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The Top 5 Pure Retail, Apparel, and Luxury Brands

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"Brands will matter more in the world the virus leaves behind, and those that work now to build trust by acting, visibly and decisively, with an essential and authentic purpose, will be among the survivors. If they find new reserves of agility, creativity, and resolve, they can shape the way consumers view them in the midst of the crisis, and emerge not just with a viable business, but a sharp competitive edge." - BrandZ 2020 Report

Every year I look forward to the latest BrandZ Global Most Valuable Brands Report. Timely for 2020, BrandZ published a separate Global Top 75 Retail Brands edition that includes in-depth COVID-19 analysis on the impact of the pandemic to brands.  

"The combined value of the BrandZ Top 75 Most Valuable Retail Brands has risen by 12% in the past year, to $1.514 trillion. These brands come from four sub-categories: Pure Retail, Fast Food, Apparel and Luxury, and they are growing despite – and in some cases as a result of – severe disruption in the market."

This article summarizes some of my favorite insights from the 131 pages 2020 retail report. 

Top 5 Global Retail Brands

 

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Latest Post COVID-19 Global GDP and Retail Forecasts

For the last couple of months during the lockdown, I have been extremely busy continuing to speak with retailers, working several board opportunities, setting up an in-house studio, opening a new YouTube Channel, hiring research resources, and participating in a plethora of podcasts and webinars. Because of COVID-19, my primary focus has shifted to providing intensive data-backed analysis to the "new normal" ahead.

This article summarizes the latest data from multiple leadership sources on the near term economic and retail challenges from COVID-19. All the trends confirm a post pandemic "New Normal".

What will be the 2020 GDP impact to key economies? Which consumer categories are positive? Which continent will lead the recovery? How many USA stores have reopened? Will it be a V, U, or L shaped retail recovery? How long will it take for key USA retail sectors to recover? Is online retail permanently eating the consumer world? Where do we go from here?

Worldwide COVID-19 GDP / Consumer Expenditures Impact

 

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In 2019, China was projected to surpass the United States to become the world's largest retail market. On November 11, 2019, Alibaba celebrated a record $38 billion in online retail sales during the Singles' Day 24-hour shopping holiday. 

Because of the USA trade wars and subsequently COVID-19, the euphoric rise of China in being THE number one country in retail has been delayed. Notwithstanding this ascension, China continues to be the digital laboratory for the future of retail. 

In this article, we explore a few of the China emerging technologies deployed during the lockdown which have a direct impact on retail. Next, we look at the digital innovation steps leading to the reopening of a "new normal" retail industry.

There's an App for That Pandemic Track

Very impressive is a recent presentation from Andreessen Horowitz on the number of apps deployed in China to fight COVID-19. Linked to the Alipay (Alibaba) mobile payment system, one of the examples apps provides a color QR code on your health. 

 

The Latest Post Pandemic Retail Sales Forecasts

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"At a time when people were confined to their homes, we moved swiftly to leverage our digital app ecosystem and Nike expert trainer network to inspire and support consumers across China to stay active and connected while at home. As a result, our Nike Training Club (NTC) workouts in China saw an extraordinary rise in signup and engagement. In fact, our weekly active users for all of our Nike activity apps were up 80% by the end of Q3 versus the beginning of the quarter.

And here's what happened - the strong engagement of Chinese consumers with our activity apps translated into strong engagement with our Nike commerce app. As a result, our digital business in China grew more than 30% and maintained strong momentum throughout this challenging period, a powerful statement of Nike’s agile problem-solving in times of disruption." - Nike CEO

During China's peak of the COVID-19 outbreak earlier this year, nearly 760 million people were in some form of home lockdown. Above Nike response is an example of the positive actions taken by retailers during the health crisis.

This article summarizes the COVID-19 China's "new retail" strategies, generational commerce transformation trends, and the latest global / regional retail sales forecasts post the pandemic. 

China COVID-19 Lessons Accelerating the Future of Retail

Conceived by Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma, "New Retail is a critical chapter in the comeback story of physical retail, and the digitization of all retail." As China has now transitioned through most of the COVID-19 crisis, here are a few lessons from new retail:

 

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At the recent annual conference of the International Supply Chain Protection Organization (ISCPO), it was a great pleasure to deliver the latest edition of my continuously updated 'Disruptive Future of Retail' presentation. As it is top of mind for everyone, my opening remarks focused on supply chains and the growing global concerns with the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Timely to the conference was my last article, 'The Coronavirus and Its Predictable Future of Retail'. As I expressed to the audience, the end of the health crisis is uncertain but multiple historical lessons point to eventual retail recovery and stabilization. 

"By stimulating (more aggressive China) demand for online shopping, the outbreak has highlighted the broader need for traditional retailers to keep moving away from a reliance on brick-and-mortar stores to an omnichannel model." As my futuristic presentation explores, China on multiple levels was already leading retail disruption. COVID-19 will accelerate digital transformation trends to the rest of the world. 

This article summarizes just a few of the NEW charts from the 2020 edition of the Disruptive Future of Retail. 

The $30 Trillion Retail Opportunity

 

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This week, I was invited by Rethink Retail to speak about the actions retailers should be taking in response to the growing global concerns with the coronavirus. In this article, I will summarize some of the information shared in the podcast plus additional post analysis insights with focus on major economies and retail.

The new coronavirus, officially renamed COVID-19 by the World Health Organization (WHO), is thought to have jumped to a human from a yet-to-be-identified animal host. "Based on current estimates, scientists say the new virus has a reproductive value of between 2.24 to 3.58, meaning an infected person could pass on the pathogen to between two and four people. In order to contain the outbreak, that value has to be reduced to below 1."

The Global Impact of Coronavirus

A new study indicated that the coronavirus could impact over 5 million businesses worldwide. Dun & Bradstreet research found that "51,000 companies worldwide, 163 of which are in the Fortune 1000, have one or more direct or 'Tier 1' suppliers in the (primary China) impacted region."

 

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This is the second article covering the innovation leadership activities around NRF 2020. My previous post summarized the three most impactful perfect vision takeaways of NRF 2020.

Just prior to the New York NRF Big Show, a favorite activity every year is to attend the information-packed RetailROI SuperSaturday. This industry leading event brings together "retail’s most prominent thinkers for revealing discussions on Digital Transformation, Unified Commerce, Marketplaces and best practices for being a Retail leader in today’s fast-paced world—all for a greater cause".

From this year's 11th SuperSaturday edition, here is a summary of the altruistic work of RetailROI and the latest research on the strategic 2020 retail digital transformation technologies. 

A True RetailROI Human Difference

The purpose of the RetailROI is to raise awareness and provide real solutions for the more than 400 million children vulnerable worldwide. In just ten years, RetailROI has made substantial progress in making an appreciable human difference to the world by helping over 250,000 children in 25 countries. 

 

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 40,000 Attendees / 800 Exhibitors / 99 Countries / 60,000 Personal Walking Steps

This is the first of multiple articles covering the Retail Big Show NRF 2020. As others have summarized the insights of the sessions and speakers, my primary focus in this post will be the futurist innovation trends from the trade show floor.  The next article will cover the key takeaways from RetailROI SuperSaturday, the place to be for inspiring and exclusive industry intelligence just prior to the start of NRF. 

Thematically, artificial intelligence (AI) was the passport to innovation entry to NRF 2020. Winning demonstrations were focused on identifying and delivering competitive advantages in the deployment of differentiated immersive consumer experiences across channels. 

Surprised this year in being able to identify 36 distinctive technology innovation trends on the trade show floor. After a very busy NRF 2020, here my three summarized most impactful perfect vision takeaways of NRF 2020.  

Computer Vision Discerns the Center of the Retail Store

 

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Retail Future Can You Hear Me Now

Welcome to the continued age of digital transformation. The contenders for being the number one innovation disruptor of the last decade includes the explosion of e-commerce, the growth of cloud services, 3.5 billion people using social media, the mobile internet with 61% of the global population connected, over 9 billion Internet-of-Things (IoT) connected devices, ever efficient lithium ion batteries. the expansion of biometrics such as facial recognition, billions of RFID labels in use especially in retail apparel, and voice devices such as Alexa coming into our homes.  

The number one disruptive technology of the last decade was the smartphone. Technically, Apple kicked-off the successful launch of this solution in the prior decade (2007), but few could have foreseen the consequential impact in the 2010s. 

Augmenting the recent "Perfect 2020 Mobile Vision Future of Retail" post, this article summarizes the chain-reaction smartphone elements underway in the new retail decade. As a recent 'Retail 2030' report pointed out, in the 2020s we are in unchartered territory. 

"As consumers delegate tedious and transactional shopping to bots and virtual assistants, choice will be firmly in the domain of the algorithm, with minimal consumer intervention. When bots do the buying, the connection between retailers and their consumers, and the ability to influence them, will be broken. Appealing to a bot will be unchartered territory involving new skills, techniques and platforms."

Smartphones Already Represent 34% of All USA Ecommerce Sales

 

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My last article summarized the positive (green shopper) digital consumer transformation trends from the latest edition of the "Disruptive Future of Retail" presentation. As the audience from the recent keynote was primarily from loss prevention, in appreciation of their positive response and engagement, this post expands on the retail shrinkage industry data, including multiple new charts not presented due to time constraints. 

The continued renaissance of the global retail industry will require increased innovation to protect employees, customers, and products. Traditional security solutions that typically increase friction to deter theft are counter to the new digitally empowered consumer that progressively wants to just scan and go. 

The $51 Billion USA Retail Challenge

The latest NRF national shrink survey, "tells a story of a dramatically changing retail risk landscape, with new threats and challenges being met at each turn with new loss prevention tools. Progress is being made, but LP teams continue to face setbacks and challenges with new and expanding areas of threat."