Preview: World Retail Congress 2015 Part 1

17 : 09 : 2015 World Retail Congress 2015 : Harrods : Metro Group

Rome - For the ninth annual World Retail Congress, retailers gathered to ponder the dangers and opportunities of technological innovation

  • Digital technologies have disrupted every aspect of the sector
  • For retailers, the biggest change has been in the power of the consumer
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Digital technology has been a profoundly disruptive force for retailers, and at the gathering of industry leaders many of the speeches struck an anxious note.

‘We are at a crossroads,’ Harrods CFO John Edgar told the audience. ‘What suited us for the past 150 years won’t be good enough for the next five.’

After years in which digital innovations were used as gimmicks, studies released at the conference showed that consumers were dubious about the benefits of in-store technology. For retailers, the challenge is not just to do digital, but to do it well.

The Big Picture: Retailers are having to approach their business in an entirely new manner. For more on how to achieve this, read our Review of World Retail Congress 2015.