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IRX 2016 PREVIEW The International and cross border conference

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The International and Cross Border conference is the focus for today’s preview of IRX 2016. It’s part of a series of previews focusing on event highlights, from the conferences to interviews with key retail speakers, and beyond at this year’s InternetRetailing Expo (IRX 2016) (April 27-8, at the NEC in Birmingham).

International trading

Selling overseas is proving an important growth markets for retailers operating in the highly competitive UK market. Those who are doing so successfully have often seen significant growth in sales. But they’ve also come up against challenges as they contend with different shopping cultures, logistics and payment systems.

The International and Cross Border conference at IRX 2016 brings together retailers both large and small to share their experiences and learnings of international digital trade.

Conference director Lisa Ploude says those attending the conference will gain important insights into developing and rolling out international sales strategies. “International and Cross Border will showcase strategies for overcoming significant challenges of planning, establishing and growing retail operations in multiple countries. It’s a must visit for those who want to hear how UK retailers are evaluating the risk of entering new territories and taking advantage of growth opportunities in both established and emerging international markets.”

Dieter Kindl, chief executive of Rakuten Austria, is the opening keynote speaker in the conference, where he’ll consider the advantages and disadvantages of selling through online marketplaces. He’ll ask what traditional retailers can learn from trading on marketplaces about customer buying preferences and the demand for products. His keynote address, Achieving growth through online marketplaces, is at 10.05am.

Kieran Clinton-Tarestad, global head of ecommerce at Gant, then takes a strategic look at where the opportunities lie in international trade, asking which models, channels and markets offer the greatest opportunities, and what strategies can mean the different between success and failure. Global expansion – top tips from a retail trailblazer, is at 10.40am.

Glen Richardson, chief marketing officer at Fruugo, takes to the stage with a consideration of the role of payments in overseas expansion. His presentation, International payments as a route to international expansion, is at 11.15am.

A panel of speakers then considers the different business models that can underpin sales in overseas markets. Kelly Kowal, global growth director at, Rob Pye, global ecommerce director at ghd, and Steven Hope, senior ecommerce advsier at UK Trade & Investment, are among the panellists. A deep dive into the successful business models driving international expansion is at 12.30pm.

At 1.15pm there’s a presentation from the track sponsor.

Then Kate Smyth, director of ecommerce at the Dune Group, is the speaker for a session on how smaller retailers can profit from online to grow their international sales. She’ll be asking if big is always better. Her presentation, International ecommerce – how smaller retailers can create ripples (and storms) in global waters! is at 2.45pm.

Phil Pavitt, global CIO at Specsavers, then looks at what infrastructure is needed when retailers sell to global audiences. His closing keynote address, Transforming your IT to meet the demands of a global company, is at 3.20pm.

The International and Cross Border conference will take place on April 27 2016 at IRX 2016, at Birmingham’s NEC. Find out more about the conference here, and more about IRX 2016 here. Register to visit the show for free here.

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