Our Story

We are retail enthusiasts who travel the globe in search of the new and the innovative. Based in London and Paris, but always on the move, we can be found pounding the shopping streets of the world with camera in hand, tracking trends on the ground. We help our clients improve their businesses by showing them what great retail looks like.


Why we exist

Retail is the lifeblood of the global economy. It really matters. It’s what shapes our towns and cities and brings communities to life. Under ever greater threat from online, traditional shops are having to evolve to cope. Post pandemic, physical retail has bounced back and the pace of change is faster than ever.

Retailers need to keep on top of what’s happening around the world. Our clients are hungry for knowledge but are often too busy running their businesses to look at the big picture.

We created Echochamber back in 1998 to do just that: to feed our clients with information and inspiration, so that they can understand the fast changing evolution of retail and plan for the future.

We believe passionately in the power of design. We don’t design stores ourselves, but we use our retail trends to help you build better stores and experiences. We watch as customer attitudes shift and we show you how brands are responding. Our job is to excite you with endless possibilities for your business. We can kick start a project or work with you to deliver it. We are champions of retail design and can recommend the world’s most creative agencies. Most importantly, we help make our clients world class, because quite simply, we benchmark them against the very best on the planet.

How we can help

Retail Safaris

We have been running Retail Safaris around the world for more than 20 years. With many companies working hybrid remotely post pandemic, retail safaris are a great way to get your team together for a physical trip to the world’s be inspired with all the innovation that’s happening in the ground. We run themed safaris looking at hot topics such as sustainability, omnichannel and technology. We also offer sector specific food, fashion, luxury, beauty and home safaris. Our most popular option is a multi sector retail innovation tour that combines great retailers with vibrant shopping destinations.

Keynote Conference Speaking

As a Retail Futurist, Matthew is a seasoned keynote speaker at conferences and corporate events around the world. With fast paced, informal and inspiring visual virtual shopping journeys around the world, Matthew’s keynotes bring the future of retail to life.

Trend Presentations & Workshops

We offer trend presentations in person or online, as CPD for your team or as workshops to kickstart the creativity and strategy for your specific project.

Innovation does not come out of a vacuum. As a creative intelligence agency, we track emerging global retail trends across all sectors. Our job is to show you how you can apply these trends in real, practical ways. Our creative ideation workshops are designed to show you how innovative ideas in other sectors can help transform your business and future proof your projects. We often combine our workshops with retail safaris in order to get your team inspired in much deeper and more immersive ways. We work best with clients at the earliest stages of a creative project, helping them to develop their brief and select an agency that best suits their needs. We also act as Brand Guardians, to make sure the project keeps its original integrity.

Global Best Practice Benchmark Reports

Before you embark on any retail project wouldn’t it be useful to know what the best in the world are doing? Our ‘Best in Class’ consultancy will show you, in all the detail you need, what the most successful brands have achieved and what you can learn. Our One to One consultancy looks at your business, what works and what can be improved based on the best examples from global retail.

Brief Creation & Design Agency Selection

Following an ideation workshop or retail safari, we work with clients to help them develop a strategic plan, which can include a refined design brief as well as recommendations of design consultancies that can help bring the brief to life. We are champions of retail design as a specific discipline, because it incorporates every element; from branding and interiors, to digital and marketing. More importantly, the best retail designers underpin their creativity with solid commercial understanding. Our agency selection is entirely independent and impartial and based on the best fit for a specific client and project.

Some of our work

We work with retailers, brands, developers and designers, often behind the scenes, but our creative trend intelligence has helped drive the development of some great retail schemes.

Long standing clients include Marks & Spencer, Tesco, John Lewis and Westfield. Other clients include IKEA, Nike, Microsoft, De Bijenkorf and L’Oreal.

We have worked extensively with Westfield for all their UK developments and were instrumental in creating the Great Eastern Market; an innovative artisan food market, in Europe’s largest shopping centre, Westfield Stratford. We also worked on the development of the John Lewis food hall and the Waitrose convenience format.

Over the past few years we have worked extensively in the travel sector, with Dublin and Copenhagen Airports, Duty Free operators World Duty Free and Dufry Group and, most noticeably, with Abu Dhabi Airports on the retail development of the vast new Midfield Terminal Complex, which opened spectacularly in 2023.

We have also worked with FMCG businesses, such as Unilever, helping them to develop world class retail and pop up concepts for a number of their consumer brands. The St Ives Mixing Bar in New York and the Lynx Pop Up Barbershop in Dublin were both pop up stores that grew directly out of our creative ideation workshops and retail safaris.

“My team and I use Echochamber on a regular basis to help research both the UK and Global market. We may need information on a new initiative or want an educated external opinion on a topic area very quickly. I find Echochamber incredibly knowledgeable, agile and really good fun to work with. More recently we have used Echochamber for retail safaris in Europe and London. These sessions have proved to be very motivational for the team and have helped to stimulate a lot of creativity and debate within the Design team.”

Head of Store Design and International Store Development, Marks & Spencer

Matthew Brown

Matthew Brown

Retail Futurist

Based in London, Matthew is the founder of Echochamber. Echochamber began back in 1998 as a research library within a retail design agency, but Matthew transformed it into an independent trend intelligence consultancy with a global client list. Matthew is a regular keynote speaker at retail conferences around the world, as well as consulting, writing about all things retail, and leading retail safaris.

Elizabeth Marq

Elizabeth Marq

Visual Merchandising Trends

Elizabeth heads up our Paris office and also runs Visual Merchandising Trends; a French trend service which specialises in merchandising innovation across retail, with a particular focus on the beauty industry.

Some of the businesses we have had the pleasure of working with:

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