In the Global Retail segment, the trends of the previous year continued: retail sales in our bricks-and-mortar shops had to continue to respond to the challenges posed by the pandemic but managed well in this volatile environment. At the same time, we saw a continuing clear upward trend in online retail. Across all channels, Global Retail generated sales of around CHF 585 million.
In the Global Retail segment, Lindt & Sprüngli manages all its own bricks-and-mortar shops worldwide, as well as digital direct sales activities (Lindt e-shops). This is organized under one roof, to ensure the aligned appearance of the Lindt brand and to exploit synergy effects across all channels. The sales generated in this segment are allocated to the national companies, and Global Retail thus also acts internally as a supporting service provider for the market organizations.
We now operate around 500 shops and are constantly opening new ones. Last year we did so mainly in Brazil and Japan, where we opened the new flagship store Omotesando in Tokyo. In addition, a new shop design was introduced in 30 of our stores, combining classic Lindt traditions with clear references to the Master Chocolatier. The shops do not only offer a Pick & Mix range of over 25 Lindor flavors, but also a gift range with personalization options, as well as exclusive products like the Crema Gelata ice cream. Despite various lockdown restrictions, strong growth with the bricks-and-mortar Lindt Shops were achieved, partly thanks to extremely strong Christmas business in all markets.
In the online chocolate sector, Lindt is one of the pioneers, which has paid off during the crisis. We aim to provide our loyal customers with a seamless shopping experience when switching between bricks-and-mortar retail and digital channels of all kinds. The main channels are our own e-shops, which are now operated in 18 countries. We also have online offers for corporate customers, who can order business gifts from Lindt. You can even order Lindt products via a smartphone app, and all these channels have an aligned look & feel appearance. Besides this rigorous brand management, the centralized organization of online retail enables highly professional handling of all background tasks and standard technological platforms, global content management, data analysis, performance marketing or cross-border management of international marketplaces.
The past financial year has confirmed that the pandemic has significantly accelerated existing retail trends. Consumers will not stop shopping online once lockdowns are no longer restricting bricks-and-mortar shopping. They have got used to it and will continue to order online in the future. Our previous investments in this omni-channel strategy have paid off, and we are working on the assumption that these distribution channels will continue to grow. Digital channels are becoming more important and more diversified, while at the same time increasing numbers of competitors are jumping on the bandwagon and the environment is becoming tougher. With over ten years of experience in the direct-to-customer business, Lindt is supremely well prepared not only to survive in this competition, but also to take on a leader role in the chocolate industry. As long as we offer our consumers an excellent shopping experience both online and offline, we will ensure long-term customer loyalty and enhance the value of the Lindt brand across all channels.