Senior retailers meet up to shape RBTE agenda

Senior retailers from Asda, Burberry, Dixons Retail, Marks & Spencer (M&S) and Tesco will be among the industry professionals meeting in London next week to debate the major issues currently facing the sector.

The gathering of retail and leisure industry CIOs, eCommerce directors, technology specialists and innovation managers – as well as a selection of senior figures from some of Europe's leading retail-related consultancies and research groups – will help shape the agenda for next year's Retail Business Technology Expo (RBTE), which takes place at Olympia, London between 10-11 March 2015.

It is the biggest and most illustrious RBTE steering committee yet as RBTE organiser Legend Exhibitions plans for its fifth – and largest ever – annual show.

Among the newcomers to the panel include Shop Direct's group eCommerce director Jonathan Wall, Clarks' global IT director David Grant and Moss Bross eCommerce director Neil Sansom, as well as Stephen Robertson, non-executive director for Timpson Group and former British Retail Consortium (BRC) director-general.

Key topics on the agenda for next Wednesday's meeting, which is being hosted by RBTE partner Planet Retail, surround technology's influence on the retail industry – from the back-end of the supply chain all the way through to the increasingly diverse customer-facing systems now found in-store.

Crucially, the senior panel of retail professionals will provide an industry viewpoint on what they, their colleagues and peers typically want to see from the RBTE exhibition and conference programme, giving the event organising team the relevant feedback to ensure they deliver exactly what the sector wants.

Robertson commented: "The RBTE steering group is bringing diversity and seniority to the development of what will be the finest and most challenging RBTE yet.

"There is no comparable event that has that amount of retail insight and brainpower to shape its thinking. The steering group will ensure that the content is strictly relevant and pushing to fashion the most content-rich experience."

A full write-up of the topics discussed at next week's steering committee meeting will be published on Essential Retail in July.

This year's full steering committee is, as follows: Ian Woosey, Senior Director, Alvarez & Marsal; Geri Gray, Senior Innovations Manager, Asda; Aumit Bagchi, Projects & Innovation Manager, Burberry; David Grant, Global IT director, Clarks; Laura Philips, Programme Manager, David Lloyd Leisure; Kash Ghedia, Technology Manager, Dixons Retail; Kerry Okikiade, Finance & Operations Director,; Sarah Pavlou, President, International Women in Business; Richard Mader, President of Mader International Consulting; Richard Jenkins, Head of RFID Programme, M&S; Neil Sansom, eCommerce Director, Moss Bros; Mark McMurtrie, Director, Payments Consultancy Limited; Helen Slaven, Managing Director, Planet Retail; Rob Abington, Senior Director IT EU, Ralph Lauren; Chris Hughes, Consultant, Retail Automation Consultancy; Jevern Partridge, Professional eCommerce Leader, Ridge Solutions Limited; Jonathan Wall, Group eCommerce Director, Shop Direct; Gavin Sullivan, Group Buying Manager, Tesco; Stephen Robertson, Non-Exec director at Timpson Group and ex-BRC Director-General; Charles De Clerck, Customer Relationship Manager, Waitrose; Robin Phillips, Director eCommerce, Waitrose

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