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They’re passionate, they’re candid and completely uncensored - 5 retail industry leaders as you’ve never seen them before!

Each session we tackle a different challenge faced by today’s retailers. We uncover what some of the industry's leading experts have done to overcome these challenges and also bring to light the new business trajectories many have set upon as a result. Masterclasses are run as virtual interview sessions and hosted by one of our fabulous Inside Retail editors.

Blaine Callard

CEO
Freedom
More Info
Monday, 28 February, 2022  1:00 pm HKT

No more “vanilla”: Reinventing a retail icon in the age of omnichannel

Last year, 40-year-old Australian furniture retailer Freedom underwent a transformation, which involved a major rebrand, a return to its design-led roots and a focus on omnichannel. After all, in this current climate, it’s no secret that boring retail is dying and businesses that refuse to change are on their way out.  Here, Freedom CEO Blaine Callard reveals what it’s like to turn around a major retail business and the importance of investing in people.

Last year, 40-year-old Australian furniture retailer Freedom underwent a transformation, which involved a major rebrand, a return to its design-led roots and a focus on omnichannel. After all, in this current climate, it’s no secret that boring retail is dying and businesses that refuse to change are on their way out. 

Here, Freedom CEO Blaine Callard reveals what it’s like to turn around a major retail business and the importance of investing in people.

Blaine Callard

CEO
Freedom
Blaine has been involved with consumers and retail for over 26 years. He previously headed the turnaround of Harvey Norman's Irish, UK and European businesses, and in 2019, he took the reins as CEO of Australasian furniture and homewares retailer Freedom. Blaine prides himself on being an outspoken advocate for the longevity and continuing value of bricks-and-mortar retail - as part of a harmonised omni-channel operation. He says: “People love to shop, and the act of shopping should never be confused with the act of buying. Shopping is recreation, inspiration, education, physical, tactile, exploratory, and social. Quality, value-added retail drives demand. A great shop is far more than shelves from which products are sold.”

Steve Terry

Youtime
CEO
More Info
Tuesday, 1 March, 2022  1:00 pm HKT

The demise of transactional retail

An early pioneer in the beauty and wellness e-commerce industry, Steve Terry has founded and owned some of the world’s largest digital platforms. His view on the way we do business, the relationship between brands and their customers, and the importance of holistic consumer and industry offerings is unmatched. As a visionary change maker, Steve has observed the demise of transactional retail and the rise of experiential retail in building meaningful customer relationships. His new venture, youtime, launching in 2022, is grounded in community and content first. In this session, he takes us through his strategy and explains how retailers can convert transactional customer relationships into life-long connections.

An early pioneer in the beauty and wellness e-commerce industry, Steve Terry has founded and owned some of the world’s largest digital platforms. His view on the way we do business, the relationship between brands and their customers, and the importance of holistic consumer and industry offerings is unmatched. As a visionary change maker, Steve has observed the demise of transactional retail and the rise of experiential retail in building meaningful customer relationships. His new venture, youtime, launching in 2022, is grounded in community and content first. In this session, he takes us through his strategy and explains how retailers can convert transactional customer relationships into life-long connections.

Steve Terry

Youtime
CEO
Steve’s early career as an International Artistic Director and owner of Toni & Guy in Sweden saw him become one of the world’s most influential and award winning celebrity hairdressers. In 2012 he founded Stockholm beauty and wellness destination YOU, followed by theyouway.com, a purpose & content led e-commerce platform founded in 2011, which, in a world first, was sold to media giant Schibstedt, and became Europe’s largest fashion search and beauty and lifestyle e-commerce offering. Steve then became co-owner, Creative and Business Development Director of Lyko, which in 2017 was listed on Nasdaq Nordic and today is Scandinavia’s largest beauty e-commerce site, with an annual revenue of $300M AUD annually.  In Australia, Steve led the digital transformation and new strategic direction of Hairhouse, a company turning over approximately $200 million annually. In early 2022, he will be launching youtime.com - a purpose-led wellness destination of community, content, and commerce.

Panel

Shanthi Murugan, Deni Todorović and Lisa Cox
More Info
Wednesday, 2 March, 2022  1:00 pm HKT

The importance of diversity and inclusion in retail

In this session we speak with three industry professionals about their experiences (both personal and in business) of dealing with diversity and inclusivity in retail and how they have long been overlooked. Head of Campaign and Strategy at Adore Beauty, Shanthi Murugan’s mission is to ensure that no other person of colour would ever have to experience exclusion from an industry intended to make you feel good.   Style By Deni is a vocal activist for queer rights and human rights and pushes the narrative forward around topics of gender, sexuality, politics, race and equality. They are a respected voice within the industry, advocating for inclusivity and inclusive language. Deni identifies as gender non-conforming and presents themself as a neutral combination of gender expression, of which they affectionately call ‘The Space...See more

In this session we speak with three industry professionals about their experiences (both personal and in business) of dealing with diversity and inclusivity in retail and how they have long been overlooked.

Head of Campaign and Strategy at Adore Beauty, Shanthi Murugan’s mission is to ensure that no other person of colour would ever have to experience exclusion from an industry intended to make you feel good.  

Style By Deni is a vocal activist for queer rights and human rights and pushes the narrative forward around topics of gender, sexuality, politics, race and equality. They are a respected voice within the industry, advocating for inclusivity and inclusive language. Deni identifies as gender non-conforming and presents themself as a neutral combination of gender expression, of which they affectionately call ‘The Space In Between’.

Lisa Cox, award-winning media professional, author and public speaker, uniquely fuses her modelling and academic media/advertising background with her lived experiences of disability. Everyday she is changing the way disability is represented in mainstream popular culture, including the fashion industry. 

Together, we learn how to create authentic inclusivity in business for both customers and staff. Our panel will take us through their own experiences, where and how to get started in our own businesses and what to do if it all goes wrong.

Panel

Shanthi Murugan, Deni Todorović and Lisa Cox
About Shanthi

Shanthi Murugan is armed with a decade of experience working in the Australian beauty industry. As the Head of Campaign & Strategy at Adore Beauty, Australia’s leading online beauty retailer, Shanthi has managed and led the success of over 200+ leading global beauty brands including the growth of Kérastase, M.A.C Cosmetics, SkinCeuticals and Estée Lauder in the Australian eCommerce space.

Adore Beauty has grown twenty times in revenue and is now an ASX listed company.

About Deni

With 55K followers, Deni is a highly sought-after content creator with their IGTV series called One Night Only. They interview some of the biggest names in the industry to share with and educate their followers on the importance of equality. Deni’s core values are to inform and inspire, whilst always remaining authentic to their sense of self. Deni also has 12 years of industry and freelance experience in fashion, with roles spanning across Fashion Editor, Celebrity Stylist, Creative Director, Content Creator and Host. As a creative professional, Deni's authenticity and sense of imagination shines through their work

About Lisa

Starting out as a copyright for advertising agencies, these days Lisa is a freelance writer contributing to national and international publications like the HuffPost and The Sydney Morning Herald. She is also the author of two books, a presenter, an advocate and ambassador. She firmly believes that we all have challenges but we also have choices and whilst her challenges may look different to others often the principles are similar.

“I never planned to have my world turned upside down, I never planned to be disabled and I never planned to lose a lot (including some body parts!). But I did choose to always make the very best of what I do have. Doing this in your life can make the difference between merely existing and truly living with purpose.”

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