Digital is in the Air at RTC 2013

At the seventh annual RIS Retail Technology Conference, held April 10-12 at the Omni Championsgate in Orlando, FL, 125 retail executives heard from top retailers including Target, Build-A-Bear Workshop and AT&T Mobility, and got first-hand real-world advice on “Relevant Retail: Cracking the Code” in educational sessions and hands-on workshops.

Keynote speaker Paul Roth, president of retail sales and service for AT&T Mobility, kicked off the conference emphasizing the importance of integrating the advantages of store-based retail with the advantages of the Web to create a personalized shopping experience.

A CIO Panel discussion featuring Peter Girgis of Dunn-Edwards Corporation, Russ Rosen of Rooms To Go Furniture and Dick Mader, ARTS director emeritus revealed that as CMOs gain importance, CIOs must be prepared to collaborate with them, working hand-in-hand.

Gartner’s research vice president Jeff Roster, presenting results from the 23rd Annual Retail Technology Study, noted that “Retailers will undergo the most transformative period in their careers over the next three years.”

In the closing keynote, Dave Finnegan, chief innovation and information officer for Build-A-Bear Workshops identified the key influence on the retailer’s move to its store of the future concept. “The mom of today is more digitally connected than ever before. Behind every digitally connected kid is a digitally connected mom.”

The next RIS event will be the 2013 Retail Executive Summit, taking place June 19-21 at the Grand Del Mar, Del Mar, CA. Visit for more infor

Scenes from the Retail Technology Conference: (Top row, l-r): Robert Fort, Wet Seal; Frank Zarrello, Terry Donofrio, Retail Systems & Services; RTC honorary chairperson Melissa Flicek, Target Corp. (Middle row, l-r): Paul Roth, AT&T Mobility; Jeff Roster, Gartner; Dave Finnegan, Build-A-Bear Workshop. (Bottom row, l-r): RIS group editor-in-chief Joe Skorupa; Peter Girgis, Dunn-Edwards Corp.; Dick Mader, ARTS; Russ Rosen, Rooms To Go.