Autumn Fair reveals rich talks programme

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  •    Author: Mike Jasfer
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Home and gift retail show Autumn Fair, taking place at the Birmingham NEC from 1st-4th September, will host three theatres that promise to educate visitors, elevate knowledge and encourage retail innovation.
Across each day of the show, each theatre will deliver trend information, retail inspiration and practical advice to help drive sales, with stand-out industry speakers a key feature. This year’s show will also offer a greater focus on the viewpoints of retailers, with insider perspectives set to feature more heavily.
Inspiring Retail
This stage is set to challenge visitors’ assumptions about the retail sector, how best to serve consumers and how to create a responsible and sustainable retail business. Embracing a sector in transition, the theatre will give a platform to speakers who analyse the mindset of the contemporary consumer, tackling some of the biggest challenges faced by retailers.
Highlights include retail expert and broadcaster Mary Portas, retail entrepreneur Theo Paphitis, and organisations including the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and IBM, alongside influential specialists, heads of buying and retail leaders.
Sourcing
A new addition this year is the Sourcing Theatre, located in Hall 10. The dedicated offering will help visitors understand and visualise the most important global retail trends, with forecasts up to Autumn-Winter 2020/21 presented at the show. For multiple buyers, the addition of the Sourcing Theatre will provide a robust overview of how best to extend a supply chain.
Brands sharing their insight include Mama’s and Papa’s, Kingfisher, Charlotte Tilbury and Lush.
Retail Skills
Offering practical advice for fledgling online businesses and ambitious independents, this theatre’s programme has been curated to help visitors improve skillsets and provide advice on everything from SEO and social media strategy to digital transformation and export management.
Julie Driscoll, Autumn Fair’s MD, says: “The retail sector will continue to change at a rapid pace well into 2020. In many ways retail has been one of the last industries to have to face up to digital disruption and it’s coming at a time when the sector also faces challenges around the sustainability of its manufacturing processes and packaging. We may be coming accustomed to change, but with change comes new skills and expertise we have to master. This is why it’s more important than ever for retailers to listen to each other, and experts on the sector, at a forum such as Autumn Fair – drawing on shared knowledge and expertise to ensure that we have the know-how to overcome and adapt.
“This means looking beyond our own borders too. That’s why for 2019 we’re introducing the Sourcing Theatre, to help retailers move into the growing revenue source that is private label, or offer something a little different, to bring the best of the world to our doorsteps. Speakers here will be well-versed in what it takes to find the best products from further afield and expand business horizons.
“The speaker programme for 2019 across all three theatres is on track to be one of our biggest and best ever, with all the headliners still to be announced – watch this space!”
Register to visit the show here.

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