Retailers brace for digital evolution
Ehda M. Dagooc (The Freeman) - July 10, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — On the heels of the rise of digital retailing and the Gen-Z, the Philippine Retailers Association (PRA) is calling on all retailers in the country to participate in the 26th National Retail Conference and Expo (NRCE) 2019.

Slated on August 15-16 at the SMX Convention Center Manila, PRA president Rosemarie Bosch Ong said this is to protect their respective businesses from being hit by the evolution of digital retailing.

PRA is bringing in about a dozen foreign experts to give fresh perspectives on the retail industry at the height of digital retail competition.

Dubbed “Retail Reimagined”, attendees to the two-day conference will get a rare chance of learning first hand from experts innovative ways to tackle new challenges in the retail scene brought.

“The concepts of omni-channel, influencer marketing, new shopper currency, velocity consumer, neuroscience of retail marketing and marketing to the Generation Z are surely baffling and puzzling as they sound to us retailers today. We are hoping that with what we will learn from our speakers at the 26th NRCE, we will have a better grasp of what these new concepts are so we could adapt accordingly,” Ong stressed.

Keynoting the conference on the first day of the conference is Spain’s Jesus Vega, technology evangelist and former managing director of Zara Inditex. He will focus on the topic “Surfing the Digital Transformation Tsunami in Retail.”

“Creativity is a bird that cannot be kept in a cage. And most of the companies are more similar now to prisons than amusement parks. The digital revolution means that most of the processes that we do now can be done better by AI and robots. The difference will be made through creativity. That´s the challenge. Is your company an amusement park?” Vega shared in giving a snapshot of what he will be presenting at the NRCE.

Nikki Baird, vice president for Retail Innovation of the US-based Aptos, will share fresh perspectives on the topic “Now. New. Next: Digital Trends Impacting the Stores”.

Claire Boscq-Scott, director and founder of The Busy Queen Bee will delve on the topic “Designing Experiences to Optimize Customers’ Emotional System.”  Charlie Clark, trend specialist at WGSN in Hong Kong will speak on “The High Velocity Consumer”; Elysha Young, trends manager at Mintel in Singapore, will expound on the “Trends  Redefining Retail in 2019 and Beyond”, and George Pepes, Retail Solutions Marketing lead at Zebra Technologies, will talk about “Exploring Shoppers’ and Retailers’ Divergent Views of the In-Store Experience”.

Other foreign speakers are Australian Mark Gentle, vice president and managing director of Checkpoint Systems, who will discuss “How Data is Driving Changes in Loss Prevention & Retail Operations”, and Posiflex Technology Group Chairman and CEO Owen Chen, who will disclose the “21st Century POS Trends.”

The annual NRCE is the biggest and the longest-running retail event organized by PRA the recognized trade association of retailers and retail suppliers in the country.

The two-day conference and expo, featuring retail experts from both global and local scenes and retail solutions and suppliers at the exhibit area is anchored on this year’s theme “Retail Reimagined” to help retailers and the industry as a whole seek strategies on how to make retailing relevant amidst disruptions and changes in the digital age.

The Stores Asia Expo, the twin activity of the NRCE will feature solutions and state-of-the-art technology including Retail Solutions, E-Commerce & M-Commerce, Shop Fittings & Store Design, Digital Marketing, Commercial and Real Estate Developers, Web Developers, Non-traditional Advertising, Financial Services, Storage and Distribution, HR Solutions, and Billboard Locations among others, to help retailers enhance and expand their business operations.

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