On 2-4 October 2019 at the wonderful The Ritz-Carlton, Naples in Florida the US edition of our NG Retail Summit will bring together senior retail decision-makers and business leaders from across North America to discuss current industry challenges – and how best to tackle them.

The summit focuses on key topics such as: The future of Retail; omnichannel power & eCommerce explosion .

From case studies that lift the lid on operations inside best-in-class organisations, to workshops and collaborative sessions that focus on real challenges and future technology innovations, to one-to-one meetings with industry peers offering practical advice tailored to your specific needs, the summit provides you with everything you need to implement your key projects more effectively.

Our Approach

Every GDS Summit has one stated aim: to help attending executives implement their key projects more effectively. We do this by developing an in-depth understanding of those executives' project needs, the business outcomes they want to achieve, and the challenges they face in terms of hitting those goals.

Who Attends

Our summits are designed for executives looking to take their business to the next level – from market-leading brands to disruptive new entrants. As such, we’ve worked with some of the world’s best-loved and most forward-thinking businesses.
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Past Attendees

At previous events we've helped executives from some the world's most significant firms - as well as the most forward-thinking - to address their project challenges.
Image of Lisa Kerns
Lisa Kerns
Fareway Stores
Image of Jeffrey Halverson
Jeffrey Halverson
VP Store Experience & Operations
Ulta Beauty
Image of Ronald Blahnik
Ronald Blahnik
Hibbett Sporting Goods
Image of Yosef Martin
Yosef Martin
Founder & CEO
Image of Sydney Stinson
Sydney Stinson
VP Marketing
Image of Cedric Clark
Cedric Clark
VP Operations
Sam's Club
Image of Adam Powell
Adam Powell
VP Ecommerce
Hudson's Bay Companies
Image of Venkat Gopalan
Venkat Gopalan
Global Vice President, Products & Platform Engineering
Estee Lauder Companies
Image of Jim Edgett
Jim Edgett
Head of Integrated Marketing & Media
Image of Joice Wirkus
Joice Wirkus
VP Marketing
Image of Adam Starr
Adam Starr
VP Brand Development & Strategy
ALDO Group
Image of Mohammad Khan
Mohammad Khan
Edible Arrangements

6 Challenges in Retail

  • To rethink the role of stores. To identify new shopping experiences that can’t be found online.
  • To make digital a core part of the store experience. And use it to engage and empower all staff, from warehouse to store.
  • To gather meaningful customer data and use it to achieve long-term shopper loyalty.
  • To improve inventory visibility and forecasting. To get the right product to the right place at the right time. As efficiently as possible.
  • To explore and test ecommerce and online customer experience strategies, but still make money.
  • To differentiate. To compete.
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Summit Schedule

3 Days - 3 Summit Themes - 3 Workshops
Day 1
Day 2
Day 3
Wednesday October 2, 2019
Summit registration
1:00pm - 6:00pm
Solution provider briefing
2:00pm - 2:30pm
Welcome remarks and delegate briefing
2:30pm - 2:45pm
2:45pm - 3:30pm
Bringing it back to basics
3:30pm - 3:50pm
How to prevent customer speed dating
3:50pm - 5:00pm
How to create loyalty in store as well as online?
3:30pm - 5:00pm
Innovative technology: where/how do these technologies have a place in your business and if not what else..?
3:50pm - 5:00pm
Blockchain: how can it work for the retail industry?
3:50pm - 5:00pm
Combining instore and online to deliver a seamless customer experience
3:50pm - 5:00pm
How do you market effectively to your customers?
Roundtable feedback
5:00pm - 5:30pm
Networking drinks
6:00pm - 7:00pm
Gala dinner
7:00pm - 10:00pm
8:00pm - 8:30pm
Gala dinner keynote, Q&A: Experience, Experience, Experience
Thursday October 3, 2019
7:00am - 7:50am
Welcome Remarks
7:50am - 8:00am
8:00am - 8:20am
Value vs Technology: How to implement both?
8:20am - 8:50am
Shopping with your digital twin
8:50am - 9:20am
Traditional Brick & Mortar vs. New Entrants in the Retail Space
Oxford Style Debate and Live Polling
9:20am - 10:00am
Do loyalty schemes actually work? How to make them effective
Coffee & Networking Break
10:00am - 10:20am
Case Study
10:20am - 11:00am
Creating a seamless retail experience
11:00am - 11:40am
How to keep up with rising customer experience
Oxford Style Debate and Live Polling
11:40am - 12:20pm
How can social media be used as an effective marketing tool?
12:20pm - 12:50pm
Buzz words: what do they mean? How do we implement them effectively?
Networking Lunch
12:50pm - 1:50pm
1:50pm - 2:40pm
Drill Down Roundtables
2:40pm - 3:20pm
Technology and how to implement it
Case Study
3:20pm - 4:00pm
Employment, gain, train, retain
Panel Discussion
4:00pm - 4:40pm
The importance of considering your employee experience
Coffee & Networking Break
4:40pm - 5:00pm
Oxford Style Debate and Live Polling
5:00pm - 5:40pm
Conquer or collaborate it doesn’t have to be a battlefield!
Closing Keynote: The Retail apocalypse: is AMAZON really to blame?
5:40pm - 6:10pm
  • We all know Amazon is taking the ecommerce market by storm and has also begun to make an impact in the physical space as well. What lessons can other retailers learn and implement from this journey?
  • Should retailers consider them as a separate entity rather than considering them as a competitor?
  • How can retailers find alternative marketing solutions to stay ahead of the curve?
  • Amazon is causing major disruption throughout the entire retail sector which is affecting traditional retailer’s ability to DIRECTLY COMPETE with them, starting in July, all 1150+ Kohl’s locations will be accepting Amazon returns, thus, increasing their opportunity to service guests from the increased footfall. (CONQUER OR COLLABORATE)
  • What can other retailers take from Kohl’s expedition?
Attendee downtime
6:00pm - 7:00pm
Networking drinks
7:00pm - 7:30pm
Gala dinner, silent auction, quiz/trivia
7:30pm - 10:00pm
Friday October 4, 2019
7:30 am - 8:20 am
Welcome Remarks
8:20 am - 8:30 am
8:30 am - 8:50 am
The future of grocery shopping
8:50 am - 9:20 am
Optimizing Payment security
9:20 am - 10:00 am
Drill Down Roundtables
Coffee & Networking Break
10:00 am - 10:30 am
Case Study
10:30 am - 11:10 am
Understanding the impact of social culture on retailers and their customers
11:10 am - 11:50 am
Panel Discussion
11:50 am - 12:30 pm
Closing panel & wrap up: What do customers WANT?
Buffet lunch
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Summit Location

The Ritz-Carlton, Naples, Florida

Our events take place at some of the most prestigious venues in the world. Five-star accommodation, dining and amenities make attending one of our summits both business and pleasure. Being productive has never been so much fun.

Latest Case Study

Senior executives love our summits because of the unparalleled opportunity to meet people with ideas on how to move their key projects forward. But don’t just take our word for it…

To discuss how GDS Summits can help you solve your project challenges contact us on: 0117 921 4000 or email sayhello@gdsgroup.com.

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