The GFRC with its by-line ‘The Annual Meeting Place for the Footwear Retail Industry’ has filled a gap in the footwear conference calendar since retail is very rarely mentioned at current events where production tends to dominate the conference agenda along with profiles of major manufacturing countries and the outlook for the industry.

The uncertain economic and political backdrop ruling at the time of the GRFC has led changes and fresh challenges in the retail environment. For example, a brand can have excellent designers, good quality manufacturing, latest styles and colours and have its target market well-defined and marketing strategy in place; but if the final interface with the consumer is not taken care of, then the new model or collection of a brand could be doomed to failure with the consequential loss of time and investment.

The Panels 
Attendees listened to three panels – one on the U.S market with reference to other major markets; the second presentation was the China Panel and the third was a panel with e-commerce specialists explaining the intricacies of this type of “multi-channel retailing”.

Click on the video below for a interview by Richard Smith of APLF with Carsten Lui, Marketing Director of Chinese footwear retailer, Belle International. Belle has 19,000 footwear retail stores throughout China.