Retail Scene: Spring Executive Summit

— July 27, 2006

More than 100 retail executives from a spectrum of industry segments gathered at the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club in March to network with peers and hear from industry experts on topics surrounding the theme: Strengthening Your Value Proposition in a Customer-Driven Landscape.

The three-day event featured a well-rounded agenda beginning with an opening keynote by Robyn Waters, author of the book The Trendmasters Guide, and former vice president of trend, design and product development for Target. Also on day one, a retailer panel discussed current trends in contactless payment. Guy Festa from Wawa, George Medairy from Sheetz and Bob OHern from Ritz Camera Centers shared what theyve learned from their recent implementations. A group of top industry analysts then gave their perspective on how Wall Street activity affects the retail industry. Sessions ended with Ken Watson, director, Industry Forum, introducing participants to the inside scoop on Zara, a fast-moving European retail success story.

Day two featured a keynote by John Rand, director of retail insights for Management Ventures, titled: Changing the Game at Retail: Multiple Paths to Growth. A supplier panel, including executives from Coty, Pepsico and Kenneth Cole, tackled the issue of retailer/supplier collaboration. Event attendees also were treated to a discussion on Multi-Channel Metrics by Shelley Nandkeolyar, president, Home Depot Direct Brands, and Don Courtney, CIO, The Finish Line. Another session focused on growth strategies, led by Cathy Witt, CIO, CompUSA and Zeke Duge, CIO, Smart and Final.

Attendees also had the opportunity to network with peers during the popular Topic Table luncheons where lively and productive discussions centered on topics including RFID, price & revenue optimization, contactless payment, transforming legacy systems and demand-driven workforce management.

The conference concluded with a third-day keynote by Marilyn Iverson, chief operating officer, Army & Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES). The closing panel was led by Robert Garf, research director, AMR Research, who moderated a session on customer loyalty topics discussed by Bob Anderson, director, of CRM, Stop & Shop Supermarket, Kevin Ertell, director of interactive marketing, loyalty and CRM, Borders, and Meredith Jurek, director, consumer marketing, Best Buy.

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