Asda Chief Customer Officer to Discuss the State/Future of Retail at P2PSummit

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Asda Chief Customer Officer to Discuss the State/Future of Retail at P2PSummit

By April Miller - 04/22/2019

Disruption continues to drive the retail industry. How to leverage technology, the need to create in-store experiences for shoppers, consumer demand for transparency and many other changes have us asking what’s next and how we can succeed.

During the Path to Purchase Summit in May, Andy Murray will sit down with FCB/RED president Tina Manikas for a candid conversation about the state of retail and where it’s headed. Murray will share his insights honed from years of experience working as an agency executive and in the consumer goods industry.

Murray, the chief customer officer at Walmart-owned British supermarket operator Asda, previously served as Walmart’s SVP of creative and customer experience. In addition to founding Saatchi & Saatchi X, he has also held senior marketing and technology roles at Hallmark and Procter & Gamble. And he’s a Path to Purchase Institute Hall of Famer (2014 inductee).

 “Retail is largely a local business and the customer value proposition for a retailer always works in the context of the local market,” says Murray. “But a global perspective gives you a chance to see possible future scenarios that might become more important factors for your particular business model.”

The UK grocery market is one example. While e-commerce isn’t as prevalent there as in the U.S., growth of discounters continues to cause disruption, he says. Other markets can learn from these challenges, even if they may be three to five years off.

 “If you go to Spain and visit a Mercadona, you’ll see a unique format for a grocery store that combines service counters with great theatre combined with more club-type aisles for commodity ambient lines with a simplified range that manages pack-sizes in a unique way,” says Murray. “Every market gives you a look into possible format scenarios based on a myriad of conditions that effect the customer value proposition.”

There are many factors putting pressure on the retail business model, Murray says — everything from growth in private brands to strains around labor costs — and there is no one-size-fits-all sustainable business model. “Just look at how difficult it has been for Amazon to optimize the Whole Foods acquisition,” he says.

More important than copying another retailer’s model is making sure the right questions are being asked and the right problems are being solved. “How do we get clarity about the future at a time of great uncertainty? I think there are some answers in looking at the power of principles in retail that are worth discussing,” Murray says. “Rules to follow demand a high level of certainty but principles can create leverage points for when the environment is dynamic and changing.”

Changes coming with 5G technology and blockchain as well as brand and retailer partnerships and the experiences that shoppers want in physical stores will also be part of the conversation between Murray and Manikas. “Tina works with a wide range of clients across global,” Murray says. “She’s got an incredible degree of insight into customer trends and behaviors, so I think we’ll all come away having learned something new.”

For more information on the event, visit Path2PurchaseSummit.com.