We all attend conferences, thought leadership events and summits, each declaring themselves indispensible to our industry. And many of them are. But I submit that Shoptalk is a different beast. It is refreshing and original, probably because the brilliance behind the brand is an outsider to retail. Anil Aggarwal’s innovation is to apply the success he has had in producing other successful industry events to the challenge of helping retail leaders reimagine, reinvent and re-engineer their businesses. This is no small task, as I have repeatedly reminded my readers every chance I get. What makes this experience fresh is the mash-up of legacy retailers and “just born” entrepreneurs in a spirited discussion and environment where partnerships, collaborations and deals are a clear and present possibility.
Plus Shoptalk is a lot of fun. Where else are you going to get a line-up that ranges from Lionel Richie and behemoth Amazon to so many of our good friends in the industry including Mindy Grossman, CEO & Director of HSN, Inc.; Devin Wenig, President & CEO of eBay; Michael Evans, President of Alibaba Group; Calvin McDonald, President & CEO of Sephora Americas; Brian Cornell, Chairman & CEO of Target; and Kevin Mansell, CEO & President of Kohl’s; Ken Worzel, President, Nordstrom.com; Marc Lore, President & CEO, Walmart eCommerce U.S…plus about 330 other interesting, dynamic and forward-thinking speakers.
So for my money, it’s a rare thing to put both the newcomers and the veterans on the main stage to explore how we are going to reinvigorate our industry. We all need to be part of this critical discussion since there is so much at stake.
Join me at Shoptalk at the Aria, Las Vegas on March 19-22, as we continue the industry narrative centered on the evolution of how consumers discover, shop and buy. You won’t be alone! This year’s event is expected to draw more than 5,000 attendees. That’s a lot of enthusiastic intellectual capital. The attendees are as key to the content as the guys presenting; collectively we need to halt the race to the bottom and pull ourselves together to recreate what used to be our nation’s most well-loved pastime.