No watered-down success: 21st National Retail Conference and Stores Asia Expo
Amid torrential rains and the Metro Manila flood, the 21st National Retail Conference and Stores Asia (21st NRCE) finished with a big bang.
Gathering over 600 retailers and retail executives from around the country, the event featured inspiring talks from Department of Tourism Secretary Ramon Jimenez, Jr., Coca-Cola Bottlers Philippines Inc. President and CEO William Schultz, Global Pinoy and America’s Next Top Model Executive Producer Michael Carandang and Primer Group of Companies President Jimmy Thai.
Adapting the hugely popular “More Fun” campaign slogan of the Department of Tourism, this year’s conference zeroed in on topics that will elevate the shopping experience in the Philippines. Local and global trends in branding, marketing and store design were tackled by retail experts including TNS Philippines who provided important insights on the Philippines’ growing young consumers and Terry Waterhouse of Redgoods Ltd who discussed the evolution of store design.
The 21st NRCE also offered the rare chance to see the biggest names in the industry not only in one venue, but in one panel discussion sharing insights that contributed to their success. The NRCE did it twice this year: first, in the panel discussion on Harnessing the Power of Digital Marketing and Online Commerce for Retail Growth where it gathered leading online players Multiply, sulit.com.ph and Zalora Philippines and known social media guru Janette Toral.
This was duplicated in the panel on Retail Entertainment: Creating a New Level of Customer Experience where the biggest retail developers talked about recent developments in retail entertainment that paved the way for malls’ transition from shopping areas to lifestyle zones. This topic accomplished a major victory as it featured Ayala Land Inc’s Vice President and Head of Commercial Business Group Rowena Tomeldan, SM Investments Inc’s Senior Vice President for Investor Relations Corazon Guidote and Megaworld’s First Vice President and Commercial Division Head Kevin Tan.
This year’s retail conference also addressed an issue relevant to all retailers: the influx of foreign brands in the Philippine shores. Greenwich, French Baker and Plains and Prints – some of the country’s most aggressive brands – shared insights and strategies on how they prepared and scored major gains versus their foreign counterparts.
The 21st NRCE also brought in acclaimed socio-preneurs Illac Diaz of My Shelter Foundation and Jeannie Javelosa of Echostore Sustainable Lifestyle to showcase sustainability efforts that have changed the lives and lifestyles of the Filipino people. This topic raised the awareness of NRCE attendees on various efforts that create jobs, enhance the quality of life and sustains the environment.
Over the years, the NRCE has served as the venue for productive networking and a vital source of updates on the latest developments in the local and international retail scene.
“We are proud that this event continues to serve the needs of our industry,” said PRA President Frederick D. Go. “Let’s all work together, united in our goal, of making our country, The Philippines, a top of mind choice for shopping in the Asia pacific region,” he urged the attendees.
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