IADS Exclusive: Highlights from The 2023 Retail Summit in Dubai

IADS Exclusive April 2023 Selvane Mohandas du Ménil

The IADS attended the latest edition of the Retail Summit in Dubai, during which the Association had the privilege to moderate two roundtables, one centered on customer centricity (with the CEO of AWW group, owner of Pepe Jeans, Hackett and Façonnable, the CEO of WHP Global, owner of Toys’R’Us, and the President of Fashion, Beauty and Homeware at Chalhoub), and the second one on the future of specialty retail (with the CEO of Fred Segal, CEO and co-founder of The Latest Concept Store, and the CEO of Al Sulaiman Group).  

This edition was also the opportunity to listen to great leaders and hear their insights. Below is a selection of the most interesting lessons we took home. 

Overall, the Retail Summit is a rather surprising event when compared to the NRF in New York or the WRC. Its regional dimension makes it an ideal event for any organization or business interested in the Middle East, but it is also a great opportunity for networking, as guest speakers and high-ranking visitors are easily reachable thanks to its intimate and smaller format. Bumping into CEOs is easy during lunch breaks and conversations are casual. 

While the first day was focused on functional approaches to the business, the second day was star-studded with retail legends, bringing the audience into another dimension. Three ranges of topics were discussed: 

  • New ways to address the notions of customer lifetime value, mass and scalable experience customization, and customer-centricity (a key topic in the Middle East), 
  • Sustainability and how it translates into fashion and retail, 
  • Keeping legacy businesses (either brands or retail formats) relevant for the future.

IADS provides its members with a weekly in-depth analysis on retail-oriented topics. This is an example of the themes the Association regularly addresses, and the topic of an article from the IADS members-only newsletter date 05 April 2023.

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