SPEAKER ANNOUNCEMENT: Angus McKay, Chief Executive Officer of 7-Eleven will be joining some of the biggest names in… https://t.co/oYZ9XNmJAY(about 14 hours ago)
We are very pleased to announce that @MastercardAU are joining us as our Event Partner for the Retail Leaders Forum… https://t.co/nqaakmOBd8(about 1 day ago)
A2 Milk to make splash in US https://t.co/Q6P9Y42DEU(about 2 days ago)
Celebrating its 7th year, the Retail Leaders Forum is the most senior and significant gathering of Retail executives in Australia.
Consumers, economics, and technology are changing on a global scale, upsetting traditional business models and creating new opportunities for transformation.
To remain competitive in today’s environment – retailers are seeking comprehensive strategies that set it apart and translates into real business value.
Bringing together the nation’s leading Retail executives in an exclusive retailer-only event this is the ideal platform from which to formulate strategies to successfully overcome the challenges of the future and enhance business performance today.
This event features an ambitious, business-focussed retail agenda with over 40 C-Suite perspectives from the highest levels of retail in Australia. In a closed, invitation-only format, delegates will benefit by interacting and learning directly from local and international retailers.
// 9+ keynotes
// 2 Powerful days
// Executive learning agenda
// 50+ industry speakers
// 350+ executives
// 5 Star networking environment
Vice President, Global Innovation Policy and Communications
Paul Misener is Amazon.com’s Vice President for Global Innovation Policy and Communications. An Amazon veteran of over 17 years, Paul served as the company’s Vice President for Global Public Policy from February 2000 to May 2016.
Both an engineer and attorney (BS, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, Princeton University, 1985; JD, George Mason University, 1993 and Distinguished Achievement Award, 2001), Paul advocates Amazon’s culture of customer-focused innovation; serves as Amazon’s most senior policy spokesperson worldwide; and guides development of Amazon global public policy positions. He has testified before the US Congress over 30 times and frequently before other policymaking bodies around the world.
Formerly a partner in the law firm of Wiley, Rein & Fielding, Paul also served as the Senior Legal Advisor to Commissioner Furchtgott-Roth of the US Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Previously, he was Intel’s Manager of Telecommunications and Computer Technology Policy and, in the mid-1990s, led the computer industry’s Internet Access Coalition, which included Intel, Microsoft, and IBM.
In the late 1980s, after helping to design and evaluate advanced radio communications systems at the Electromagnetic Compatibility Analysis Center (ECAC), Paul was a public policy specialist for the US Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and was a US delegate to several conferences of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU). In 2013, he chaired the technical subcommittee of the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) advisory committee that recommended allowing airplane passengers to use portable electronics during takeoff and landing. He is an inventor named in three patents.
Paul serves on the FCC’s Technological Advisory Council; the Board of the Public Affairs Council; the Advisory Board for Princeton University’s Center for Information Technology Policy; and the Board of the Partnership Fund for the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, where he also Chairs the Corporate Advisory Board. He is a certified meet official for Potomac Valley Swimming (USA Swimming), and serves as a meet referee and starter in both the Virginia High School League (part of the National Federation of State High School Associations) and the Northern Virginia Swimming League.
The Coles division of Wesfarmers was formed in November 2007 as a result of the acquisition of the Coles Group.
Coles provides fresh food, groceries, general merchandise, liquor, fuel and financial services to more than 21 million customers on average each week through its store network and online platform.
Coles has more than 100,000 team members and operates more than 2,400 retail outlets nationally.
John Durkan was appointed Managing Director of Coles in July 2014.
John joined Coles in July 2008 as Merchandise Director, and was subsequently appointed Chief Operating Officer in June 2013. John has added a wealth of customer, product and buying knowledge to Coles having worked for 17 years with Safeway Stores PLC in the UK, a large scale food retailer that operates supermarkets, convenience and fuel outlets. He was the Chief Operating Officer for Carphone Warehouse, the UK’s largest independent mobile phone retailer. That business spans 10 European countries with a fast paced and strong entrepreneurial culture – one that John is committed to enabling at Coles.
Alibaba Group, Australia & New Zealand
Maggie Zhou was appointed Managing Director for Australia and New Zealand in March 2016 for Alibaba Group. As one of the key veterans of the company, Maggie has witnessed major company developments as the company has expanded its businesses outside of China and as well as the progression and development of Mainland China’s e-commerce market. In her current role, as part of the company’s globalisation strategy, she is responsible for establishing a local presence for Alibaba in Australia and New Zealand to further develop infrastructure and help local merchants enter the vast China consumer market.
Prior to this role, Maggie worked closely with the Australia and New Zealand business development team on Tmall Global, a cross-border B2C business platform for Tmall, and was in charge of overall government and public affairs for the platform. She has worked closely with the Australian Trade Commission (Austrade), showcasing the value of the China e-commerce market to Australian brands and businesses. In Maggie’s earlier days with Alibaba, she helped the Group establish Taobao Marketplace in 2003 as one of the nine founders of the C2C platform, and served as Executive Assistant to Jack Ma, the founder and Executive Chairman of Alibaba, for almost five years.
Maggie joined Alibaba in early 2000 as one of the veteran employees of the company. Maggie has been a key contributor to Alibaba Group’s strategy to internationalise its business and its mission – to make it easy to do business anywhere.
Roger Corbett AO|
Mr. Corbett has been involved in the retail industry for more than 40 years. In 1984, Mr. Corbett joined the board of David Jones Australia as a Director of Operations and in 1990 was appointed to the board of Woolworths Limited and to the position of Managing Director of BigW. In 1999, Mr. Corbett was appointed Chief Executive Officer of Woolworths Limited, from which he retired in 2006. Mr. Corbett was Chairman of Fairfax Media Limited, one of Australia’s largest diversified media companies from October 2009 until 31 August 2015. Mr Corbett was a Director of the Reserve Bank of Australia until 1 December 2015, and was a director of Wal-Mart Stores until May 2016. He is Chair of Australian Leisure and Hospitality Group Pty Limited (ALH Group) and the Salvation Army Advisory Board.
Senior Vice President Global Brand
Eric Petersen is the Senior Vice President of Global Brand Programs at lululemon. He has been with the company for eleven years leading community and brand (marketing) efforts before anyone outside Vancouver had heard of it. Innovation and irreverence in the spirit of creating conversations have been the cornerstones of his leadership. He is passionate about taking the essence of the Vancouver lifestyle that is the lululemon brand to global markets. Eric graduated from Colorado College in 1990 with a Bachelor of Arts in International Political Economics and has 25 years of marketing and brand building experience which he has acquired through a variety of businesses; the first Bush administration, ProServ, EA SPORTS. Eric now spends his down time chasing his three kids around the mountains of Vancouver and Whistler.
General Manager, Stores
Whitney Walker is the General Manager of Stores at Sonos. In this role, Whitney is responsible for environmental and interactive customer experience, store design and construction, customer service and operations, retail technology, sales and profit.
Whitney started at Sonos in early 2016, with more than 22 years of experience in merchandising, retail, e-commerce operations, and brand strategy execution.
Prior to Sonos, Whitney was the Principal of Retail and Consumer Industries at Decipher Consultancy. Whitney was first introduced to Sonos as one of his clients when he helped the company conceive its retail strategy and develop its flagship store in Soho, New York. In addition to helping companies like Sonos develop retail strategies, Whitney specialized in interim retail management roles and other strategic projects. Whitney was also the Vice President of Business Strategy at Pacific Sunwear, a $1.4 billion retail enterprise, where Whitney helped to reposition the PacSun brand and transform the company’s e-commerce capabilities as part of a multi-channel strategy to maximize sales and profit.
Whitney holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in English from the University of Houston and completed the Executive Education program at Harvard Business School.
Chief Executive Officer
The Store (USA)
Gwen’s career has been devoted to heightening brand connections throughout the retail landscape. At The Store, Gwen is responsible for extending WPP’s leadership in retail innovation and supporting global resources for WPP group companies across the Americas and Australasia. Gwen is charged with identifying issues and trends most important to retailers and brands around the world.
Chief Executive Officer
Richard is a Chartered Accountant with over 20 years’ experience in retail and finance. Mr Murray joined JB Hi-Fi as CFO in 2003 and took the business through the IPO process.
Richard started his career at Deloitte as a cadet in the Audit division and progressed to the Corporate Finance group. Whilst at Deloitte, he worked with JB Hi-Fi management while preparing for the float and when the then CFO left the business, he accepted the position.
Richard was appointed to the Board of JB Hi-Fi in June 2012 and became CEO on 1 July 2014. 2016 was a big year for JB, with the $870m acquisition of The Good Guys and post the acquisition, Richard has taken on the role of Group CEO overseeing both businesses and the respective CEOs.
He is currently Chairman of the Australian Charities Fund Employee Leadership Initiative, which aims to encourage Australian businesses to set up Workplace Giving Programs. To date JB Hi-Fi’s workplace giving program, Helping Hands, has over 80% staff participation and has raised more than $13.5m for its charity partners
Chemist Warehouse Group
Jack Gance, qualified as a Pharmacist some 50 years ago, now the Chief Executive Officer of the Chemist Warehouse Group.
The origins of the Chemist Warehouse Group can be traced to a single Pharmacy in the suburbs of Melbourne and a disruptive sunglasses distribution business.
The Gance brothers unearthed Le Specs at the back of French tradeshow and began a cosmetics journey that would gather unreal momentum and fund a Pharmacy empire.
In partnership with Mario Verrocchi, Jack created My Chemist, a customer centric Pharmacy chain inspired by consumer convenience. In 2000 Jack decided that to maximise the potential of his business he needed scale.
In Australia Jack has seen a huge same store growth. He attributes this to a phenomenal growth in consumer loyalty and market share gains from other Pharmacies and supermarkets. Chemist Warehouse was opened on a discount model, supported by massive inventories that overhauled the Australian market.
Today the group has sales over A&4.5 billion, employs some 16000 staff and is the 8th biggest retailer icon in Australia.
Managing Director, Australia
Evan Hutton is managing director of Williams-Sonoma Australia, the Australian arm of kitchenware and home furnishings company Williams-Sonoma, Inc., which encompasses West Elm, Pottery Barn and Pottery Barn Kids as well as the eponymous retailer. As a group it has over 600 stores worldwide and a thriving e-commerce business to boot. Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Evan graduated from Saint Mary’s College. She started her career as a merchandiser at Levi Strauss & Co, after which she went on to complete a Masters of Business Administration at Santa Clara University. In 2003, she joined Williams-Sonoma. After working her way up through the ranks of merchandising and ecommerce within three of the company’s brands, as well as running the Outlet business for the company’s Pottery Barn brands, she left California and moved to the other side of the world to take up her current role in Sydney. Evan lives in Sydney with her husband and four-year-old daughter.
Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer
Super Retail Group
Peter Birtles joined Super Retail Group in April 2001 as Chief Financial Officer and was appointed as Group Managing Director in January 2006. Over the last ten years he has overseen the growth of the Supercheap Auto, the development of BCF and the acquisitions of Ray’s Outdoors and Rebel Sport Group. During this time, Group sales have grown from $500 million to over $2.4 billion. Peter was named 2013 CEO of the Year by The Australian’s Deal Magazine and 2014 CEO of the Year by the National Retailers Association (NRA).
Prior to joining Super Retail Group, Peter spent 12 years working with The Boots Company in the United Kingdom and Australia in a variety of senior finance, operations and information technology roles. Peter is a Chartered Accountant who started his career working with Coopers & Lybrand.
Peter is a Non-Executive Director of GWA Group Limited.
Senior Vice President & Managing Director
The Walt Disney Company Australia & New Zealand
Kylie Watson-Wheeler is Managing Director of The Walt Disney Company Australia and New Zealand. Based in Melbourne, she is responsible for driving the company’s strategy; coordinating, leading and expanding all company business divisions; overseeing Disney global franchises and seeking out new business opportunities in the region.
Kylie leads all of Disney’s activities in Australia and New Zealand, encompassing Film, TV, Digital, Consumer Products and Home Entertainment distribution and the management of the group’s TV channels.
She has broad-based expertise from multiple business areas including consumer products, marketing, sales and theatrical distribution. She joined the company in 2004, and in addition to the consumer products business, she has led the sales teams in ANZ and Publishing for the Region including South East Asia, India and Korea.
In 2013, she also served as Chief Marketing Officer for Australia and New Zealand, driving marketing strategy across the business. Previously, Kylie was director of advertising and brand management for Hallmark Cards, Inc., based at the company’s head office in Kansas City. She also has held various marketing positions at Coca-Cola Amatil and Penguin Books.
Founder & Chief Executive Officer
Chief Executive Officer
Country Road Group
Scott Fyfe (43 yrs.) is Chief Executive Officer of Country Road Group (CRG) one of Australia’s largest specialty fashion retailers comprising five iconic brands -‐ Country Road, Mimco, Politix, Trenery and Witchery.
Scott is a highly experienced retailer. He assumed the role of CEO at CRG in January 2017 having spent 20 years at major British multinational retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) where he worked in a wide variety of roles spanning buying, design, merchandising and sourcing.
Scott’s background takes in the full spectrum of omni-‐channel operations within a large scale, multi-‐brand, fashion and general merchandising business, operating in one of the world’s most innovative and competitive retail markets.
His earlier career was spent working directly for Sir Stuart Rose, then CEO and Chairman of M&S, in conjunction with the Executive Directors on the strategic direction of the business. During this time he identified new areas of growth, whilst ensuring the day-‐to-‐day operations continued to deliver business expectations. This experience, along with having successfully run women’s, men’s and kid’s global businesses, allowed Scott to gain an acute and holistic understanding of a dynamic retail business.
Scott has completed a B.A. (Hons) Marketing 2:1 at the University of Stirling in Scotland.
Ian Bailey is the Managing Director and Director of Kmart Australia, the number one discount department store in Australia and New Zealand.
Ian commenced with Kmart Australia in 2006 as the Chief Financial Officer and has played a significant role in leading the turnaround of the business including the reposition of the Kmart Australia business model, establishing an outstanding and ethical international sourcing division, and working closely with merchandise.
Ian’s experience, both national and international, covers a number of industries including retail, professional services, consulting, technology and healthcare in positions that include general management, sales, business development and project management.
Ian holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering and has completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School.
Head of E-Commerce & Vice President, Marketing
Sephora Digital SEA (SGP)
Chief Executive Officer
Billie Whitehouse is the CEO, designer and director of Wearable X. Billie was once compared to Elon Musk in Business Insider because of her specializes in the combination of hardware, software and apparel for wearable technology products. Known for her development of Nadi X and Fan Jersey recently presented at Super Bowl 50, Billie is invigorating the fashion industry and transforming it into a business focused on improving the quality of our lives.
Billie is an aesthetic specialist with a naturally inquisitive nature towards technology and innovation. As a garment engineer she strongly believes people should not have to look like the technology that they have grown to love and depend on. Billie’s designs are sharp, experimental, naturally confident and subtly feminine in appearance integrated with the latest technology.
Business Insider recently named Billie as one of the 30 most important women under 30 in tech and she was named in the 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company. The highlight for Billie in 2017 was being named one of the Most Innovative Companies in Fitness by Fast Co. Forbes recently compared Billie and her co-founder Ben Moir to Steve Jobs and Jerry Seinfeld.
Billie is a renowned keynote speaker with presentations stretching from the The New Yorker Tech Fest 2016, Fortune’s Elevate 2016, Wired UK 2015, Cannes Lions 2015/2016,, Conde Nast Digital Russia 2016, India Fashion Forum 2016 and many more.
Chief Operating Officer, Retail
Tanya Houghton leads the Greencross Retail Team, responsible for the Petbarn, City Farmers & Animates (NZ) brands. She has 20 years of experience working in retail, including 13 years with Greencross. Prior to her appointment as COO Retail, Tanya held a number of senior leadership positions in Greencross’ retail business including COO New Zealand, National Operations Manager, National Marketing Manager and National Business Development Manager.
Tanya is passionate about the evolution of business models to exceed customer expectations in a fast paced, ever changing world. Believing strongly that business strategic objectives must be aligned with “continuously evolving” customer’s needs. She has extensive experience in the evolution of customer offers.
Tanya is a highly energetic and focused leader who is passionate about long term growth. She leads by example and knows that it is only by listening to your customers, your team and taking people on the journey with you, that you can ultimately achieve your business objectives and bottom line results.
Head of Woolworths Food Academy
Kate Green commenced her career in Retail and HR in the UK working for Asda-Walmart in roles varying from buying, store management and HR. Since joining Woolworths in 2009, Kate has held HR roles across the Corporate Teams, Buying & Strategy and most recently the role of State HR Manager for NSW/ACT. Kate commenced in the new role of Head of Woolworths Food Academy, leading the Learning and Development function for the Food Group part of the business mid 2017.
Chief Executive Officer
Entrepreneur and ‘new’ retail veteran, John Winning founded Appliances Online in 2005 at just 21 years of age with a laptop, rented truck, and a 1300 number diverted to a mobile phone. Determined to shake up the existing market, John set out to offer Australians an efficient, streamlined and convenient shopping experience in an online format.
Although John found his success through Appliances Online – the online business now employs upwards of 250 people and was awarded with Best Customer Experience at the World Retail Awards in Paris in 2014 – he’s also passionate about traditional in-store retailing.
Since taking over the reigns of Winning Appliances in 2011, John has opened six additional stores and expanded the brand into Queensland, Western Australia and the ACT. On top of expansion, he has also focused on the company’s existing stores. Most notably, John set a new standard for appliance retailing globally by relaunching a new destination style showroom in Redfern where his family first opened doors in 1906. Impressively, the store has been recognised among the best retail store designs the world.
Today, John leads four separate business entities and employs around 600 staff across Australia as CEO of Winning Group; an Australian retail group including traditional bricks-and-mortar retailer Winning Appliances, pureplay online retailer Appliances Online, clearance outlet Home Clearance and national installation & logistics company Handy Crew. Recent and major awards
● John Winning Retail Executive of the Year – CEO Magazine Executive of the Year Awards (2016, 2014, 2013)
● John Winning 2016 Industry Recognition Award – ORIAS (Online Retail Industry Awards)
● Appliances Online 2016 Online Retailer of the Year – ORIAS (Online Retail Industry Awards)
● Appliances Online 2016 Best Pureplay Online Retailer – ORIAS (Online Retail Industry Awards)
● Appliances Online 2016 Hall of Fame – ORIAS (Online Retail Industry Awards)
● Appliances Online 2014 Customer Experience of the Year – World Retail Awards
● John Winning 2012 Young Executive of the Year – CEO Magazine Executive of the Year Awards Full list of awards
General Manager - Retail & Customer Service
Chief Executive Officer
Angus McKay joined 7-Eleven as CEO in 2016, and is responsible for leading the 7-Eleven team, growing the 7-Eleven brand in this market, and maintaining the company’s position as Australia’s first choice in convenience. Angus’ former roles include MD and CEO of The Skilled Group, MD of Pacific National Rail, CFO for Asciano Limited, and various senior roles at Foster’s Group, including CFO.
Director Loyalty, Data and Digital Media
Group. As head of Woolworths Rewards, she manages one of Australia’s leading retail loyalty programs with a database of more than nine million members. Her core focus is leveraging customer data to deliver an extensive below-the-line 1:1 sales platform.
Ingrid has a long history in customer-centric, data-driven retail strategies and previously launched My Dan Murphy’s as Head of Loyalty at Woolworths Liquor. Prior to joining Woolworths Limited, Ingrid was General Manager of Customer Relationship Management and Loyalty at Coles, where she managed Flybuys. She previously worked as a Senior Executive at Accenture, specialising in customer growth strategies, data analytics and change management.
Dr. Michael Schaper|
Michael’s work has a special focus on small business, franchising, industry associations and business liaison with the national competition and consumer protection regulator. Dr Schaper was first appointed to the ACCC in July 2008.
A previous president of the Small Enterprise Association of Australia & New Zealand, he also served as Small Business Commissioner for the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), chairperson of the ACT Small & Micro-Business Advisory Council, and a director of the International Council for Small Business. In 2009 he was named the COSBOA ‘National Small Business Champion’.
He is currently an Adjunct Professor with Curtin University and a senior honorary research fellow at the University of Western Australia. His latest books are Competition Law, Regulation & SMEs in the Asia-Pacific (2016); Entrepreneurship & Small Business: Asia-Pacific (2014); and Governments, SMEs and Entrepreneurship Development (2012).
eBay Australia & New Zealand
General Manager Retail Operations
Karen is an experienced retail executive, with a grounding in finance, strategy and operations.
Having commenced her career in Andersen and later Ernst & Young, Karen joined Rebel Sport Limited as CFO overseeing a tremendous period of growth and multiple ownership changes. Karen then joined Woolworths Limited as the General Manager of Strategy for BIG W, then Acting Managing Director of BIG W and later General Manager of Replenishment for the Woolworths Food & Liquor businesses.
Karen joined Caltex Australia Limited one year ago as the General Manager of Retail Operations, responsible for the operation of Caltex’s 800 sites. Karen is part of the retail leadership team overseeing Caltex’s transformation to become a world class convenience retailer.
Karen is passionate about retail, people (particularly diversity) and sport.
Executive Manager Loyalty Services
Rachel has more than 17 years’ experience in leadership, strategy, commercial and customer facing roles across the Qantas Group. She is a Chartered Accountant and is passionate about leveraging data and technology to create leading customer experiences that drive tangible commercial value. Rachel has led customer strategy, data and analytics for the Qantas Frequent Flyer program and has overseen the launch of new ventures including Qantas Cash and Qantas epiQure. She has a deep knowledge of what it takes for brands to create loyal customers and is currently responsible for program design and retail products and experiences for Qantas Frequent Flyer members. Rachel is also a Director of the Qantas Superannuation Board and Chairs its Member Experience Committee.
Chief Executive Officer
Adairs Retail Group
Mark was appointed CEO and a Director of Adairs in November 2016.
Mark joined Adairs as Finance Manager in 2007 and has also held the roles of Head of Merchandise Planning and GM Retail Operations.
Mark was previously Finance and Operations Manager with the Sovereign Hotel Group, Financial Controller at River Capital and Manager at Deloitte.
Mark is qualified as a Chartered Accountant and graduated from the University of Melbourne with a Bachelor of Commerce.
Chief Executive Officer
Chris Garlick has been CEO of Starbucks Australia since 2014. Chris’ appointment to the role was part of the acquisition of Starbucks Australia by the Withers Group. It was also the beginning of the transformation of the business, after it had failed to gain traction since the brand entered Australia in 2000. Under Chris’ leadership, the transformation of Starbucks Australia has been characterised by a deep understanding of the economics of the local market, as well as an unrelenting focus on delighting customers with exceptional experiences in stores, consistent delivery of high quality beverages, and the physical and digital engagement of customers in a way that has strong resonance with target groups. By the end of 2017, Starbucks Australia will have reached 34 stores; beyond that, there is an exciting pipeline of future stores in locations exposed to high customer traffic flows.
Prior to Starbucks, Chris was General Manager of the Non-Food business at Coles Supermarkets for 2.5 years. This role provided the opportunity for Chris to be a prominent leader and active contributor to the remarkable performance trajectory of that business during that period of time.
All of this was after Chris “grew up” within BP over 16 years. Over his time in BP, Chris moved from a graduate intake in the very early stages of his career, to running the Retail business in Australia. Notable highlights were his 6 years in Senior Marketing and Sales roles in BP America based in Chicago, including 4 years as Vice President of Product & Offer Development; and leading the Australian Petrol & Convenience Business to deliver material profit growth through a highly engaged team.
Chris has an MBA from the Australian Graduate School of Management (AGSM), and has spent time at Kellogg Graduate School of Management undertaking various Sales & Marketing programs. His undergraduate degree is a Bachelor of Arts, with Honours in Politics.
Chris’ favourite activities include spending time with his family and long distance running. And if both of these things can be done with a beach nearby, that is his ultimate.
Co- Chief Executive Officer
Harris Farm Markets
Guzman Y Gomez
When New Yorker Steven Marks settled in Australia in 2002, he saw a gap in the Australian market for fresh, fast, delicious Mexican food. He opened his first Guzman y Gomez in Sydney’s Newtown in 2006 with partner Robert Hazan.
Guzman y Gomez has today grown to more than 85 restaurants in Australia; 4 in Tokyo, 5 Singapore; and has more international expansion on the horizon.
Steven has been passionately involved in every stage of building this rapidly growing business. Guzman y Gomez is redefining fast food through the quality of its fresh produce; investment in technology, speed of delivery, and the authenticity of the Mexican experience.
Steven grew up in NYC. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and Economics. He worked 10 years in finance (SAC Capital, Cheyne Capital) in the US and London.
Steven relocated to Sydney in 2002 where he launched and sold several successful businesses. Today Steven is committed to taking the Guzman y Gomez experience to the world… and redefining fast food along the way.
Chief Information Officer
A retailer of more than 40 years, Lou Jardin has worked for more than a decade as a regional manager with Coles and was CEO of IGA for 13 years, before leaving for SPAR Australia in 2010. Following his departure from IGA, Metcash pursued court action that saw Jardin tied up in legal battles. Ever since, he’s been on the road to repair as Managing Director of SPAR Australia’s independent grocery network.
Chief Executive Officer
Vice President, Retail
Frances is the Vice President of Retail, managing Optus retail footprint, performance, design and customer experience in the retail channel. Previously, Frances held the position of Head of Channel Experience and Transformation, focusing on driving operational improvements, customer experience initiatives and looking at opportunities to transform the customer experience in a multichannel environment.
Her accountabilities include strategic thought leadership, performance and business ownership, delivering ‘end-to-end’ capability to help the retail channel meet customer’s expectations in an increasingly digital and progressively competitive industry. Other functions in her portfolio include service strategy & change readiness, developing innovative solutions to improve customer experience and Touch point NPS as well as simplifying processes for frontline staff.
During her three plus years in the Optus team, Frances has led the creation and execution of strategies to support sales, including the transformation of Optus’ retail footprint and store design, and delivery of ‘Brilliant Service’ in alignment with Optus’ rebranding.
Frances has extensive experience in the telecommunications industry. In her 20 years in sales, she was a top performing sales executive before going on to lead State based teams across all channels, online environments, customer care teams and Business strategy. Frances has been a Board member of the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Authority and Governance Committee, ensuring industry standards and customer standards are upheld. Additionally, she has led large billing and transformation projects across Australia
Head of HR Oceania
Cedric has been involved in the Retail industry for the last 15 years as an HRIS and HR professional. In France, he worked with the Casino Group to redesign sales incentives for the franchisee network, and implemented the HR centre of expertise for the supermarkets. He then joined Nestle Nespresso headquarters in 2012 in Lausanne, Switzerland, and launched global initiatives around sales incentives for the customer-facing staff and workforce planning management.
In Australia since 2015, Cedric is now the Nespresso Head of HR & Training for Oceania (Australia and New Zealand) In a very competitive coffee market, he aims at providing the company with the vision and tools to support the human aspects of the customer experience transformation, linking Nespresso ‘s People and customer strategies.
Recently, Nespresso has invested in the ability to create effective and entirely immersive educational experience for employees through the usage of Virtual Reality (VR) in its mixed of training methods.
Former Principal Adviser
Warren Hogan is a Principal Advisor in the Sydney Office of The Australian Government Treasury. Warren joined Treasury in October 2016. Warren works across Groups within Treasury and has recently undertaken work on foreign investment and macroeconomic conditions.
Prior to joining Treasury Warren was the Chief Economist of the ANZ Bank and Head of ANZ Research. In this capacity Warren was responsible for a team of economists and strategists within the Institutional Division covering the economy, and commodity and financial markets. ANZ Research is a global team with a strong Asia focus with staff located in China, Hong Kong, Singapore as well as in Australia and New Zealand. ANZ Research is highly regarded as a provider of insight and analysis recognised with industry awards across many markets.
Warren is well known to a global customer base having travelled extensive over the past 15 years providing research and advice to a wide range of corporations and money managers.
Warren is based in Sydney where he lives with his wife and 2 daughters. Warren is an Adjunct Professor in the University of Technology Sydney Business School and is a member of the Board of Avondale Golf Club in Sydney.
Chief Digital Officer
Global Marketing Director
Currently Global Marketing Director at T2 Tea, a global luxury retailer offering the widest collection of innovative teas and teawares from around the world.
I am responsible for harnessing and cultivating T2’s brand essence and turning it into an incredible end-to-end customer experience across all touch points. I spend my days unearthing new opportunities for T2 to share its unique brand experience with tea lovers around the globe.
Before T2, I was Global Vice President of the Drug Channel at Unilever, a €3 billion business. As a senior international business leader with over 20 years’ experience, I have driven the marketing endeavors of some of the world’s biggest, most successful blue-chip companies including Unilever, the Coca-Cola Company and L’Oréal. Over the years, I have spent time immersed in roles spanning retail, sales and marketing with local, regional and global remits.
Head of Data Product
Former Retail Director
Karen Matthews has over 22 years experience in national and international retailing, franchising and strategic brand management and summarises her career as having 4 distinct chapters –
– Learning the art of retailing, buying and marketing within the Myer Group;
– Brand management, licensing and product development with FJ Benjamin, a family owned fashion & fashion accessories group, where she set up and ran their Licensing business with brands such as Guess and Gucci
– 10 years as CEO of skincare company Ella Bache where she developed and launched Australia’s first skincare franchise model
– And most recently Karen had 2 ½ years as Retail Director of Freedom Furniture, where she led their 50 stores, 1200 staff and was responsible for all things retail, believing that the customer experience is everything.
In 2004 Karen was named NSW Telstra Business Woman of the Year, in 2005 PWC Franchise Woman of the Year and in 2007 PWC Australian Franchise Woman of the Year for the pioneering franchise strategy she implemented at Ella Bache On moving from one chapter to the next, Karen has been proud to tick off a list of personal and career achievements, with every stage, she believes, shaping her for the next.
Karen is recognised in the business community as an innovative, passionate leader with strong operational and strategic skills and operates as she calls it by an intuitive style of “inside out” leadership. Karen is passionate about brands and people and loves the challenge of change. She is high energy, walks the talk and as Karen admits, is painfully determined – she will never give up.
Karen is also the extremely proud mum and number 1 fan of her chlldren Isabella and Harrison and over the last 5 yrs she has become obsessed with Crossfit, where she finished 57th in the World in her Division last year. Karen loves what she does and would like to think she can inspire everyone to believe in themselves and be the best that they can be,
National Marketing Manager
Karl Winther was appointed National Marketing Manager of Officeworks in 2012 and has 20 years’ experience in retail across both marketing and merchandise buying.
Officeworks is Australia’s leading retailer and supplier of office products and solutions for home, workplace and education needs. Officeworks has more than 160 stores nationally, an online platform with more than 40,000 products and employs more than 7000 team members.
Karl leads a team that plays a key role in bringing to life Officeworks’ purpose of ‘helping make bigger things happen’ and oversees all facets of Officeworks marketing including strategy, advertising, PR and social, CRM, brand, internal communications and CSR. Prior to Officeworks, Karl was with Myer for more than a decade in roles across advertising, loyalty and merchandise buying.
E-Commerce Fulfilment Consultant
Author of Retail's Last Mile
In an age where the traditional shopping trip is being disrupted by e-commerce, Jonathan gives retailers the strategies to stay ahead. The 25-year history of e-commerce shows that the most important element is fulfilment, the costly and complex operations that start after a sale is made online.
As a specialist in the field, Jonathan realised fulfilment was crucial to generating repeat business and long-term profitability, but is often given a lower priority than making the sale itself. So, he decided to do something about it by supporting businesses to thrive in e-commerce fulfilment.
Jonathan has both developed retail strategy and led the teams and operations that deliver the service to customers, giving him a unique perspective. Jonathan has worked in retail businesses in the UK, US and Australia for over fifteen years, and was part of the team that developed the operating model for Tesco.com, a global pioneer of online grocery retail. Jonathan is also the author of Retail’s Last Mile: Why Online Shopping Will Exceed Our Wildest Predictions (2016), a book which explores the disruption of traditional retail by online shopping.
Retailers Jonathan has worked with, as a team member or consultant, include Myer, Coles, Super Retail Group, Aussie Farmers Direct, Tesco, Tesco.com and Safeway.com. Prior to his career in retail, Jonathan was an investment banker for Goldman Sachs and strategy consultant for Arkwright.
Jonathan has an MA in Economics from Cambridge University and an MBA from INSEAD.
Former General Manager Marketing
Murray Chenery is a proven marketer with an acute understanding of brand DNA and strategy.
He has over 25 years experience in retailing and other industries, delivering innovative, differentiated and award-winning marketing campaigns to the Australian marketplace.
From 2001 to 2012, he worked at the marketing helm of one of Australia’s most-recognized retail brands, Target, as General Manager of Marketing.
Murray’s strong strategic focus helped shape Target’s enviable progression from a low-end, discount, big-box retailer to a fashionable, mid-market, iconic Australian brand.
During his time at Target, he was the architect of their very successful ‘100% Happy’ campaign, and the strategic force behind the ‘Designers for Target’ program, commencing
with Stella McCartney.
Murray joined CPA Australia in late 2012 as Executive General Manager, Brand, responsible for developing and driving strategies to grow membership and building the CPA Australia brand as the global professional accounting designation for strategic business leaders.
Murray has considerable experience using the full spread of paid, owned and earned communication channels as well as overseeing the development of many marketing initiatives, including: customer loyalty, digital marketing, web, social media and other customer-interfacing strategies.
Head of Design – Specialty Lighting Group
Liam was introduced to the art of industrial design early in life through his family boat building and design business Gilcraft Boats (est.1956).
Liam forged his lighting design career in 2011 after being awarded the Winner of the 2010 Melbourne Design Awards,’ with his ‘Falling Leaf Light’ one of his undergraduate design projects.
Liam’s lighting experience begun in a boutique leadership role designing and coordinating custom luminaire and lighting designs at a prominent Melbourne lighting business, delivering a vast array of lighting installations across Australia and New Zealand facilitating and collaborating with retail clients such as Aesop, Marcs, Lululemon and Grill’d, generating an extensive lighting portfolio.
Liam extended his professional lighting career exploring new opportunities at one of Australia’s most prestigious architectural lighting consultancy firms. There he specialised in lighting commercial exterior precincts, façades and interior architecture.
In 2016, Liam joined the Retailite team as Head of Design. This dynamic role encompasses lighting design, product development, and sees Liam manage a talented team who work across a range of exciting projects in the retail sector.
Liam is also completing his Master of Business Administration at the University of Melbourne, Melbourne Business School’. Looking to the future, leadership, entrepreneurship and business strategy in the design and construction industry are Liam’s interests and career objectives leading into 2020+.
Chief Executive Officer
Andrew joined eStar in October 2014 as CEO. Andrew has 25 years experience in retail, eCommerce, and consulting in Australasia, Asia and the UK.
Prior to joining eStar, he was CEO Multichannel (and CEO Torpedo 7 Group) at The Warehouse Group (TWG) leading their digital expansion across 14 retail and wholesale brands, a mix of omnichannel and pureplay businesses, and a mix of existing, acquired and newly launched brands. Prior to TWG, he founded, then led a new category management business to over $20m in sales in 2 years which was successfully sold in 2012.
Andrew has also held executive level roles in IT, merchandise, sourcing, strategy and supply chain in retail, as well as senior consulting roles both independently and with KPMG in Asia and Australasia.
Sales Director Retail, ANZ
David Bray is the Sales Director, Retail for NetSuite in ANZ and is responsible for the retail go-to-market strategy aimed at delivering ongoing operational value to retail customers and prospects. In this role David will be working closely with the global NetSuite retail team to bring our best of breed cloud solutions to the local market.
David has nearly 20 years of experience in working with many leading retailers in ANZ and across Asia to transform their businesses by blending leading practices with retail solutions to deliver measurable results. David has extensive experience in key retail business process areas such as Merchandise and Supply Chain Management as well as Planning and Assortment.
Prior to joining NetSuite David worked for Teradata, OLR (an Oracle Retail SI) and JDA Software.
David has a Bachelor of Computer Systems Engineering degree from the University of Technology Sydney.
Andrew Gorecki, MD of Retail Directions, has worked with the retail industry since 1985.
Industry insiders appreciate his strategic advice and insights, as he lives and breathes for the industry. Andrew was instrumental in establishing Retail Directions in 1994 and received a nomination for the Australian Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2010. He has a Masters of Engineering degree in industrial engineering and IT. Between 2008 and 2017 Andrew was a non-executive director of Reece Ltd and its subsidiary companies. He has published numerous books and articles.
One of Australia’s leading industry experts on digital, marketing, brand experience and creative technology, Brian Vella is the Managing Director of AKQA Asia Pacific. AKQA is a brand experience agency inspired by the imaginative application of art and science. Home to over 2,000 professionals in 21 international studios.
In Asia Pacific, these include Sydney, Melbourne, Shanghai, Tokyo, Auckland, Singapore and India. Brian provides digital leadership to many of APAC’s leading brands including Bunnings, Tourism Australia, Bupa, Officeworks, NAB and Optus.
Globally, AKQA work with the world’s most innovative brands including Nike, Virgin, Rolls Royce, TOMS, Apple, Barclay’s Bank, Beats, and Red Bull. Brian is passionate about marketing and commerce in the digital age, and the transformational role it plays. He’s growth minded and a business builder.
His career began at a pure-play ecommerce company in the middle of the first dot-com boom. At this time he was inspired to help other companies make the most of the possibilities.
Brian holds a combined Management and Marketing degree from Monash University, and has undertaken executive education at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.
National Sales Manager - Retail
Natalie Griffin is the Head of Retail at Gunnebo Australia, who provide security solutions to customers that add value through innovative technology. Natalie is a passionate pursuer of all things Retail, she thrives on helping customers understand their business by offering solutions that drive productivity and deliver cost efficiencies in areas of Cash Management, Electronic Security, Entrance Control, Security Doors & Partitions and Safes & Vaults.
Sales Director Inventory Intelligence ANZ
Tyco Retail Solutions
Steve Schenk is Sales Director Inventory Intelligence ANZ – Inventory Specialist for Tyco Retail Solutions Australia New Zealand (ANZ). In his role, Steve has helped position the Tyco Retail Solutions Inventory platform, TrueVUE, to be the market leader in the adoption and implementation of RFID applications for retailers in ANZ.
Steve has spent over 25 years in the apparel industry spanning sales, design, production, sourcing, supply chain and import and distribution. More recently he has dedicated the better part of the last decade advocating for RFID, data accuracy and the Internet of Things to drive brick and mortar and Omni channel operational, sales and cost savings benefits for retailers locally and globally.
His expertise across the scope of retail operations is derived from working for and with organisations such as Inditex Zara, Paul Smith, NBA, MLB, PAS Group and Checkpoint Systems. He is highly regarded in the industry and has delivered numerous key notes on the benefits of RFID in retail and supply chain.
Head of ANZ
Pressy Sankaran is Criteo’s Head for Australia and New Zealand. As Head of ANZ, he is responsible for developing and implementing market level, performance driven solutions in the ANZ region. He is also responsible for developing and implementing commercial strategies that hero Criteo’s overarching goals and objectives, in addition to overseeing a variety of departments within the organisation.
Pressy started his career with Criteo in 2012 at the company’s New York office. There he was responsible for developing strategic relationships with key businesses in the ecommerce industry.
In 2014 Pressy moved to Sydney where he was tasked with building upon the network of existing relationships Criteo had, as well as driving business growth across the region. He also spends a lot of time educating and evangelising the market about the benefits and potential of digital performance advertising.
Prior to working at Criteo, Pressy had ten years of experience in the performance marketing space in New York. This spanned several channels including search, retargeting, prospecting display and email and affiliate marketing. He has a wealth of experience across both the US and ANZ markets, and has seen the evolution of performance marketing expand from simple ROI models to complex, consumer oriented strategy.
On a personal note, Pressy loves to travel and has a keen interest in art. He has a business degree, majoring in advertising management from Portland State University. Pressy was appointed as Criteo’s Commercial Director for ANZ in 2016.
Chief Technology Officer, APAC
Rafi is Dynatrace’s APAC Chief Technical Officer and VP of Solution Sales. Based in Sydney Australia, Rafi joined Dynatrace in 2007 and has more than 20 years’ experience in the IT industry focusing on Business, Application and IT Service Management. His experience includes a number of Australian based technology startup innovators. Prior to joining Dynatrace, he held senior management at Proxima Technology, a technology startup that pioneered the area of Business Service Management. He is a recognised thought leader and has published many articles, white papers and is a regular industry keynote speaker and commentator in IT and business publications.
Retailers remain at the forefront of Australia’s economic performance. Amidst turbulent socio-economic landscapes, diverse political movements and changing trends in global markets retailers are having to combine an informed borderless outlook whilst retaining local customer focus. What are the current economic and social trends affecting retail? How should retailers position themselves to confront them? Is it necessary to be globally focused? What are the international growth opportunities for Australia’s retailers and which retailers are best positioned to capitalise from them?
The retail landscape remains as competitive as it has ever been. To acquire and sustain advantage, industry leaders must embrace constant strategic renewal. How are retailers transforming to maximise their engagement opportunities with customers? What can established retailers learn from startups? What are the new hallmarks of a seamless shopping experience? How should retail executives ensure their planning remains proactive and responsive to their market? Which organisations are ahead of the curve in retail planning?
Emerging consumer behaviours, intense competition and transformative technologies have created a busy content environment for shoppers. Facing a battle for consumer attention from both inside and outside the retail sector, retailers are having to extend their influence across multiple media platforms whilst personalising their content to increasingly diverse audiences. Which marketing strategies are customers responding to? How can retailers adapt to compete with the boom in entertainment content? As a new shopping generation emerges, and with less opportunity to capture their attention, how can personalised marketing experiences set retailers apart? As marketing methods proliferate through sponsorships and partnerships, how can retailers ensure marketing continues to reflect their unique values?
From streamlining supply chains to promoting superior customer experiences, technology is providing retailers a crucial avenue that generates sustained advantage. Accelerated innovation has revolutionised the in-store experience; Beacon technology, mobile platforms and augmented reality provide multiple mediums for engagement with customers and real-time feedback for retailers. How can retailers capture and leverage data to improve their customer journey? What are the risks in embracing an retail strategy that is too digitally focused? Where is the harmony between people and technology in creating an innovation-led business?
Despite intense digital proliferation, the role of frontline team members remains more important than ever. Professional, passionate retail teams support a customer’s journey and a brand’s reputation. How can retail leaders build motivated, knowledgeable teams? How do positive employee-customer relationships become a hallmark of an organisation’s culture? In what ways can brand ambassadors compliment traditional retail strategy? How can the industry promote retailing as a career path?
As a mobile, digitally savvy consumer base, today’s customers have an unprecedented power to reshape a dynamic, interconnected shopping experience. Consumers reward retailers that prioritise customer-centricity across the physical shopfront, online store and delivery channels. How do organisational structures promote customer-centricity and what are the barriers to avoid? What are the hallmarks of a customer-centric strategy and how do you measure it? How can retailers leverage mobility, personalisation, creative content and payment innovation to put customers first? Is customer-centricity always a good thing?
Meeting changing customer demands in a dynamic environment presents growth opportunities beyond the traditional retail model. New technologies, customer data and mobile platforms enable retailers to diversify not only into new sectors such as financial services, lifestyle, food and delivery, but also into new global markets, such as China. Where are the natural opportunities for diversification? How should retailers structure the expansion of their service base? What opportunities can acquisitions and partnerships present to an established brand? How can this expansion of services strengthen the relationship between a brand and a customer?
As the boundaries of physical and digital dissolve, the retail experience will further embed itself into the consumer mindset, enabling constant interaction and transformative opportunity. Data analytics, the internet of things, augmented reality and drones are all functions poised to provide unparalleled advantage to agile retailers in stock-taking, consumer engagement and delivery versatility. What role do retail executives have in positioning their businesses to embrace change? What retail functions will become irrelevant, and which ones will become critical? Will the face of retail be recognisable in a decade?
Customer loyalty is in the midst of a renaissance, spurred by the allure of new technologies, customer data and measurability. What are the hallmarks of a leading, modern loyalty program? How can multi-function loyalty programs be implemented to cater for different customer preferences? How can executives ensure loyalty programs remain responsive to a changing consumer market? What opportunities does technology open up in revolutionising our approach to brand loyalty?
Harmony between physical and digital retail strategies is critical in building a seamless customer journey. As the store is competing with leisure, food and beverage business for traffic, the format is under increasing pressure to deliver the ultimate customer experience. How can retailers further integrate both digital and physical stores? How can the human experience become truly multi-channel and be a defining feature of a retail brand? Does the nature of mobile retail change the way physical and digital storefronts are designed? How will store design reach and meet customers increasing expectations?
In a retail environment shaped by transparency and accessibility it is essential that a retailer’s merchandise strategy reflects the instant demands of the market. How have product lines adapted to consumer behaviour? How have consumer insights, payment technology and data changed the relationship between retailer and supplier? As click -and -collect, next -day delivery and real -time stock counts all become the industry standard will retailers be able to continue fulfil consumer expectations? How has leading merchandising strategy reinvented itself to keep up with changing marketing strategies? Does the relationship between retailers, supply chain managers and product manufacturers face disruption in the future?
Mastercard Australasia is an innovative, technology and services provider focused on broader payment opportunities in the retail, government and finance industries. In 2018 Mastercard will continue to put tech and innovation front and centre, with Sydney becoming one of Mastercard’s five global centres for innovation with the opening of the Mastercard Global Tech Hub and Innovation Centre.
eStar is Australasia’s leading specialist eCommerce solutions provider, delivering outstanding experiences with some of the region’s best brands, through a combination of thought leadership, user experience, development, design and partners.
Retail Directions’ consumer-centric system has helped many retailers improve and expand their businesses. RD’s platform includes integrated selling, analytics, merchandise, logistics and inventory management, as well as promotions and customer loyalty.
Oracle NetSuite provides a suite of cloud-based financials / Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), HR and omnichannel commerce software that runs the business of companies in more than 100 countries.
We are an ideas and innovations company. We exist to create the future with our clients. Our work is the imaginative application of art and science. We value excellence in innovation, service, quality, thought.
Retailite uses the best in products, design and technology to assess, shape and create your customers retail experience through bespoke lighting solutions.
Leading global provider of analytics-based Loss Prevention, Inventory Intelligence and Traffic Insights delivered by TrueVUE enterprise wide reporting platform.
Criteo, the leader in commerce marketing, is building the highest performing and open commerce marketing ecosystem to drive profits and sales for retailers and brands.
Kronos is the global leader in delivering workforce management solutions in the cloud. Tens of thousands of organisations in more than 100 countries use Kronos to control labour costs, minimise compliance risk, and improve workforce productivity.
Celebrating its 7th year, the Retail Leaders Forum is unparalleled in the level of delegates and speakers it attracts.
From knowledge sharing, to brand exposure and lead generation, sponsors have an effective platform to engage this decision making audience, before, during and after the event.
As marketing platform to demonstrate expertise, credibility and grow your business within the Retail industry, the Retail Leaders Forum offers unrivalled cut-through.
This event was sold out in 2017
Tim Lockwood – Commercial Manager
Tel: 02 8004 3172
|Packages||Standard Price Per Delegate|
|Retailer - 1-2 Delegates||$2200 + GST|
|Retailer - 3-5 Delegates||$1980 + GST|
|Retailer - 6-9 Delegates||$1760 + GST|
|Retailer - 10+ Delegates||$1540 + GST|
|Non-Retailer Attendance *||N/A|
* Non-Retailer Attendance: The Retail Leaders Forum is open to retailers only. If you are a service
Connect Events is part of Connect Media Group Pty Ltd
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