Second-hand products, more sustainable brands and the ongoing delivery revolution are just some of the leading trends that are currently impacting the development of the e-commerce sector and which will be unpacked at ECOM Africa in Cape Town from 4-5 May.
This will be the eighth edition of this flagship, specialist gathering in the e-commerce, retail and fintech sectors and the first hybrid edition, with limited tickets available for the in-person event at the CTICC and the online broadcast.
Understanding and meeting the customers
“Only 1% of GDP in South Africa is in e-commerce,” says ECOM Africa MD Terry Southam. “That means there is still huge opportunity for growth and the opportunities and challenges are increasing in tandem with the massive explosion in e-commerce we have seen over the past couple of years. Understanding the customers and meeting them where they are is paramount to breakthrough success.”
He continues: “We are looking forward to hosting a thousand selected guests in May this year for our first in-person event since the pandemic. We have a true who’s who in our keynote line-up, including Alex Genov, head of customer experience research at Zappos, who will specifically focus on customer loyalty and data. In fact, we have several world-class international speakers with backgrounds in customer experience, data science and building a digital-first business from the ground up.
“The expo floor will feature select in-person keynotes and Q&As, and a knowledge bar with select keynote speakers. Our full conference ticket gets you access to all our keynotes and panel discussions along with live Q&A. All information regarding the two tickets is available on our website. Online attendees will also be able to participate, learn, share and inspire.”
The programme will cover topics from store design and optimisation, marketing and brand building, payments and security, logistics and fulfilment, and business operations.
Trends defining 2022
“Sustainability, reusability, fulfilment and DTC (direct-to-consumer) are definitely the buzzwords in the e-commerce space right now,” Southam explains.
“Consumers are increasingly seeking out sustainable brands; this is especially true for younger audiences. The same goes for second-hand items, which has become a rapidly growing market segment. Fulfilment and delivery underwent a revolution during the pandemic and is constantly evolving with shorter delivery times and same-day delivery made possible through partnerships between retailers and delivery services. There are major roadblocks such as labour, but the revolution will continue.”
“There is also a noticeable upward trend of brands going DTC,” Southam says, “with manufacturers and wholesalers selling directly to customers to avoid retailers and intermediaries, thanks to e-commerce.”
ECOM Africa’s 40-plus confirmed speaker line-up so far includes:
Keynote speakers include:
- Alex Genov, head of customer experience research, Zappos, LA
- Michael Ros, CEO/co-founder, Bidroom, the Netherlands
- Liam McCreedy, founder, Quench, South Africa
- Vincent Viviers, GM of Pick n Pay Online marketing and commercial, South Africa
Other expert speakers, panellists and moderators include:
- Tanuj Shekhar, group director of logistics, Jumia, Portugal
- Dirk van der Walt, co-owner and co-founder, WeBuyCars, South Africa
- George Mienie, CEO, Autotrader, South Africa
- Laurian Venter, director, OneDayOnly, South Africa
- Joseph Sindaha, head of e-business, Nestlé, South Africa
- Lauren Hartzenberg, managing editor and retail editor, Bizcommunity, South Africa
- Ajibola Olayiwola, head of marketing, Konga Shopping, Nigeria
- James Mew, founder and MD, Mentality, South Africa (based in Portugal)
- Greg le Roux, CEO, Loot.co.za, South Africa
- Paris Philippou, vice president, B2C websites, group e-commerce, Massmart, South Africa
- Jamie Ostrowick, chief technology officer, Bidorbuy, South Africa
- Christoph Steyn, MD, Rugged, South Africa
- Diana Bett, MD, Purpinks Gifts, Kenya
- Carol Odero, editor-in-chief, CIO Africa, Kenya
- Dumi Mahlangu, founder of Chepa Streetwear, South Africa
- Heinrich van Eck, director, Rugged, South Africa
- Llyod Abrahams, supply chain and logistics director, The Foschini Group, South Africa
An exciting part of the hybrid event in Cape Town will be the partner showcases with the latest innovative technologies, products and services to assist online retailers in reaching their customers faster and more effectively. ECOM Africa partners Worldpay, Fareye, Insaka, Dataweave, Unisa and The Courier Guy, which will have a strong presence throughout the event. They will share their experiences with the audience and also interact digitally with them.
Register and contacts
To join for the full two days of in-depth keynotes, panel discussions, networking and live Q&A sessions, purchase an All-Access Pass conference ticket or Expo Pass here.
ECOM Africa dates and location
When and where: Live, in-person and online conference and expo on 4-5 May 2022
Location: CTICC, Cape Town, South Africa
Facebook: ECOM Africa
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