Congress to unpack retail success

first_imgThis year’s World Retail Congress Africa will be held in the continent’s economic hub, Johannesburg.(Image: Brand South Africa) Professor David Block, was one of four astronomers who studied the Hypatia pebble.(Image: World Retail Congress)MEDIA CONTACTS • World Retail Congress+44 (0)203 033 2020MediaClub South Africa reporterMore than 250 retail leaders from across the world will meet in Johannesburg at the World Retail Congress Africa, to be held from 4 to 6 November, to discuss, debate and define the future of retail on the continent.The World Retail Congress Africa is new to sub-Saharan Africa, created in response to the rapidly changing and diversifying marketplaces on the continent. It is anticipated that it will go straight to the heart of retail opportunities, and that speakers will look at servicing and understanding the new African consumer across new channels in new markets. They will also provide global retail intelligence, with an Africa market focus.No other continent offers the same growth potential for retailers as Africa. Faced with limited population growth and sluggish economies at home, many American and particularly European retailers are expanding into emerging markets in the hope of finding growth opportunities. But competition is intense in the large markets of China and Brazil, prompting many to look elsewhere to gain an advantage. Africa is a good place to look: although traditional forms of retailing are still dominant on the continent, a growing middle class is demanding branded products and the opportunity to shop in modern retail formats.Africa’s main challenges, however, lie in its enormous size and diversity: Africa is not one country. A thorough understanding of local cultures, beliefs, customs, economics, and practices is necessary for success. With this in mind, the World Retail Congress Africa agenda will focus on specific country case studies to help participants identify the opportunities, and grow their business based on successful examples across the continent.For African groups to expand their presence, they must build brands underpinned by local insights that motivate African consumers while delivering on a global standard.Stakeholders in the sector are encouraged to attend the congress. Effective and prosperous businesses in the most promising countries will explain how they have changed their business models through understanding consumer trends. More than 40 sessions have been planned for the two-day congress, covering a variety of topics, such as:$1·         The informal versus formal retail economy – financing retail development and roll-out through domestic financing, and funding from Brics members and the West;$1·         Identifying sustainable growth markets – market insight and chief executive officer case studies from Angola, Botswana, Egypt, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa;$1·         Online consumers – introducing the online, mobile, connected African consumer and new retail opportunities;$1·         Entering African retail successfully – business models, including joint ventures, franchises, and acquisitions, and market conditions for launch and expansion; and,$1·         Delivering best practice operational excellence and supply chain management to exceed customer expectations.More than 60 speakers, all leaders in their fields, have been confirmed. They will bring personal and continent-wide insights on successfully adapting to a changing marketplace. They include:$1·         Steve Hammett, president – retail at Al Futtaim, United Arab Emirates (Marks & Spencer);$1·         David Kneale, chief executive, Clicks Group;$1·         Therese Gearhart, president South Africa, Coca-Cola;$1·         Paula Disberry, group planning head, Woolworths;$1·         Jonathan Ciano, chief executive, Uchumi;$1·         Jeremy Hodara, managing director,;$1·         Sullivan O’Carroll, chairman and managing director South Africa, Nestlé;$1·         Bill Paladino, chief executive internet, MIH, Naspers Africa (including;$1·         Andre Farber, executive vice president, Grupo Boticário;$1·         Yaw Nsarkoh, managing director East and South Africa, Unilever;$1·         Suzanne Ackerman, transformation director, Pick n Pay; and,$1·         Mncane Mthunzi, group head – Africa food retail and supplier development, Massmart.Success stories in particular nations will also be unpacked:● Angola: How can one conduct business successfully in Angola? What are the business models that are working? The Angola country session will hear from Grupo Boticário, which after more than 35 years of successful franchising in Brazil, is considered the largest point of sale network in cosmetics and fragrances in the world. In Angola, a well-financed country, it sells to the international consumer base at the heart of the country’s oil economy. The session will look at what changes it effected to remain locally minded and sensitive to the needs of its growing consumer groups. Speakers: Nicolas Borrero Pabon, international business unit manager, and Andre Farber, executive vice-president, Grupo Boticário● Botswana: As one of the leading supermarket brands in Botswana, Choppies addresses the one to three level consumer in Africa. The brand is now in neighbouring countries, including South Africa. Botswana itself has been identified by AT Kearney’s Global Retail Development Index as the top sub-Saharan African country for retail business. This session will look at what it means to address the bottom of the pyramid consumer now and the potential in the sector. Speaker: Ramachandran Ottapathu, chief executive, Choppies● Egypt: The Al-Futtaim Group, founded over 70 years ago, is one of the most respected corporations in the lower Gulf and North Africa. It operates more than 65 companies across diverse retail sectors, including Ikea, Marks & Spencer, Toys R’ Us, Robinsons and Guess. Despite its recent political instability, Egypt is a lucrative market when you manage to get it right. Learn how Marks & Spencer in Egypt has managed to survive and thrive in this environment. Speaker: Steve Hammett, president – retail, Al Futtaim (Marks & Spencer)● Kenya: As the largest retailer in East Africa, including Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda, Nakumatt is still expanding into the wider region and plans to add internet shopping to its direct-to-consumer platforms. Find out how to deliver retail experiences to 41 million people and how to prioritise markets for expansion. Speaker: Thiagarajan Ramamurthy, director of strategy and operations, Nakumatt● Nigeria: Nigeria’s online retail industry is on the rise more so than any other African country. What makes the conditions right in this country to set up and grow your online business? How can online retail businesses survive and negotiate the existing offline challenges of getting product to market? This session will look at funding, accessing core online consumers vis-a-vis mobile network development, and remaining innovative and relevant as new physical and online competition hits the commercial sphere. Speaker: Sim Shagaya, chief executive,● South Africa: One of the largest retailers in Africa, Woolworths is a South African chain that extends, through franchise partnerships, throughout Africa and into the Middle East, trading through more than 400 outlets. How does Woolworths split its approach to the rest of Africa’s markets and non-grocery strategy, where supply chain complexities exist? This session will look at best practice in sourcing, trending and keeping the customer at heart. Speaker: Paula Disberry, group director retail operations and international, Woolworths.last_img read more

4 Technologies ready to transform 2019

first_imgWhat it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Follow the Puck Related Posts Change is the word that best describes the time and age that we live in. Everyone is on the lookout for something that adds to the quality of life. What defines change? Nothing is a better representation of the change than technology. The exciting part is that we have been on this track since ancient times.Technology that once was a trend has now become a culture. The aim is to raise the standards of living and creating things, ways and means to add ease in human life. This journey of technology started with the necessary tools. It has now taken on the course of making discoveries and innovations.Technology now works as an extension of humans. Our ever-increasing reliance on it is what gets our attention.The introduction of the computer and later the internet was a game changer. Computers reduced processing times and the internet was the medium that magnified communication channels. Together they opened doors and avenues that put us in the fast lane. We have reached a point where a universe of knowledge rests in our pocket and learning is easier than ever.Here’s a list of technologies that are set to further transform your lives for the better in 2019. This year looks to be the year of many new changes.1. AIAI has been around for a while now. Why is it that it will transform 2019? Well, until 2018, AI was in a test phase. The previous year saw lots of technological advancements that made advances experiments possible. The increase in technical capability gave the perfect platform to proceed with testing.These tests concluded the beginning of 2019. A couple of months into 2019 and we are looking at great transformations. It seems to be the year where humans will be up against the machines.The US has been at the forefront of most of the technology but China is not very far. They have made improvements to its algorithms which has given AI a new direction. They have made improvements in business operations. It means efficient data processing, better outcomes and smarter businesses. China is all set to take the lead in AI developments and applications.These advances in AI will not only remain in business processing. They are bound to complete man fewer vehicles project, rapid improvements in robotics, and fast industrial growth. 2019 is all set to be the year for AI, Machine learning, and Deep Learning. With AI, deep learning leads to smarter, better, and improved AI. This can very well be the best of human innovations so far.2. Cyber SecurityYou may find cybersecurity a thing of the past. Some may look at it as a contemporary reality. It has been around for a while and these comments are acceptable. Cybersecurity is as old as the connectivity itself. The connectivity called hackers along. This threat gave birth to what we now know as cybersecurity. This long history also refers to the fact there was an evolutionary process. It was not a onetime thing that refused to change.Cybersecurity grew both in scope and ability out of necessity. It is like a virus that penetrates the human body and we need medication to get rid of it. A few decades on viruses learn to resist the medicine and we look for alternatives or better cures.This is principle applies to cybersecurity as well. The only difference is that malware kept evolving because the creators were humans. Learning and attaining the capability to make a threatening virus, malware and other cyber threats.The evolution of cybersecurity has seen the development of new technologies. Some examples include hardware authentication, cloud technology, and deep learning. They can work both as individuals as well as in unison to make the shared cyberspace and devices a lot more secure.The demand for cybersecurity is rising faster than the development of new technology. The new tech explains some of the rapid increase in demand for cybersecurity professionals. Ethical hackers, chief security officer, and security engineers are few jobs that are high in demand. This technology is not just transforming the technology trends but it is also a significant influence on the global job market.3. IoTIoT or the internet of things is a relatively new concept. We define it as the mutual connection of computing devices that we use in our daily lives. The exciting part is that interconnection enables them to communicate. It includes exchanging data or sending/receiving commands. In simple words, machine talking to other devices.This technology is helping save rain forest in the Amazon. Authorities have planted devices on the trees that connect to other devices in their offices. Cutting or falling of a tree sends an alert back to them and the police rush to the location to catch the culprits.The future of IoT is set to be the real thing. Progress in the technological industry enables faster and better data transmissions between devices. Transferring data has opened up new horizons. We are talking about so very much power — in your palm.We already have ACs and other home appliances that can operate via our mobile phones. IoT is set to be extensively used in transportation, surveillance applications that will help both the government and the private sector. Imagine automated warehouses managed by machines and inventory maintained by devices.IoT has seen growth trends for a few years now. McKinsey Global reports that IoT is set to generate up to $11 trillion in revenues and economic benefits. The IoT Market in 2016 was somewhere around $157 billion. It is on track to reach a staggering $457 billion by 2020. IoT is growing in 2019.4. 5GWe have all been through the internet Gs. There is not a need to go through the past for that. Let’s jump straight to the one that is the talk of the day. 5G. The 5G network is the latest addition to the wireless communication family. There was much talk about it and 2018 was its launch pad. 5G or the fifth generation of wireless cellular technology is a breath of fresh air. The technology is faster than fast and is set to change the technology race, forever!It uses small antennas, has smaller honeycomb cells, and it operates on high spectrum frequencies. It uses 30-300 GHz frequency range which is rarely used for public communication and provides a lot of room for speeds and consistency. Think of it as a newly built road that has little to no traffic. Smooth and swift.Everyone is on the bandwagon to be the one to launch it first but there is no clear winner for this race. Samsung, however, made a collaboration with AT&T last year. The partnership aim was to develop 5G supported equipment and network that would help AT&T internet speeds to be faster than the rest.Samsung has also become the first cellular company to launch the first 5G enabled mobile phone. Cellular networks are still working on their infrastructure improvements. 2019 is set to be the year that will provide you 20-100 times faster than 4G. Will Jordan How OKR’s Completely Transformed Our Culture AI: How it’s Impacting Surveillance Data Storagelast_img read more

When Shah Rukh Khan pulled ‘wannabe’ KJo’s leg on Twitter

first_imgWe all know that Shah Rukh Khan is gifted with tremendous sense of humour and intelligence and he never misses a chance to tease his friends and colleagues.The recent victim of Shah Rukh’s razor sharp wit was friend Karan Johar whom SRK taught football in an innovative way.Shah Rukh Khan with Karan Johar. File photoKaran Johar, like everybody, tweeted about FIFA World cup final, despite knowing nothing about the game, openly admitting himself to be a wannabe. Shah Rukh immediately responded to Karan’s amusement (or embarrasment), familiarising with the teams playing the finals in his inimitable style.Here’s the banter:@karanjohar it’s ok to accept.V all like what’s ‘happening’. Just so u know Germany in White Argentima in Blue. The round thing is the ball. SHAH RUKH KHAN (@iamsrk) July 13, 2014Not only SRK but the director too took digs at himself saying,”That awkward moment when your mother and aunt know more about a sport than you do….hanging my clueless head in shame!!!!”, and hashtagging ‘#iamabimbo’That awkward moment when your mother and aunt know more about a sport than you do….hanging my clueless head in shame!!!! Karan Johar (@karanjohar) July 13, 2014Uff!!!!! And I kept thinking my mother has too many hygiene issues the amount of times she said Messi tonight!!!! #iamabimbo Karan Johar (@karanjohar) July 13, 2014last_img read more