Consumer Goods Forum Global Summit 2018: Day-Two Review

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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  • Following a first day that focused on the growing influence of Asia Pacific on the retail and consumer goods sectors, the second day of the Consumer Goods Forum Global Summit cast its net wider, examining global best practice.

    James Quincey, CEO of The Coca-Cola Company, took the stage for the opening keynote. He said that Coca-Cola’s strategy is centred on creating a very consumer-centric portfolio, with digital as a catalyst to win with new consumers.

    Quincey noted that in this digital world, where the parameters dictating the success and failure of brands is markedly different to the past, operators increasing need to ensure that they aren’t carrying any excess ‘baggage’.

    “We need to be courageous enough to kill off the ‘zombies’ that aren’t working,” he explained. “In this world dominated by a digital mindset, the worst mistake you can make is not knowing when to innovate, upgrade or delete.”


    Helping Customers Do Better

    Following Quincey’s presentation, it was the turn of one of the most eagerly anticipated presentations of the day, from Alibaba’s Daniel Zhang, who outlined how the group’s infrastructure was tailored to ensuring its partners, small business owners, could perform better.

    “We are an enabler, not an ‘e-tailer’,” Zhang explained.


    Later, an eye-opening, anecdote-heavy presentation from Ian McLeod of Dairy Farm established some of the fundamentals that underline a strong business, and how Asia is increasingly being seen as a benchmark setter for the trade.


    “If you are looking for the future of retail, the future of technology, don’t look West, look East,” McLeod explained.

    Building Experience

    The topic was discussed further by a panel of Asian retail leaders, who shared their views on how the online and offline channels could provide better experience for shoppers through partnership.

    Nicolo Galante, CEO of Central Retail, said the omnichannel race is not a technology race. In addition, as Thierry Garnier, CEO of Carrefour China, stated that convenience stores are a key format for China, and to deliver online orders, “you need to have a store”.

    Also featuring on the panel, Shafie Shamsuddin, CEO of Transmart, drew the audience’s attention to general trade, which still accounts for 80% of retail sales in Indonesia, and Winston Cheng, President of International,, said that for categories such as fresh, consumers still want to touch and feel, and that’s why opened its own supermarket to provide better experience with fresh categories.


    David Taylor, CEO of Procter & Gamble closed the day with his advice to young leaders that they should stay curious, be willing to fail and keep a passion to "make a difference" in today's world.

    With day two completed, delegates gathered in the salubrious surroundings of the Marina Bay Sands for the annual L’Oréal party, which kept everyone entertained well into the early hours.

    © 2018 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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