Strategy – Trends – Performance in off- and on-line retail
18-19 October 2017, Hotel Courtyard, Warsaw
The sixth strategic meeting of retail chain decision makers, responsible for developing sales in off- and on-line channels, is over. This year’s event, expanded to 4 parallel sessions, offered even more thematic options to choose from. For over six years, Polish companies have been trying to combine off- and on-line channels in their strategies. Of course, it’s a complex process, extended in time. Some companies honestly admit that the omnichannel model is still ahead of them, while the others claim they have already reached the goal. The role of our Forum is constant: to present a broad perspective on e-Commerce development for retail chains, including pointing to the channels and tools worth using to catch up with the consumer, customer, shopper.
The Forum opened with a plenary session. This year, apart from omnichannel, it also focused on the growing importance of marketplaces. Our special guests were representatives of giants on the market: Romit Choudhury, Head of Demand Strategy at Amazon and Michał Iwanciw, Sales Director at Allegro. As usual, we also had the opportunity to participate in a CEO’s panel, where Presidents and Vice presidents interviewed by Dorota Bachman (CEO, PWN/ RAVELO), talked about the challenges connected with building a unified brand experience in all possible channels. The panelists were: Marcin Barański, CEO, MEBLE VOX, SKŁADY VOX, VOX DETAL; Zbigniew Gonsior, Vice President, FERRO; Vit Endler, ex CEO, MALL.PL, Co-owner, VIRTOOAL.COM and Marek Czupryna, President of the Management Board, KOMEX (5.10.15.).
After the lunch, the Participants had the opportunity to attend one of the following parallel sessions: e-Commerce, omnichannel, in store and FMCG in e-Commerce. This year’s novelty – the session dedicated to FMCG producers, deserves particular attention, for even though they might not intend to open a store in the future themselves, they are perfectly aware that the growing importance of the on-line channel means increases for them as well, and so, cooperation with retailers is changing its character.
During the first day of the Forum, Participants expressed particular interest in topics revolving around unified brand experience in multiple channels; on- and off-line synergy and cohesion of multichannel activities and standardisation of actions undertaken in the e-Commerce channel by retail chains. At the end of the day we split into smaller groups for two rounds of round table discussions. The hottest topic turned out to be gathering data in omnichannel and was moderated by Bartłomiej Ratajewski, Director of e-Commerce Development at MEDIAEXPERT.PL, ELECTRO.PL, and AVANS.PL. Traditionally, we closed the first day of the Forum with a networking cocktail party. Here, we would like to thank all of the Participants for playing ‘Activity’ with us and all the brainpower and emotions involved!
The second day of the Forum was traditionally marked by an informal dress code. This year we encouraged everyone to wear sneakers (as a symbol of combining various channels). The day began with a powerful speech delivered by Karol Karpiński, Client Solutions Manager CEE at FACEBOOK – discussing, among others, trends important for retail in Poland. Another presentation that met with particularly warm welcome was delivered by Jarosław Sygitowicz, Co-founder and CMO at ZENCARD, who talked about the challenges and opportunities that await us while combining off- and on-line customer profiles.
The plenary session ended with a panel discussion of Sales Directors responsible for traditional and on-line sales, who concluded that competition is out of the question, in the omnichannel era, the off- and on-line channels have to tighten their cooperation. The discussion was moderated by Paweł Wojciechowski, Business Director at PERFORMICS (PUBLICIS MEDIA), and the panelists were: Michał Przybysz, Director of e-Commerce & Digital, IKEA; Arkadiusz Ruciński, Director of e-Commerce, LPP; Jakub Gierszyński, Director of e-Commerce, DECATHLON; Joanna Pustkowska, Director of Retail Sales Department, YES; Dorota Wiaderek, Director of Commerce and Marketing, SUPER-PHARM POLAND and Andrzej Iwan, Digital Manager, AVON. The panelists pointed out that the challenge of assembling and retaining a proper e-Commerce department is becoming more and more significant these days.
After the lunch, the remaining hours of the second day of the Forum were filled with a variety of topics discussed during four, parallel, thematic sessions.
As usual, both for me personally and the whole Blue Business Media team, it was truly a pleasure to host you. We are very grateful for all your opinions – both the positive ones and those that suggested changes to be introduced. Every year we do our best to make sure the Forum meets the expectations of our guests even better than before. Your suggestions allow us to grow, develop, and raise the bar.