Chairing a panel at The Walpole’s Far Eastern Growth Summit on Luxury

I’m a massive fan of the work that Walpole does in creating a voice and forum for the luxury market in the UK, and especially providing a space to discuss digital developments.

I was pleased therefore to contribute once more to their events, this time by chairing the panel on digital luxury.

Ian Jindal introducing the panel discussion at The Walpole’s Fast Eastern Summit in April 2015, London


The panel comprised Ken Ardali, @alibaba_group ; Anson Bailey, KPMG; Thomas Crampton, Ogilvy & Mather; Adrian Moss, Demandware; and Michael Ward @harrods  #WalpoleSummit

You can see a write-up of the event here:



Chairing ChannelAdvisor’s Catalyst EU Conference

It was my pleasure to return as Chair to Catalyst 2013, Channeladvisor’s European conference.

This year the format was a mix of presentations and ‘fireside chats’ (even though we had no fire!).

I had a fun session with the irrepressible Chris Poad from Amazon – candid, engaging and fun as ever, and continuing his track record of never ducking a question.

Ian Jindal and Chris Poad having a ‘fireside chat’ at Catalyst 2013

I then had an equally candid and no-holds barred chat with Ashley Payne of Debenhams and Helena Risdale of Littlewoods Clearance.

Ian Jindal, Helena Risdale (Littlewoods Clearance) and Ashley Payne (Debenhams) having a ‘fireside chat’ at Catalyst 2013

Details of the event are here:

and there’s a live-blog transcript of my chat with Mr Poad here:

My thanks to ChannelAdvisor for their warm welcome and ever, and for the additional and generous support of my fundraising for Sonia.

Speaking and Chairing: IADS and SocialMediaInfluence

In a busy and extremely interesting week I was privileged to be invited to the conference of the International Association of Departments Stores ( Frederik Nieuwenhuys (Director at and I gave the opening keynote and were invited to stay for the remainder of the conference. A really stimulating and convivial two days. The event was hosted by De Bijenkorf at their Amsterdam flagship.

I’ve written a post about the IADS conference on my blog.

Earlier in the week I chaired a session at the SocialMediaInfluence conference (conference site), organised by my friend and occasional collaborator, Matthew Yeomans (now at RadarDDB). There was a real feeling of a common interest at the day, along with much twittering, discussion about twittering and some discussion /on/ twitter… 😉

My post on the conference is on my blog.

A couple of weeks’ break from speaking now – time to concentrate on preparing the Managing Digital Teams training series that I’m running for Econsultancy.

Chairing session at The Walpole Luxury eBusiness Forum – “Luxury Online – Upside in a Cold Climate”

I was pleased to be invited to an ‘in conversation’ and Chairing session at The Walpole’s  Luxury eBusiness Forum, held at the RAC on 8 October.

The Walpole British Luxury

Some great speakers and an interesting and engaged delegate list. As ever, the real value was in the 1:1 conversations over coffee. The take-away for me is that in these difficult times there are opportunities for brands whose focus blends quality and service. At the higher price-points value is more important than price to the more affluent customer. Empty brand promises are exposed ruthlessly online so the opportunity for strong multichannel sales can be damaged by timid or inept online activity.

Chairing: IAB ‘Ask the Experts’ event on Loyalty and Cashback

I was invited by the IAB to chair their ATE session on “Affiliate Marketing: Loyalty and Cashback” on Wednesday 24th.

I know from my recent speaking on Affiliates that the changing landscape as a result of the rise of cashback sites has created some controversy and concern, and equally from a retail perspective there’re questions as to the relative tactical versus strategic aspects of cashback. There’s no denying the responsive, even pavlovian, effects on sales that cashback promotion can achieve – but the question is about brand value, who has the relationship with the customer and whether there’s “loyalty” to anything or anyone other than getting cash back and therefore habitually cheaper prices.

To put perspectives we had:

  • Richard Yendall, Chairman, The Loyalty Association (speaking as a cashback affiliate, as well as for that association)
  • Helen Southgate, Head of Affiliates, DGM (looking from an agency/network perspective at issues and considerations)
  • Peter Wakim, Head of Business Development, Quidco (speaking for one of the most well-known and powerful of the cashback sites)
  • Matt Bailey, Head of Affiliates, iLevel (asking questions from a merchant’s perspective, but also sharing research showing that cashback vs ‘normal’ affiliates’ performances are not as generally accepted).

Beer afterwards ensured that the questions continued well after the close of formal proceedings.

The IAB’s venue is a handy, well-appointed and nicely-sized one for these 50-person events and I hope that they’ll be doing more of them in future.

Details of the event, along with speaker presentations, are on the event page, while you can see their events programme here.

Google Retail Summit – moderating “Scaling and Managing the $1bn Online Business”

Retail Summit

Google UK have convenened an interesting and senior morning on etail and ecommerce. You can see the list of speakers at the website – quite a gathering.

I’m pleased to be moderating a session on “Scaling and Managing the $1bn Online Business”. I do this with some humility since the last ecommerce business I ran (while Group eCommerce Director at Littlewoods Shop Direct) was “only” £405million. The current £:$ rate is flattering of my efforts though – $800m sounds like a lot more – but failing a slump in the value of the dollar (!) I currently do not qualify for membership of the $1bn-club. Not yet, at least 😉

The panellist will include Bruce Fair (MD, Kelkoo), Matthew Hardcastle (MD, and Peter Fitzgerald (Retail Industry Leader, Google UK).