From New York to Singapore: NRF 2024 to Spotlight Retail Innovations and Sustainability

SINGAPORE, May 23, 2024 – NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific will be held in Singapore from June 11 to 13, 2024. This event marks a significant milestone for the retail industry in the region. In a conversation with AsiaBizToday, Ryf Quail, Managing Director for NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific at Comexposium, provided insights on what attendees can expect from this landmark event and explained the context of NRF’s impact on the American retail industry.

Comexposium, organiser of NRF 2024: Retail’s Big Show Asia Pacific, is one of the world’s largest event organisers and runs the region’s leading marketing, e-commerce and media events.

NRF in the United States has been a cornerstone event in the retail calendar for over a century. “NRF is a cornerstone event of the US retail calendar,” Quail said. Held annually in New York, the event attracts around 40,000 participants and serves as a pivotal meeting point for retailers and vendors. It provides a platform for sharing insights, exploring innovations, and fostering collaboration across the retail sector. The US event has been instrumental in driving retail advancements, as industry professionals gather to discuss the latest trends, challenges, and opportunities.

Bringing NRF to the Asia Pacific region aims to replicate this success by creating a similar platform for regional retail leaders. Quail emphasized the strategic importance of this move, noting that the Asia Pacific region is home to 55-60% of the world’s shoppers. The event in Singapore is expected to significantly impact the retail landscape by fostering partnerships and expanding market understanding. “Many organizations are turning towards this part of the world, and the opportunity here is enormous,” he said.

One of the key highlights of NRF 2024 in Singapore will be the Innovation Lab. This specially curated section will feature cutting-edge retail technologies from around the world. “We’ve curated an Innovation Lab, working with VCs globally to bring the best new retail tech,” Quail explained. Attendees can expect to see innovations in artificial intelligence, augmented reality, RFID, and facial recognition. These technologies are designed to enhance customer service and operational efficiency, offering retailers new tools to stay competitive.

The conference will also showcase an impressive lineup of speakers from some of the world’s most renowned companies. Leaders from Hennesy, Uniqlo, Nike, ONDC, Coke, Walmart, and many others will share their insights and experiences. Quail expressed his excitement about this diverse array of speakers, noting that such a lineup has never been seen together on a stage in this part of the world before. “I’ve never had the opportunity to put together such a diverse and esteemed array of speakers,” he said. This event will provide valuable perspectives across various categories and regions, helping attendees accelerate their careers and businesses.

In addition to showcasing new technologies, the event will address critical issues such as data privacy and the impact of technology on retail margins. Quail emphasized that while technology adoption is essential, it must be balanced with profitability. “Good retail is good retail, and good retail makes money,” he stated. The event will explore how retailers can leverage technology to enhance their operations while maintaining healthy profit margins.

Sustainability will also be a major focus at NRF 2024. Quail highlighted a significant increase in compliance requirements for retailers to track sustainable practices. This shift reflects a growing recognition of sustainability as an essential aspect of retail. “There has been a massive lift in the compliance requirement for retailers to be able to track sustainable practices,” Quail noted. The event will feature discussions on integrating ethical and sustainable practices into retail operations, driven by regulatory requirements and consumer expectations.

Looking ahead, NRF Asia Pacific is set to become an annual event based in Singapore. Quail explained that Singapore was chosen as the host city due to its strategic location, excellent facilities, and supportive government agencies. “We’ve chosen to be in Singapore because it’s the central landing spot, the facilities are right, and the government agencies have been fantastic,” he said. The event will remain in Singapore for the foreseeable future, providing a central meeting point for the retail industry in the region.

NRF 2024 in Singapore promises to be a vibrant and dynamic event, offering unparalleled opportunities for networking, learning, and exploring the latest innovations in the retail industry. Attendees can look forward to a rich and engaging experience that will equip them with the knowledge and tools to thrive in the ever-evolving retail landscape.