Courtesy of The Raithwaite Estate Spa, N Yorks
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UK Spa Association

News and views from the UK Spa Association

TWO DAYS OF LEADERSHIP, INSPIRATION AND NETWORKING AT EUROPE’S LEADING MEETING PLACE FOR SPA & WELLNESS

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The World Spa & Wellness Convention will return to ExCeL London on February 25th - 26th, as part of the Professional Beauty trade show. Unique in Europe, the World Spa & Wellness Convention is a leading spa industry networking event for senior management. 

With a global following and attracting an audience of over 300 senior professionals, this strategy-focused event brings you to the heart of the profession. Each year the convention covers a wide range of topics high on the global industry agenda.

Speakers at the convention will be drawn from around the world and include some of the most established names in the sector, such as Andrew Gibson, Vice President of Well Being Luxury Brands, Accor Hotels; Marc Ellin, Global Head of Miraval Group and Kay Pennington, Group Spa Manager at Aqua Sana Centre Parcs. To see the full speaker line-up please click here.

From innovation in technology to hyper-personalisation, customer relations to rebirth of fitness in spa, the convention will cover the most pressing issues facing the industry. Please take a look at the full convention programme set to give you practical solutions and ideas to benefit your business and career.

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Spa Benchmarking Insights: Who Sells the Most Retail?

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If you are already one of the spas registered for the UK Spa Associations Benchmarking scheme, then you will already be benefitting from the monthly benchmarking reports allowing you to compare your spa's performance with that of other similar spas in the UK.

This valuable data is designed to show you where you are excelling in your businesses performance and where you could make improvements.

Given the accumulated data that we now have available, in 2018 the UK Spa Association will produce quarterly "Insights' based on the data provided by our registered spas. This will highlight interesting patterns, trends or disparities based solely on the data that would not immediately be obvious to registered spas simply from the benchmark reports they receive each month.

The first full Insights Report will be produced in March 2018, to give you a bit of a taster  . . . and for a bit of fun, here is a question?

Who sells the most retail  . . . North or South?

Or more accurately, who is better at converting Treatment Revenue in to Retail Revenue?

To start the year off we decided to analyse data we have from registered spas in the UK dating back to March 2017 to see who averaged the best treatment to retail conversation figures. From the graph below it’s fairly clear that the answer is The South.


Over the period March to October, spas in the south averaged around a 4% higher Treatment to Retail Conversion figure than their cousins in the North.

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However, we wondered just how much this was affected by London Spas? We wondered if, just like property prices, London was skewing all the data for the south. So we split out the figures for London and look what happened . . . 

In contrast to what we thought, it turns out that London is actually a slight drag on Conversion Figures for the south, with figures for the South East and South West combined averaging higher conversion rates than London alone!

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How to support the emotional wellness of your team

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Supporting the emotional wellness of your team is a complex business because we are dealing with people. People who have hopes and fears, dreams and dilemmas. We are also dealing with sensitive people. Young people (in the main) and we have to act as a boss, confident and guide. But believe me – if you do this with passion and commitment and maintain this as an on-going practice, you will benefit with a more engaged team and a more passionate and revitalized team.

We are all individuals

The most important element when supporting the emotional wellness of your team is to acknowledge the unique personal tools that they bring to the role – their character, attitude, energy and sense of spirit. These are invaluable assets to be nurtured and respected.  On another hand those assets can also be their biggest enemy, making therapists over sensitive, fragile and vulnerable. Therapists can feel everything…both empathy and sympathy is their strongest point but it can totally exhaust them as well. The impact of therapists’ wellbeing can affect everything from client engagement to professional performance.

Managers need to be fully aware of the complexity of therapists’ characters. They are not warriors (at least not most of them). They are givers, often introverts that would rather touch than talk.

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New Year is the perfect time to get in gear and refocus for a strong 2018

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It’s a New Year and a great time to refocus and regroup. One thing we are learning more and more is that the mind-set is very powerful in helping us achieve and deliver. It gives us confidence and motivation when we take the time out to tap into our mind on various areas of our life, and in turn gives us a strong chance at any desired results. New Year’s resolutions are a great way of doing this generally. New Year gives us the feeling of a new chapter and is the perfect time to look at personal, business goals and performance, then plan ahead for the New Year.

So, take a look at reports. Here are a few to get you thinking and planning:

  • How has the business been performing?
  • What did you achieve in relation to the previous year?
  • What were the most popular treatments?
  • What was your average spend per client/hour/room?
  • Who are your key team members?
  • What is your retail performance like?

 

Reflecting over these results means we can take a look at any areas that may need training for the team. It also shows us our most popular types of treatments and where we can focus in the New Year – are our most popular treatments one of the top on profits for the business?

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Staff Training can improve business performance, profit and staff morale.

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Have you ever been on a training course and felt inspired re-energised ready to deliver what you have learnt to all your clients? January Can be a month to schedule training develop staff in further skills to meet your client’s demands.

Advantages to your business include:

  • You choose what new skills your workforce requires, target skills to meet the needs of your operation for now and in the future
  • Training your staff can result in better customer service, better work safety practices and productivity improvements
  • You demonstrate to your workforce that you value them enough to invest in them, improving loyalty and staff retention. In turn

Retention is a saving to you

Training has many benefits for your staff:

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What makes a great massage? With Beata Aleksandrowicz

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A great massage should offer much more than physical relief and relaxation. Delivered with knowledge, humanity, professionalism and commitment, a client should feel cared for. They should also feel a positive change that addresses their concerns. A good massage should make your client feel more positive, at peace and connected with themselves. There should also be clear guidance on how to support the results of the treatment at home. 

To deliver a good massage we must acknowledge the healing power of touch 

Touch is the mother of all senses, and is the first sense that develops in the embryo. It’s how we learn about the world around us and gives us the deepest connection with another human being. It brings comfort, reassures us that we are not alone, provides warmth, care and attention. 

In today’s disconnected world we avoid touch because we don’t have the emotional understanding of how to respond to it. People don’t know how to handle intimacy either – even simple hug can become a problem. This is why touch can be misunderstood and misused. Positive touch is a condition of physical and emotional growth and I believe massage plays a vital role in restoring this balance. 

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National Spa Week Success in 2017

This year we started promoting National Spa Week early on to ensure we got as many Spa’s as possible involved. From May onwards we had a regular presence via editorial and press advertisements and digital banners in many of the major trade titles including Professional Beauty, The Beauty Guild, European Spa, Spa Life, World Spa and Wellness and many more.

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The National Spa Week Website www.spaweek.co.uk saw circa 3,000 unique users during the week and 480 spas registered to run promotions for the week – that’s an increase of 50% on 2016.

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This year we really saw an increase in consumer news coverage with over 10.5 million opportunities to see in documented print and on-line coverage not to mention bucket loads of social media and even broadcast coverage. We were trending on Twitter again on the first day of the week.

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Fitness Engagement

It’s time to start thinking about the January gym rush, it’s the busiest month for gym sign-ups and expect to see a lot of your existing members back in the gym working off their Christmas dinners! Many gyms focus on sales during this busy period and neglect the retention of their current members. Rather than spend time looking for new members it is far easier and more cost effective to retain the ones you already have, it’s also far more enjoyable!

I first worked as a Fitness Instructor in 1999 when I took a role in the heart of Reading at a bustling 2000 member gym. My new boss could see I was an enthusiastic young woman and he decided to focus my energy into the engagement of our members, I was tasked with creating elaborate gym challenges, notice boards, member competitions and member’s events. My colleagues and I spent a lot of time on the gym floor, supporting and engaging with our members. There was a great buzz in the gym and we had happy members, we would regularly attract new members simply by recommendation and referral. These straightforward yet effective methods of member engagement are still entirely relevant today.

There have been many technological advances that can support member engagement. Gym challenges are now available on the equipment, along with TV channels, radio, goal setting, progress charts and even computer games. There are apps and gadgets that can monitor your fitness levels and running distances for example. However, be cautious not to rely on these technological advancements and neglect the personal approach. Get to know your members, understand what their goals are, what their training preferences may be and get to know the times they come in to train. Address them by their name and make them feel valued. Even those members who prefer to keep a low profile will appreciate a personalised welcome and farewell if nothing else. A nice little touch is to send an email to your customer if you haven’t seen them for a while, let them know they’re missed, wish them a happy birthday or congratulate them when they hit certain goals.

Keep up to date with Industry trends and refresh your equipment offering from time to time. Keep your fitness classes fresh and introduce extra services such as juice bars, healthy menus, personal training, nutritional assessments and health coaching to name a few. I would also recommend having a small retail offering, selling swimwear, gym wear, health products and perhaps skincare and body products. It all contributes to member engagement.

With all these ideas in mind, the main success of every gym I have worked in has been entirely down to the warmth and interaction of the staff!

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Be part of a wellness revolution.

Pamela and Lynsey are passionate about creating a complete lifestyle experience which will enable you to relax, reset, and improve clarity thus allowing you to continue your life’s adventures in a more balanced way. With combined experience stretching over twenty years in the wellness sector, their intent is clear: your well-being is their passion.

Soon to be located in Edinburgh, under one environmentally friendly roof, PS Sustainable Wellness is a private members wellness club that fits around your needs ensuring your wellness journey is achievable and sustainable, as well as luxurious and five star.

Our vision is borne out of a personal need for effective and sustainable wellness services that are easily accessible.  We found that we were spending a lot of time travelling to different locations to fulfil our wellness needs and it was becoming time-consuming and stressful - the anthesis of what wellness should be.  With that in mind, our idea of creating a place which could offer the services we wanted, under one roof and in a sustainable and luxurious way was born. We are truly committed to creating a place where not only our members are at the centre of what we do but so is the protection of the environment.  We firmly believe that in the 21st-century organic practices will deliver first class, luxury results.

PS. Sustainable Wellness will focus on 5 key areas of wellness which we passionately believe are essential in order to live a good life.  These are; mental health, fitness, nutrition, spa treatments and remedial and therapeutic bodywork.  By focussing on working with members on a consultative basis, each member will receive a unique wellness plan which will change as their needs change and as their journey progresses.  Our qualified practitioners will spend time consulting members on an individual basis and offer support and guidance to ensure each member can fulfil their own potential.  We firmly believe that by offering a bespoke and tailored service, members will enjoy sustained and habitual wellness. 

Our journey thus far has been inspiring and exciting and as such, we want to invite you to come with us as we move to the next phase of the project.  For a limited time, we are inviting you to become a founder member and help shape the future of your wellness.

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How to PR your Spa during the traditionally quieter months of January & February

A successful and effective PR and marketing strategy are built through a consistent on-brand message, so by making sure you’re on point throughout the year, the shoulder months of January & February should look after themselves. However, some PR hacks which could be implemented during these months include:

Bespoke spa packages and exclusive promotions, each encourage spa spend. Jump on the annual trend of the ‘new year, new you’ mentality, offering discounted gym memberships and midweek Twilight packages. Offer exciting and discounted retail items which will encourage the continued treatment journey and spa feeling, at home.

Raise awareness of your spa through local, regional & national newspapers as well as magazines. Secure yourself as the expert in your field, by answering the questions of magazine readers.

Common editorial subjects at this time of year, include detox body wrap treatments and dry brushing after the Christmas excesses, tanning and hydrating facials for parched winter skin etc. Concentrate your treatment offering accordingly. For bounce back opportunities, throw in a complimentary or discounted yoga class or test for food intolerances.

Ramp up your social media activities and post high quality, lifestyle images and engage with clients and would-be customers. Use your own hashtag or app. Offer client’s exclusive Facebook promotions, should they leave a favourable online review. Word of mouth is still one of the best ways to attract new clients and these glowing online reviews, will help reduce downtime come January. Boost such reviews with a well-timed and targeted Facebook ad.

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Boosting Revenue with a Christmas Spa Event

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Christmas is a great time to hold an event and can boost revenue with retail sales and services in the spa. There are many different things you can do at your event, and it can depend on your individual spa as to how best to host this event. 

If you have a day spa where many local people visit regularly, then perhaps you’d find it better to charge a ticket fee that could be redeemable on products purchased at the event. This often guarantees a better turnout on the night and you know how many guests to expect. If you are a destination or hotel spa, you could send invites out so local customers are aware, plus have signage in the reception areas and around the spa to entice current guests to join you. 

A goody bag is a great way to entice guests to your event. See if your suppliers can help by adding gifts to your goody bags, and attending the event to demonstrate treatments and offer a presentation on products and Christmas gifts. You could also offer promotional offers if your good bag, such as an added benefit when having a treatment in January (to boost January visits), or a gift with purchase when spending over a certain amount of products. 

Create a festive atmosphere by including mulled wine, champagne, and Christmas treats.

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Knightsbridge-based facialist Linda Meredith

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A PERSONALISED PRESCRIPTION 

Many premium clients are already familiar with the Linda Meredith brand, which is found at numerous 5 Star spas across the world, including the Mandarin Oriental in London, Barcelona and Boston, as well as Chewton Glen here in the UK. The brand has also recently launched on Virgin Atlantic Airlines and the Oceania and Seabourn Luxury cruise liners. Others will know the name because of Linda's roster of very famous clients, including Kate Moss, Penelope Cruz, Madonna and Gwyneth Paltrow. Victoria Beckham even revealed in her memoir that she visits the Knightsbridge salon every time she's in London. All name-dropping aside, the treatments and products are primarily designed to give fast visible results to all, no matter what their skin concern. "The brand is best suited to those who want results without going to the extremes of invasive treatments," Daniel explains. "It's also proven to be successful at treating a very wide variety of skin concerns with great results." This is because the brand believes in layering a highly customised selection of products to address the skin's needs on a daily basis. This entails educating clients on how to understand their skin, to really analyse its concerns on any specific day, and then giving them the tools they need to address those precise concerns themselves. "It's about dealing with what I can see on your face," Linda explains. "Your skin alters every day - you might have spent the day outside, you've had the flu, you have emotional stress - it all affects your skin. Why don't we listen to our body? Look at your face for a minute: what do you look like, what do you feel like? Are you shiny, tired, dull? Pick the cream that addresses that." 

GO SOFTLY 

With their botanical extracts and nourishing formulas, Linda's products are designed to repair and restore the skin, rather than completely resurface it. It's a softer, more nurturing approach that delivers strong results, says Head Trainer Sherelle Louis. "Linda is a traditionalist - she believes in repairing and restoring," says Sherelle. "There has been a real trend for a while in skincare to use the strong cosmeceutical salicylic acids and they certainly have their place. However, you really notice the immediate difference after using Linda’s products." The retail products all complement a menu of four professional treatments. Sherelle explains: "There's the Haute Couture Facial, which is individually designed for each 

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Customer Engagement

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Vizzbook has taken the old-style Visitors Book, online and linked it to social networks. Vizzbooks creates a unique platform that shares customer feedback directly to their friends and followers on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin. 

Vizzbooks intentions are to capture your customer's feedback immediately after their experience, by logging onto a personalised branded tablet. 

Your customer's reviews will automatically attach and post on Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin. You can also upload vouchers, special offers on the Vizzbook dashboard, Customers can access these from your website which can give you an average ROI is 546% return. 

Benefits for your business 

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CACI Free Prize Draw for NSW

Free Prize Draw to Win a CACI “Non-Surgical Facelift” treatment worth £120 to celebrate National Spa Week 2017. 

All you have to do is ‘LIKE’ the National Spa Week Facebook/Twitter page, SHARE this post and COMMENT below as to why you would like to win this treatment. Everyone who completes all three steps is automatically entered into the free prize draw to win this fantastic prize. *Terms and Conditions apply. 

The award-winning CACI “Non-Surgical Facelift” treatment is the go-to facial for numerous celebrities to get their skin ready for the spotlight. The CACI “Red Carpet Facial” has garnered the attention of international celebrities that include Lindsay Lohan and Christie Brinkley as well as numerous UK TV personalities. 

Long-time CACI fan Jennifer Lopez says “The CACI Ultra is amazing”. 

What is it? 

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UKSA Networking Events

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September has been an exciting month for our Spa Operator contingency! We held not one but three Spa Director Assemblies across the UK! 

In London wellness was on the agenda in the tranquil surroundings of Bhuti in the heart of Richmond. Bhuti is truly a one of a kind, an eco wellbeing centre, day spa, yoga studio and vegan cafe in the heart of South West London. Debate and discussion focused around agency staffing, commission structures and hotel capture rate. 

Our Northern Assembly took place at a historical landmark in the Spa world, the Devonshire Dome, Buxton, where the healing waters stretch back at least as far as the Romans. The building became known as the Devonshire Royal Hospital in 1934 and was one of the last hydropathic hospitals in the UK, using the healing waters to treat many health conditions. The Dome still houses a modern day Spa which is run by the University of Derby. Students can get hands on experience working in the Spa whilst studying for a degree in Spa Management. Our Assembly here took an academic stance and discussions were had about how students perceive a career in spa, what are the barriers and how do we PR Spa to the students so that we don't lose them to other fields in Beauty. 

In addition to our regular Northern and London Assemblies we hosted our first ever South West Spa Director Assembly by request of the Operators in the SW who are growing in number and seeing an increasing focus on Spa and Wellness in their region. We were therefore delighted to host this meeting on their behalf at the 16th Century Boringdon Hall in Plymouth. Exactly one year ago to the day we were there they had opened a new wing to the hotel, Gaia Spa, drawing inspiration from Gaia (also known as mother nature) they designed a spa that encompasses natural materials including wood, stone and glass for natural lighting in order to bring the outdoors in. The Assembly brought together leaders from Spas across the region and discussions focused on staffing and retention and how we go about highlighting the ever expanding SW Spa sector to the rest of the UK! 

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Maximize New Business In National Spa Week

 

Buddy with the right partners for maximum new business 

Sounds obvious, but look for businesses which target the same customer audience as you. Fashion retailers, restaurants, wedding dress shops, bars, health clubs, florists and hair salons 

Promote yourself to their clients. And vice versa 

Promote your offer on their website 

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Ideas for Events and Social Media or National Spa Week?

So you have signed up to be part of The UK Spa Association, National Spa week, and looking for ways to how to get your customers through the door to gain the physical, mental and emotional benefits of regular spa visits. 

What about advertising on your website and through social media how you are supporting National Spa week and offering treatments to support your local cancer charity, International Breast cancer day, or raising money for charities such as Look good feel better helping women with cancer or even for the young one's teens unite fighting cancer. 

If you are a salon that has trained therapist in Cancer Massage, why not offer a sponsor a treatment for a cancer sufferer, this could be done by someone paying for a friend or relative to receive a treatment. 

What about your regular clients when they tweet/like on facebook and all your social media platforms, mentioning your business and the #nsw @spavoice could be a free hand or foot massage this will really help to shout about your amazing business 

Mini treatment trials sessions such as neck and shoulder massage, back facial, mini facial, foot or hand massage. 

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How to leverage your involvement in National Spa Week

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National Spa Week is a fantastic event to be involved in, an event which is about raising awareness to the public about the importance of time out and visiting a spa. It is growing hugely as an industry event, and many spa directors have given feedback on how it’s boosted them and how they have managed to leverage their involvement and spa during National Spa Week. 

So how can you use NSW to your advantage? Once you have your offer set, you can promote this in many ways, to gain interest in your spa. Here are our top 5 suggestions: 

1. Send press releases to your local papers, magazines, radio stations, industry publications, and so on. Tell them about NSW, its importance, and what you’re offering to get involved. 

2. Invite a local blogger in. Take a look at local bloggers that present work similar to your spa’s ethos and standards and invite them into discuss NSW, and experience a mini treatment. Get them shouting about you and NSW too. 

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Don’t underestimate the power of facial massage

Beata Full portait copyA good facial massage can allow your face to breathe and restore the sparkle and colour.  We do tend to overlook the face when talking about massage.  Facial massaging will boost blood circulation, firm skin and tone the muscles while also encouraging the flow of lymph and releasing endorphins - the hormone of joy.  It can slow down the ageing process and bring about a real relaxation. So why go under the knife when there are other ways to achieve the similar results!

We tent to think about massage as a part of beauty treatment procedures, but good face massage can bring much than that!There are hundreds nerve points on the face and according to Chinese medicine these relate to each body’s organs. So massaging your face can affect positively your whole body. 

We ‘face’ the world every day from the moment we wake until we retire. Think of all those phrases ‘face the facts’, ‘put on a brave face’, ‘talk face to face’ all ways we deliver our messages. Our face can be under lots of stress as a result of that. We hold our emotions there but also face can be affected by the profession we do.

For example teachers, speakers, actors will usually have quite tense face muscles especially around the jaw. Lack of sleep will affect our face, tension in shoulders or neck will definitely leave the mark on the face. Headaches both chronic and occasional will tense the fascia, creating even more pressure hence more headaches. We could go on and on.

There is also touch element in it which we all need so much. We know that massage is hugely popular in the spa and there is a reason for it. People are craving connection. They crave the power of touch.

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Why is National Spa Week so important for our Industry?

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If we want our industry to grow it is imperative that we make the public understand the many benefits of regular spa attendance. It is easy when you work in the industry, living and breathing your area of expertise, to assume that everyone magically knows the benefits too. That’s why everyone is coming to spas already right?

Wrong!

To date, only 5% of the UK regularly have spa treatments. That’s not to say more people aren’t occasionally visiting a spa, as a treat or for a special occasion but the operative word here is ‘REGULARLY’.

You wouldn’t go to a gym for a one-hour workout, only twice a year and expect to be two stone lighter with a beautifully toned body (we wish). In the same way, your clients can’t expect to receive long lasting benefits from visiting a spa only twice a year.

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