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HomeNEWSIs mixed reality the future of retail? Comvita thinks so

Is mixed reality the future of retail? Comvita thinks so

Comvita, global leader in Mānuka honey, has announced a new collaboration with Microsoft, with the creation of an immersive multi-sensory consumer experience powered by Microsoft’s HoloLens technology.

Set to launch to consumers in January 2022 at Expo 2020 Dubai, the experience represents the next step in Comvita’s mission to transform the consumer retail experience, following the opening of its award winning multi-sensory space, The Wellness Lab, in Auckland earlier this year.

With its application of Microsoft’s HoloLens technology, Comvita has transported the Wellness Lab’s 180-degree theatre experience into the fully mobile headset, enabling it to connect consumers anywhere in the world to the unique benefits of Mānuka honey and the magic of bees and nature.

David Banfield, Comvita CEO says: “We are super excited to have collaborated with Microsoft on this world-first consumer-led application of the HoloLens technology. This is a special chapter at Comvita as we aim to become a true digital-first, premium consumer lifestyle brand. Working with Microsoft and utilising the HoloLens technology gives us a unique opportunity to connect our consumers around the world to the magic of the hive and our unique Aotearoa Mānuka forests.” 

Banfield adds: “We believe that in this new Covid era, retail is about creating experience and connection so we’re incredibly proud to be delivering this unique experience for our consumers. I would like to thank the Microsoft team and our New Zealand based creative partners Blur the Lines who have made this possible.”

The mixed reality experience will launch as part of Comvita’s involvement at World Expo Dubai where Comvita will use the technology to connect visitors to the unique flavours of Mānuka honey as part of the New Zealand at Expo “Taste New Zealand” showcase. 

“We’re thrilled to see Comvita and Blur the Lines using HoloLens to influence how people taste and learn about different products. I love to see real Kiwi ingenuity from companies using HoloLens in a way that brings new, fresh, and in this case, sweet, dimensions to multisensory experiences. To be making that strong connection between our food and the environment in a way that people viscerally experience and remember, not only makes for more powerful customer engagement, it also has the potential to change the way people think about our relationship with the natural world,” says Matt Bostwick, Partner Director at Microsoft New Zealand.

Banfield concludes: “This is a hugely exciting time for Comvita. Working with Microsoft on the delivery of this project has allowed us to continue to transform the connection between health and nature with a multi-sensory journey of discovery. With HoloLens we can share Comvita’s unique story with people anywhere, from special events to in-store and even at home. When consumers experience and appreciate the connection between nature and health, I’m sure they will be as inspired as we are to help create a world where we can all thrive together.”

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