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How Hunkemöller optimises its retail business with a data transformation

Discover how Hunkemöller, a leading lingerie brand, partnered with Devoteam G Cloud and Google Cloud to overhaul their data infrastructure. The result? A modern data stack that helps their teams get enhanced customer segmentation, real-time insights, image classification accuracy, and streamlined operations.

Google Cloud

About the customer

Meet Hunkemöller, a leading lingerie brand with a mission to continually listen, learn, inspire, and innovate through collaboration and community. Operating with over 7000 employees and 900 stores in 12 countries, they are the market leader in Germany, Netherlands, and Belgium, and fast-growing in other countries to become the number one. 

Hunkemöller’s successful omnichannel strategy makes them a big online player, while their wholesale and concession partners help them grow globally. They’re known for their design-led approach and strong customer engagement, with 75% of their customers being members.

The Challenge

Before embarking on their data transformation journey, Hunkemöller faced several challenges. 

  • First, they missed extensive in-house expertise to build and maintain a modern data stack, leading them to rely on external partners, which added to the project’s cost and complexity. 
  • Secondly, Hunkemöller’s existing on-prem data architecture was based on systems that were not scalable or agile enough to support their rapidly growing business in the dynamic retail marketplace. Recognising the limitations of their infrastructure, Hunkemöller had to take on the task of completely overhauling their data infrastructure.
  • Operating as a fast fashion enterprise, Hunkemöller faced challenges in expanding its data capacity to extract meaningful insights. Additionally, Hunkemöller had siloed data. The challenges became clear when they tried to work with large collections of data, like having information on all the customers and all transactions. The existing on-premise systems couldn’t provide what was needed, leaving Hunkemöller without a big data analytics solution. 
  • Hunkemöller couldn’t use Machine Learning or Artificial Intelligence with their current setup. This was causing them problems because they wanted to make forecasts for things like buying trends and price changes. To make this happen, they needed to set up the right system, including having models that could do these calculations.

The Goal 

Staying cutting-edge and scalable is crucial for Hunkemöller’s fast fashion business. Hunkemöller’s goal was to create a modern data stack that would enhance their agility, scalability, data quality, and governance. They aimed to leverage data to provide personalised recommendations to customers, track the effectiveness of marketing campaigns, and improve operational efficiency.

The Solution

To address Hunkemöller’s challenges and achieve their goals, Hunkemöller partnered with Devoteam G Cloud and Google Cloud to implement a modern data stack. 

This included an ingestion layer, a data warehouse and data marts, allowing Hunkemöller to store and process vast amounts of data efficiently. 

The cloud-based solution implemented by Devoteam G Cloud ensured accelerated time-to-value, giving Hunkemöller the ability to deploy new data applications rapidly. The market-leading architecture used by Devoteam G Cloud guaranteed scalability, security, and reliability, providing a best-in-class data stack. This solution enabled Hunkemöller to keep up with its fast-fashion business, adapt to market changes, and meet customer needs.

The Methodology

The successful implementation followed Devoteam G Cloud and Google Cloud’s methodology for building a scalable and agile modern data stack. 

Devoteam G Cloud brought added value by ensuring that Hunkemöller was able to maintain and grow within the platform that was built by Devoteam. They achieved this by making sure that everything built was documented and that internal users were trained.

  • Assessment and Planning: Devoteam G Cloud and Google Cloud experts collaborated closely with Hunkemöller’s BI team to understand the company’s current challenges and desired outcomes. Together, they created a tailored plan for the data transformation journey.
  • Technology Selection: After analysing Hunkemöller’s requirements, Devoteam G Cloud recommended Google Cloud’s BigQuery, Looker Studio, Dataflow, Dataplex, Datastream, and Vertex AI as the ideal technology suite to build the modern data stack. These cutting-edge solutions were chosen for their scalability, flexibility, and ability to handle large volumes of data efficiently.
  • Data Migration and Integration: The next step involved the creation of a new cloud-based data platform for Hunkemöller. It contained ingestion, a data warehouse, and data marts. The operation also included integrating data from the existing platform into the new one. Additionally, they integrated third-party data into the data stack to gain deeper insights into customer interests. They integrated Google Trends data to understand product trends and customer behaviour. Additionally, they included weather information to assess its influence on sales.
  • Machine Learning Implementation: To achieve advanced personalisation and recommendation capabilities, Devoteam G Cloud implemented machine learning models using Vertex AI. These models analysed customer behaviour, preferences, and purchase history to predict and deliver personalised product recommendations. 
  • Governance and Security: Ensuring data governance and security was a top priority. Robust practices were established to safeguard customer data, fostering Hunkemöller’s confidence that they are protected against threats. How? Hunkemöller implemented Octa with single-sign-on (SSO) and 2-factor-authentication. Devoteam then used Terraform to enable infrastructure-as-code-driven role assignment in GCP, ensuring utmost security. The great thing for Hunkemöller? They’re still holding the keys. They can easily audit access, and add or withdraw access rights & make sure only the right users have access to the appropriate data. Devoteam just built the infrastructure to allow them to do that. 
  • Training and Support: Throughout the implementation process, Devoteam G Cloud provided training and support to Hunkemöller’s teams. This enabled them to leverage the full potential of the modern data stack and effectively use the tools for their daily operations. Devoteam is really great at using Hunkemöller’s internal Jira board and documenting everything in our own Confluence pages. It gave Hunkemöller ownership over the development assets and our developers could take over whenever they wanted. Devoteam also facilitated a set-up that integrated DBT, enabling Hunkemöller’s development team to work autonomously and leverage the advanced data stack put in place.

The Result

The implementation of the modern data stack empowered Hunkemöller with a data-driven advantage that transformed their business in various ways:

  • Built a foundation for future growth: The modern data stack built by Devoteam G Cloud and Google Cloud laid a solid foundation for Hunkemöller’s future growth and innovation. The scalable and agile architecture allowed them to continuously expand their data capabilities, staying ahead of the competition.
  • Improved customer segmentation and personalisation led to optimised marketing campaigns: by leveraging Google Cloud’s Data Plex and Vertex AI, Hunkemöller gained the ability to segment customers more effectively and personalise their shopping experience. Machine learning models analysed vast amounts of customer data to predict individual preferences, enabling the marketing team to create personalised marketing campaigns, reaching the right customers with the right message at the right time. The result? Targeted marketing campaigns, higher customer satisfaction and improved customer retention. 
  • Making it easier to find products with increased accuracy of image classification: With the help of Vertex AI’s advanced machine learning capabilities, Hunkemöller was able to significantly reduce how many images were considered as “inappropriate content” by Google Ads, by pre-classifying them using Vertex AI.  This improvement enabled them to showcase products more effectively in Google Ads, ensuring customers found what they were looking for with ease.
  • Real-time insights in stores: Hunkemöller is working on rolling out real-time insights at their physical stores, using Google Cloud’s Looker platform. Store managers will soon be able to make data-driven decisions about inventory levels, staffing, and customer service, optimising the in-store experience.
  • Enhanced operational efficiency: The implementation of the modern data stack streamlined various operational processes, reducing manual efforts and improving overall efficiency. Data analytics facilitated better decision-making across marketing, sales, and inventory management.

Working with Devoteam really made me feel that the success of the project was a shared success. We were all working towards the same goal. They wanted us to succeed in delivering solutions that match our needs, not just stick to the first solution we agreed on.


In conclusion, the partnership between Hunkemöller, Devoteam G Cloud, and Google Cloud revolutionised how Hunkemöller leverages data to make strategic decisions, deliver personalised experiences, and drive business growth. 

Hunkemöller’s investment in a modern data stack built a solid foundation for future growth. This transformative data journey strengthened Hunkemöller’s position as a market leader and innovator in the retail industry. With the modern data stack in place, the company gained a better understanding of its customer needs, enabling the creation of insights for management, marketing, stores and operational teams. The data-driven approach improved decision-making across various business aspects, resulting in increased agility and operational efficiency.

Did you find Hunkemöller’s data-driven journey inspiring?

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