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Sustainability at MediaMarkt in Haidhausen

At first glance, the modern MediaMarkt store in the Munich district of Haidhausen doesn’t look out of the ordinary. But on second glance, it soon becomes apparent that enormous importance has been attached to sustainability here – not just from its architectural design, but also its product range brimming with green products and services in nearly all departments helping customers save energy and protect the environment. The Sustainability News team set off to explore MediaMarkt Haidhausen together with Michael Tretter, department manager of MediaMarktSaturn's sustainability department.

Systematically saving energy – and a great deal more …

Since 2012, all Saturn and MediaMarkt stores have been continuously optimized to maximize their energy efficiency. For example, whenever new stores are built or existing ones refitted, state-of-the-art heating, ventilation, air conditioning and lighting systems are installed. This was also the case at MediaMarkt in Haidhausen, which was entirely refurbished in June 2018. Like all other MediaMarkt and Saturn stores, it has been run solely on green electricity since 2017. And when it reopened, it was also fitted with low-energy LED lighting systems. The store’s energy consumption has additionally been cut as a result of its much smaller size: once the biggest MediaMarkt in Europe, it now has a retail floorspace of 5,600 square metres. This saves energy and reduces the store’s harmful CO2 emissions. “As well as focusing on energy efficiency, in Munich we had an especially environmentally friendly PVC floor fitted by Tarkett, a leading supplier of sustainable flooring. It makes for a better indoor environment – and is therefore good for the health of our employees and customers,” explained sustainability expert Michael Tretter.

Sustainable services

On our tour of the store, we saw sustainable products and services at numerous touchpoints: collection bins for old electrical appliances, fluorescent bulbs and batteries as well as spent toner cartridges and waste packaging are clearly visible in the entrance area and clearly marked with a large sign. The collection and disposal service for unwanted appliances is especially popular with customers – not just in Munich but throughout Germany. In fact, about 70% of MediaMarkt and Saturn customers take advantage of the offer to have their old appliances taken away and properly disposed of when new ones are delivered.

The while-you-wait repair service for smartphones and tablets is located in the entrance area, too, and has also gone down very well with customers. And the more expensive devices are, the more popular having them repaired is as it helps extend their lifespan.

Sustainable products which are also fun!

As far as white and brown goods are concerned, there’s a big assortment of energy-saving, eco-friendly products in the highest efficiency classes. And when it comes to large household appliances in particular, the ecological high-flyers are also the high sellers. The top appliances include numerous items produced by MediaMarktSaturn’s own brand KOENIC, which delivers sustainability at surprisingly low prices.

Next stop: the lighting department, where there’s a wide range of energy-efficient LED bulbs, including from ISY (another MediaMarktSaturn own brand), which pays attention to not just ecological but also social sustainability. And there’s a similar situation regarding printers and toner, for alongside proven premium brands and products, customers are offered a resource-saving alternative in the form of refillable printer cartridges.

The fact that sustainability isn’t just a rational policy but can also be fun is apparent in the e-mobility department. The electric scooters there are a rapid way to get around (up to 30 kph) without producing noise or exhaust fumes. What’s more, they’re also very flexible, as they can be taken on trams, trains and buses. And they’re tremendous fun into the bargain!

Carrier bags for life instead of disposable plastic bags have been standard at MediaMarkt in Germany for two years, including here in Haidhausen. This makes a great contribution to conserving resources because millions of disposable plastic bags have been prevented from entering the waste stream. There have only been a few complaints from customers said Herbert Schlecht, who has been a store manager at MediaMarkt for ten years, including five years in Haidhausen. He added that the communication campaign by the entire retail sector helped reduce the consumption of plastic bags in Germany.

And speaking of communication: “We should tell our customers far more about we’re already doing to promote sustainability,” declared Herbert Schlecht. After all, the topic of sustainable, conscious consumption is becoming increasingly important to them. As a leading consumer electronics retailer, MediaMarktSaturn feels obliged to create added value for consumers while developing solutions to environmental and social challenges.