The Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce in partnership with Scentre Group and King Living is delighted to invite you and your colleagues to attend our 2019 Retail Lunch on The Connected Customer Experience, featuring an esteemed panel of leaders including Peter Allen, CEO of Scentre Group, Daniel Agostinelli, CEO of Accent Group and Erica Berchtold, CEO of The Iconic.
Today’s ‘always on’ customer is demanding more. They’re savvier, more connected and more informed about brands and products. They expect to be able to interact with brands seamlessly online and in person, regardless of whether they’re seeking inspiration, a unique experience or purchasing a product or service. And while online retail sales continue to grow in Australia, more than 90 per cent of sales still occur in a physical store.
A brand is only as strong as the experiences it creates for its customers. The connected customer experience is about recognising changing customer demands. Contemporary retailers - brands that stay close to their customers, have a unique offering and measured distribution channels - are thriving in this next generation of retail.
Be sure not to miss this thought-provoking discussion on Australia’s unique retail ecosystem, and how to deliver consistently superior experiences for today’s customer.
Peter Allen, CEO, Scentre Group
Peter Allen is an executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of Scentre Group. Prior to the establishment of Scentre Group in 2014, Peter was an executive Director and Chief Financial Officer of Westfield Group. Peter joined Westfield in 1996 and between 1998 and 2004 was Westfield’s CEO of the United Kingdom / Europe and responsible for establishing Westfield’s presence in the United Kingdom. Peter is Chairman of the Shopping Centre Council of Australia and a Director of the Victor Chang Cardiac Research Institute and Essendon Football Club. He is a member of the President’s Council of the Art Gallery of NSW and is a member of the Property Council of Australia including his role as a Property Male Champion of Change.
Daniel Agostinelli, Group CEO, Accent Group Limited
Daniel began his career at 16, working in a music store. From there he went on to buy his own Music store in Sydney with business partner Brett Blundy & together they went on to build Sanity Music from 1 store in his mother’s Rumpus room.
Daniel sold out of the business after a public listing on the stock exchange in 1997. At 29 years old, he went to London looking for something new. He noticed trend setters wearing “trainers” & thought “this should catch on in Australia”. Daniel enthusiastically rushed back to Australia & bought a broken business of 5 stores named “Ghetto shoes” he re-branded & grew the business from 5 stores to 42 in only 2 years and sold it.
In 2006 Accent Group (a wholesale supplier to Ghetto shoes) aspired to get into the retail space and sought out Daniel to be an equity partner. From there, Accent bought 8 retail stores (Platypus) and again, he re-branded & grew the business.
Today the Accent group boasts over 430 stores. The business merged with RCG Group in May 2015 & in March 2016 purchased Hype DC. Daniel is now the Group CEO of Accent Group Limited which has 10 retail divisions, 10 wholesale divisions & 430 stores under 8 banners. They are a publicly listed company (AX1) with sales approaching $800 million and a market cap of $700 million with aspirations to enter the Asian market in 2018.
Erica Berchtold, CEO, The Iconic
Erica joined The Iconic in February 2019 as CEO. After nearly 20 years in predominantly “Bricks and Mortar” retail, the challenge of working in a pureplay business was too exciting a prospect to pass up, and she is relishing the opportunity to translate traditional retail strategies into the online space.
Prior to this Erica worked for over 7 years at Super Retail Group as Managing Director of the Sports Division (rebel and Infinite Retail), where she grew the top line sales from $600m to $1 billion whilst maintaining EBIT margins of ~10%. She believes her greatest accomplishment however was to be able to realise such growth against market trends whilst growing team member engagement from 43% to 69% and customer engagement (NPS) from 19% to 57%.
In 2016 Erica won the Michael Page Retail Executive of the Year Award and was a finalist in the InStyle Magazine ‘Women of Style’ Awards (business category).
Prior to joining Super Retail Group, Erica held a number of senior management positions including General Manager of two women's apparel businesses for Specialty Fashion Group, General Manager of Merchandise & Marketing for Rebel Sport and National Product Management roles at Harvey Norman and has nearly 20 years of Australian retail experience.
Erica is passionate about supporting women in business and women in sport and actively mentors in this area. She is an accomplished keynote speaker on a variety of topics, whether it be leadership journey for women in business or the future of retail.
Having graduated from the Australian Institute of Company Directors, Erica also has board experience as President of the Australian Sporting Goods Association, director of Western Sydney Wanderers Football Club and is currently a director of Sydney FC Football Club.
Moderated by Ingrid Willinge, Business Journalist
Ingrid Willinge is a prominent business journalist in Australia. She was an anchor on Sky News Business for more than 8 years and most recently presented on Nine’s joint venture with News Corp at Your Money. She hosted Trading Day: The Open, Trading Day: The Close, Lunch Money and the monthly interest rate meetings on Rates Live.
Ingrid regularly interviews top business leaders, economists and analysts, which throughout her career has included multiple CEO’s from ASX 200 and global companies.
Prior to becoming a finance journalist, Ingrid began her career in investment banking at Macquarie Group in Australia and then in institutional equities at Macquarie Group in New York.