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The Winner is:



The Competition

Vivid, colourful, unique: This is the ideal for a vibrant marketplace. Innovative concepts offer variety.

This is precisely the vision for the retail casting “First Store by Alexa”. We want to give newcomers impetus and opportunities to dare to try.

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Best Newcomer

You’re a real newcomer to the market? A one-man show or a small team? You want to set up a start-up and get going straight away? You have a business idea, maybe even a kiosk or a backyard workshop... but so far no shop of your own in a prime location? Or maybe you sell your products on a small scale through regional distributors? Then you belong in this category.


The Centre

Alexa greets more than 16 million customers annually. Whether for fashion, beauty, art or food: With more than 170 shops including 20 restaurants on more than 55,000 square meters, the shopping centre is a great choice for all ages, tastes and budgets. 
In the middle of Berlin.


The Location

Like Piccadilly Circus in London or Times Square in New York, Alexanderplatz is a phenomenon. A symbol of Berlin and the city’s #1 tourist hotspot. For 300,000 people a day, it is a place for encounters and cheer—and today that always means consumption, too. In short, Alexanderplatz is the perfect place for a shopping mall named Alexa.

After the great success of ‘First Store’ volume I, we further strive to encourage innovation and be a launch pad for newcomers in the stationary retail sector. We are looking forward to receiving exciting concepts in the course of ‘First Store vol. II’.

Volker Noack, Member of the Management Board at Union Investment Real Estate GmbH

First Store vol. I’ was an amazing experience for us. We have learnt much about newcomers and start-ups and once again wish to offer all participants THE retail platform for innovations. And to that end, we are awarding an exceptional prize.

Jens Horeis, Head of Property Management, Sonae Sierra

As a member of the jury in the ‘First Store’  competition, I am very pleased to evaluate innovative retail concepts for the first time. This competition is a great opportunity for newcomers to test their concepts in an amazing location.

Sylvia Dudek, Program Director Metro Accelerator powered by Techstars

Experiments and bold ideas are important for stationary trade, as the successful ‘First Store’ premiere has clearly shown. That’s why we are glad to assist as a partner again in the second round. I’m curious about the new concepts we will have to evaluate this time.

Susanne Risch, Board of brand eins Medien AG

We are very happy with our new neighbours Holymesh and congratulate them on winning the ‘First Store’ competition 2017. The jury meetings for ‘First Store vol. I’ were a wonderful experience. That’s why I am already eagerly awaiting the new presentations and concepts.

Jens Peter Klatt, Head of Multichannel, Mister Spex

With ‘First Store vol. I’ the initiators already showed what is meant by encouraging innovation. Considering the fantastic prizes – a rent-free store for six months for the winner and a mall kiosk for three months for each of the two runners-up –, this competition continues to be a major presentation platform for retailers.

Dr. Kai Hudetz, Director of the Institute for Retail Research

HOLYMESH Store-Opening was a huge success!

On Saturday the 4th of November, HOLYMESH opened their first store at Alexa. An hour before the official shop opening, dozens of fans waited in front of the store.
Trendy YouTuber collections and the HOLYCOLLECTION come to life in the new "Millennial Store" at Alexa. The following partners of HOLYMESH will sell their products in addition to the HOLYCOLLECTION in the store: Herr Bergmann, Concrafter / LUCA, DFelix von der Laden, Izzi, Joyce, Diana zur Löwen, Y-Titty, iBlali, xLaeta, Phil Laude, Bullshit TV und ApeCrime.


Later the day, YouTuber and HOLYMESH partner iBlali visited the store and the following autograph signing session on the Metropolis Court stage attracted some 2,000 fans. Other social influencers will visit the store on a regular basis. This makes the entire store an influencer space and thus the stage for further autograph sessions or live streams.


We are very happy to receive the Real Estate Marketing Award 2017

This year, the "Real Estate Marketing Award 2017" was again honored as part of the international real estate exhibition Expo Real in Munich.
Winners of the award for the category "Trade" are Union Investment Real Estate / Sonae Sierra / 21Media, with the "First Store by Alexa".

Picture: f.l.t.r.: Sebastian Guth (21MEDIA), Ralf Schaffus (UIR), Klaus Striebich (Jury-Mitglied), Dirk von der Ahé (Sierra Germany); Photo by Falk Heller


The winner of the retail competition “First Store by Alexa”—and therefore from November 2017 the operator of its own store in the Berlin shopping and leisure centre Alexa—is HOLYMESH. The winner won both the public vote, in which nearly 2,000 Alexa customers and Facebook fans participated, and the final jury vote. HOLYMESH a young, online businesses based in Cologne that sells stylish, trendy clothing and accessory collections by German social influencers exclusively in its online shop. Its partners are some of Germany’s most famous and successful YouTubers and social media stars—including Y-Titty, Shirin David and Herr Bergmann.


The Founders & Managing Directors of HOLYMESH, Nadja Bilek and Jasmina Borgard, responded enthusiastically to the news of her competitive success: "We are very happy to be the winner of the First Store competition. Our community has given us very positive feedback about our participation. It’s our first step into bricks-and-mortar retail and a little experiment. But we are sure that Alexa provides us with the best location we could wish for in this step into the offline world.”

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On 25 January, the jury met in Berlin to decide on the finalists. The seven-member jury consists of Volker Noack, Managing Director of Union Investment Real Estate; Oliver Hanna, Centre Manager of Alexa; Dirk von der Ahé, Leasing Manager Germany Sonae Sierra; Susanne Risch, CEO of brand eins Wissen; Markus Heckhausen, Founder and CEO of the Berlin cult brand Ampelmann; Jens Peter Klatt, Head of Multichannel at Mister Spex; and Dr. Kai Hudetz, Director of the Institute für Handelsforschung (Institute for Retail Research).

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They discussed the applications and selected the six most promising concepts for Alexa. ‘We are very happy that our competition consists of such a huge range of creative business ideas that really challenged us on the jury. Alexa’s customers can now look forward to an exciting vote and interesting winners,’ said jury chairman Volker Noack, CEO of Union Investment Real Estate GmbH.

These could soon be some of the new neighbours ...

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