment and checkout related topics and panels.

In my presentation, “Making families happy - taking the pain out of paying”, I will explain how myToys ensures that shopping carts full of gifts are not only packed but also paid. I will go into detail on how myToys is streamlining its payment procedures to make families and the myToys CFO happy.

In 2019, Ecommerce Berlin Expo will take place for the fourth time. With more than 10000 visitors and 300 exhibitors, the event has hosted notable companies in the past, such as Google, Samsung, Alibaba, Zalando, Facebook, DHL, and LOreal. The event will be held in the heart of Berlin on February 20, 2019 at STATION Berlin.

About Thomas Ficht

Thomas studied law in Berlin, Alicante, and Sydney. As a lawyer, he worked in Santiago de Chile, Cologne, and Berlin. His ecommerce career started in 2011 at Zalando, where he specialized in payments. While working as Director of Payment at Epic Companies, he set up payment for various online shops. From 2014 to 2017, Thomas introduced and managed idealo Direktkauf at idealo. Since February 2018, he is in charge of payment, risk, and receivables (online and offline) at myToys Group.

About myToys Group

With over 2.000 employees and 7 million customers, the Berlin-based myToys is one of the largest ecommerce businesses in Germany and also a member of the Otto Group. Our multi-shop concept focuses on in-house solutions and developments in all areas – starting with IT and ranging to purchasing, marketing, and customer services, through to our logistics team. The myToys Group includes the brands myToys, an online shop for childrens products with 17 branches, mirapodo, one of the biggest online shoe shops in Germany and yomonda, the interior shop for home and living products. Our portfolio is also strengthened by the inclusion of limango, a European private shopping community for families.


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Keywords: Thomas Ficht, myToys Group, Germany, retail, PSD2, SCA, payment method, customer experience, marketplace, Otto Group, payments, invoice, Ecommerce Berlin Expo
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Countries: World