PLUS-Forum “Online & Offline Retail 2016”: first takeaways
12.04.2016 801 views
The 3rd International PLUS-Forum “Online & Offline Retail 2016” was held by the Retail&Loyalty Journal in Moscow On 4-5 April 20165. The event was dedicated to the analysis of the current state and prospects for the development of retail industry in Russia, the CIS and other countries.
1025 registered delegates visited the 2- day Forum that brought together
1025 registered delegates in total visited the 2- day Forum that brought together at Sokolniki Exhibition & Convention Center leading Russian and international online- and offline-retail experts, owners, top managers and specialists of retail networks, food, non-food, DIY, fashion, HoReCa, Internet stores and banks from Russia and the FSU countries, vendors of equipment and software solutions, and etc.
It is worthwhile noticing that the bulk of the audience had been working at the Forum until the very end of the event in the evening of April 5. Also, the level of questions addressed to the speakers and booth attendants showed a high competence and interest of the Forum delegates.
A successful combination of the exhibition and conference within the large-scale platform of the metropolitan Sokolniki Exhibition & Convention Center allows the participants of the International PLUS-Forums to become familiar with the most advanced retail technologies and stay updated on the latest developments in the industry. They gain a rare opportunity to appraise at first hand the actual successfulness of each solution illustrated by the respective business cases of companies presented at the Forum, and learn how the innovations could be integrated in their business in the most effective way.
Along with the conference, during the 2 days of the Forum the most representative annual exhibition of specialized business solutions, equipment and technologies from leading Russian and foreign companies was working. The companies presented their information about successful projects and plans for the future at 56 stands.
Delegates’ feedbacks prove that the participation in the event is, first of all, an excellent opportunity to “synchronize watches”, to understand and discuss main trends in the retail industry and e-commerce. It is even more valuable in the context of the new economic reality, when companies seek out and find their own ways to optimize resources and maintain retail business in shrinking sales conditions, and share their experience with their colleagues.
Among the key topics are the following:
- Measures of regulation of retail and related sectors by the state: the impact on the business under conditions of unstable market
- Implications of the law on “online-fiscalization” entry into force
- How growth can be achieved in the shrinking demand and decreasing margins environment
- Expansion, repositioning and rebranding in a crisis
- Regulation of online environment: complying with the interests of the state without detriment to the consumer?
- Leveraging online marketplaces’ capabilities to promote Russian goods abroad
- Prospects for omnichannel commerce
- Internet of Things and innovative payment solutions for retail
- Social networks and loyalty: myths and reality
- Logistics and fulfillment: ways and cases of optimization
- ... and many other topics
In the course of the 2-day conference 60 speakers, including world-class experts delivered their reports, highlighting the current range of problems and providing their vision of prospects for further development of the industry. By the estimate of the participants, Forum 2016 turned to be one of the most interesting insofar it concerns people that made their reports and presentations.
Recognized experts of global renown were invited as special guests to “Online & Offline Retail 2016”. For many of them, it was for the first time that they delivered reports in Russia.
Nick Lansley, Expert at Nick Lansley's Innovation Lab, ex-Director for open innovations at Tesco, chose e-grocery, a very promising trend, as a topic of one of his reports to inform about its development in the UK market. He also shared his experience of implementing technological innovations to enrich customer experience, using Tesco’s cases as an example.
Ken Leaver, Vice President of Products for Operations and Seller Platform at Lazada, the leading e-Commerce platform in South-East Asia, delivered his presentation in the videoconference format, to inform about the practices of replacing cash on delivery of SE Asia countries.
Michael Leander, founder of Markedu, an innovation marketing school, spoke about modern marketing inspiration that turns shoppers into influencers while increasing share of wallet.
Among the conference speakers are representatives of regulators, relevant committees of the Federation Council, ministries and departments, as well as the major retail organizations that will share their plans and inform about the new role of the state in the market development and regulation.
Stanislav Naumov, Government Relations Director, X5 Retail Group, opening the programme of Forum Day 1, set the general direction for the discussion. In his speech he made an emphasis on the negative implications of draft law 704631-6 (which introduces amendments to the law “On trade”) both from the perspective of keeping prices down with the quality of goods remaining unchanged, and from the perspective of supporting the domestic manufacturer. According to Stanislav Naumov the new amendments will result in the total losses for domestic manufacturers and retailers amounting to 500 bln. rubles, while the only beneficiary thereof will be wholesalers dealing with import goods with a long shelf life.
It shall be noted that Lyudmila Bokova, Deputy Chairperson of the Committee for Constitutional Legislation and State Construction under the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, delivering her speech during the same session, paid great attention to the concerns sounded by S. Naumov regarding draft law 704631-6. She stressed that experts of the Federation Council Committee would analyze the issue thoroughly. Provided that the adverse effects of the amendments on the Russian economy are confirmed, the draft law should be suspended till all deficiencies have been eliminated.
In continuation of the problem discussion, Sergey Tretyakov, Inspector General, Main Customs Control Department, Federal Customs Service of Russia, talked about the implementation of goods marking and labelling projects in the Russian Federation with check (identification) symbols. He mentioned that despite the exaggerated opinion in mass media on the high cost of the initiative, glued and sewn-in check symbols will amount to only 15 rubles, while add-on symbols to only 22 rubles, which does not look burdensome for retailers compared to the cost of the furs.
Interesting and up-to-date statistics data on the USAIS were provided by Vladimir Tishchenko, Head of IT systems Implementation and Support, CentreInform, and Andrey Mishonin, Deputy Director of the Moscow branch of CentreInform, USAIS-WR Project Manager.
By now, all manufacturers and importers of alcohol containing products, 99% of wholesale organizations and 71% of retail outlets have already been connected to the USAIS. By July 2016, the USAIS shall have covered the retail sale of alcohol containing products to the end consumer in urban settlements, and by July 2017 – in rural localities.
Andrey Danilenko, Chairman of the Board of the National Union of Milk Producers (Soyuzmoloko), expressed an opinion that the latest government initiatives (Platon, USAIS, online-fiscalization, obligatory veterinary certification and etc.) erected administrative barriers, first and foremost, to the development of small and medium retail business. The speaker believes, this may become a subject of various populist speculations against the backdrop of the starting State Duma election campaign.
Alexey Lee, Head of Merchant Relations, the National Payment Card System (NPCS), informed, that one million MIR cards would have been issued in Crimea by the end of 2016. Starting from the second half of 2016, NPCS plans to issue 16 mln cards in total within the year. The interest to the NPCS representative’s presentation held firm throughout the conference. Delegates, speakers and moderators of the Online & Offline Retail 2016 conference kept turning back to the topic of MIR cards issuing, acquiring, and sizes of interchange and acquiring fees.
In the following sessions of Forum Day 1 experts discussed key development scenarios for online and offline retail, international retail development trends, prospective technologies and many other topics. The participating companies presented their successful business cases and the results of the implementation of new solutions in business organizations.
In particular, Alexey Kirichek, Vice-President, Deputy Director of Retail Business Department, VTB24, analyzed the evolution of customer’s payment behavior from the bank’s point of view. As much as 25% of card transaction volume accounts for the payments in retail chains today, to reach the half of the card transaction volume by 2020, according to the bank’s estimates. This trend outturns the retail growth rate. The average receipt for purchases with bank cards has fallen from 1,726 rubles in 2010 to 1,154 rubles in 2015. It is expected that the average check will have decreased to mere 775 rubles by 2020. According to Kirichek, it means that bank cards cease being associated with large purchases only.
Presentations of business cases and working solutions in retail chains sparked a heightened interest of the PLUS-Forum conference audience. Mikhail Isaev, Depity Director of Sales, Head of Sales in Non-bank Sector, Gamma-Centre, introduced DoCash technologies for cash handling and solutions for cash collection, and Masanori Misukami, Sales and Marketing Director at Oki Systems, and Dmitry Rybin, OKI Product Marketing Manager, spoke about the company’s solutions for retail: ATMs and printers.
In her presentation, Katarina Hansson, Leader Retail Industry, Teradata Corporation, talked about the Internet of Things and innovative retail solutions, and Nick Lansley, Expert at Nick Lansley's Innovation Lab, ex-Director for open innovations at Tesco, presented Tesco’s cases of technological innovation for customer experience enrichment. Tesco managed to prove itself as an innovation entity and a pioneer in quite a range of areas, which is reflected in its development strategy and decisions made.
The final session of Forum Day 1 dedicated to e-commerce, was opened by Dmitry Satin, USABILITYLAB Founder, Usability Expert and UX-consultant in Russia and the CIS, who spoke about the human factor in online-shopping. Ken Leaver, Vice President of Products for Operations and Seller Platform at Lazada, couldn’t join the discussion of key issues in person, but discussed the problem of replacing cash on delivery of SE Asia countries in the digital format of a videoconference.
The key element of the conference was the session named Global Marketplaces and Major Logistics Operators as the Drivers of the Russian Cross-border e-Commerce. It united representatives of international online-malls, leading logistics companies, Russian manufacturers and retailers, interested or already engaged in the delivery of Russian goods to other countries. During the session the most pressing issues were discussed related to the cross-border trade, methods to resolve imbalances in the taxation and administration, still persisting in the Russian laws. For example, Dmitry Selikhov, Deputy Director General, Alibaba.com (RU) informed about Global platforms of Alibaba Group in the context of opportunities for Russian exports. Kino Kwok, General Manager, TradeEase, presented a report dedicated to the experience of cooperation of Russia and China in cross-border trade.
The R&L editorial board and the PLUS-Forum Steering Committee are going to pay special attention to the coverage of the matter in the publications due to a special significance of topics discussed during the session not only for online and offline retail, but for many manufacturers as well. It goes without saying that Online & Offline Retail 2016 Forum couldn’t leave behind the scenes the issue of customers’ loyalty and tools to generate it. During the 2nd day of the PLUS-Forum the speakers shared their views on the modernization of existing loyalty programmes and peculiarities of developing new ones. A special attention was paid to the issue of enhancing communication with existing customers, and to the problem of understanding the behavior of shop visitors to turn them into customers. Elena Naumchik, Co-founder of the Client Loyalty and Client Centricity Association (KLIK), CEO of E&A Loyalty Ltd., spoke about the evolution of loyalty programmes in retail business, and Michael Leander, Founder of Markedu, award winning lecturer and marketing guru, informed about modern marketing incentives and explained how to turn shoppers into influencers while increasing share of wallet.
During an absolutely new session named “e-Grocery Market: Crisis as the Time for a Breakthrough?” the leading industry experts discussed in detail the food online-sales business models most suitable for retail chains, large FMCG manufacturers and small private stores, and provided practical recommendations. Alexey Sizov, Head of Anti-fraud, Information Security Centre, Jet Infosystems», shared his view of burning problems of fraud fighting: from merchant staff fraud to attacks on Internet portals.
In his turn, Nick Lansley, Expert at Nick Lansley's Innovation Lab, ex-Director for open innovations at Tesco, talked about the UK market and Tesco’s E-grocery experience in his second presentation at the Forum conference.
Alongside with the emergence of new pressing topics in the PLUS-Form conference programme, the range of companies that joined the event also grew.
In 2016 it was enriched by quite a few major international and Russian organizations:
Global Partner – VTB24
General Sponsor – Gamma-Centre
Chief sponsors – AXIS Communications, Datalogic, Ingenico, Data-Centric Alliance, IBS, Teradata, Raiffeisenbank, QPLATFORM, InPost, Tele2, Teleperformance, CardSmile, Europeum / OKI, Sarus Technology.
Partners – EPSON, S-Four, DEAC, TradeEase, TSD-service, CardParking, NBK Trade, CFT, PickPoint, Bosla, CTI, Compass Plus, DigiSky, SweetCard, RBS, CASHOFF, METRIC, LabelUP, VisionLabs, Lattelecom, reWorker, RosEvroBank, PRO, CardsMobile, IMS, Interactive Group, Infobip, Motion View, Manzana, DEEP 2000, Samsung Techwin, SailPlay, Retail.ru, Mango Telecom, Jet Infosystems, XPlace, Retail Rocket, RFI Bank, Estet-Technic, PSI Logistics, Third Sense, Goods4Cast, Plastic Online, Thank you from Sberbank, Loymax, USABILITILAB, Kollega, retailCRM, Nordic ID.
The complete list of reports, partners and sponsors of the Event can be found at the official web-site of PLUS-Forum (PLUS-Forum.com).
The increased role and place of the event for the development of the industry was mentioned by the Forum participants, all of whom agreed that this year the Forum showed progress not only in the number of delegates and speakers, but also in the level of the reporters, the quality depth and competence of their presentations, and the activity of the Forum visitors during the conference in the hall, as well as in our social media and the PLUS Forum mobile application.
During the Forum, the sessions and solutions presented at the exhibition were streamed in Twitter and Facebook with official hashtag #OOR2016. Using the hashtag the Forum speakers, delegates and participants uploaded their photo materials, shared their impressions and invited visitors to their booths.
The coming issue of the Retail & Loyalty Journal will offer its readers a detailed review of presentations of the 1st day of the conference, and provide a detailed coverage of the exhibition part of the event. During the event video and photo coverage of the exhibition, speakers’ presentations and interviews with the Forum participants was performed. In the near future videos and photos will be available at the PLUS-Forum.com information portal in Photo and Video sections.
Please be advised that all delegates who completed the PLUS-Forum questionnaire will soon receive access to all speakers’ presentations in a message sent to the e-mail address specified in the questionnaire.
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Sending our thanks to all participants of the International PLUS-Forum Online & Offline Retail 2016, the Steering Committee invites you to continue the cooperation at the next 4th International PLUS-Forum Online & Offline Retail 2017 to be held at Sokolniki Exhibition & Convention Center in Moscow on March 28-29, 2017.