NAB shares learnings from the World Retail Congress and Awards
Nov 21st, 07:28
Issued on behalf of Newspaper Advertising Bureau c
The World Retail Congress, held in Paris this year, hosted over 1200 delegates from 48 countries for retailers across the globe to share and learn from their peers. John Bowles and Gill Randall, Joint MD’s from the Newspaper Advertising Bureau, attended the congress and came home with several insights.
“One of the presenters, Jacques-Antoine Granjon, founder and CEO of vente-privee.com, told the World Retail Congress delegates that the first wave of the internet is at an end,” said John.
The gist of his learnings included e-commerce simply being a new distribution channel. He put the success of his own online business down to understanding the fundamentals of the business. He also said that customer service is crucial and warned: “You need to answer your customer, not with a stupid mail that you send to everyone but with a voice that makes them know you are behind the screen and taking care of them.”
Carrefour Chairman and CEO George Plassat presented his topic on ‘The Hypermarket is not Dead’. Delivering his keynote address on the opening day of the World Retail Congress, Plassat insisted that ‘clicks and mortar are the future,’ alluding to the dynamics between online shopping and physical stores.
‘The key is to make these stores interesting, efficient and serving the needs of all our customers.’ Plassat was also at pains to stress that the ‘one size fits all’ approach does not work as firms expand globally, and warned that companies should not underestimate the power of domestic rivals.
He highlighted two trends in emerging markets that would create a US$18 trillion opportunity - urbanisation and the rise of the middle class. “Over the next 15 years consumers in emerging markets will migrate from the periphery of the global economy to its centre. By 2025 consumption in emerging markets will have more than doubled from 2010, jumping from US$12 trillion to US$30trillion,” he said.
“Included in the congress was the Word Retail Awards which celebrate inspiring retail excellence,” says John.
French luxury group LVMH won ‘International Retailer of the Year’ award while Whole Foods, the US organic food company, scooped the prestigious award for ‘Retailer of the Year’, following in the footsteps of leading retailers Tesco and Inditex.
“There were a few highlights for South Africa as well with Woolworths being awarded a finalist place in the CSR Initiative of the Year for its ‘My School My Village My Planet’ loyalty card and it was also fantastic to see the Mr Price Group being identified as one of the ‘Emerging Market Retailers of the Year’.”
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