Retail. Reimagined.

February 17 - 18, 2021 

Future Stores Connect Virtual Event

The Future Stores Connect Event is a virtual, cross industry, invite-only event customized for senior retail executives in operations, design, digital, and technology from the most innovative retailers.

Just like our in person Connect events this virtual event provides an exclusive, interactive, high-level platform for the exchange of ideas, best practices and timely perspectives during these turbulent times.

Attendees receive access to all educational content (fireside chats, panels, keynotes and roundtables) delivered by other senior executives and get the opportunity to have pre-scheduled 1-2-1 meetings with solution providers who can help you continue to create the next generation store experience.

A Unique Experience

The Future Stores Connect Virtual Event is an online forum mirroring our in-person Connect events. We’re bringing you exclusive knowledge from top-notch industry leaders at the touch of a button.

Here's what you get when you attend:

Future Stores Connect Virtual Event

Pre-Scheduled 1:1 Meetings

See someone on our attendee list you want to meet? Mutually matched and pre-scheduled 1:1 meetings with your prospects and peers make it easy to further business. No more fruitless conversation. No more tradeshows.

Future Stores Connect Virtual Event

Executive-Level Content

We provide custom-made, high-level content that fosters a fruitful dialogue among participants. Engage in in-depth discussions on the economic outlook for 2020 and beyond, and prep for a “new normal”.

Future Stores Connect Virtual Event

Exclusive Networking

Meet only the most senior-level executives in an intimate and interactive environment.

Our Speakers. Your Visionaries.

Carolyn Bojanowski

Carolyn Bojanowski

SVP, GM, eCommerce


Mike LaVitola

Mike LaVitola

CEO & Co-Founder


Krista Bourne

Krista Bourne

SVP and President, Sales and Operations, Verizon Consumer Group


Jason Williams

Jason Williams

VP, Athlete Technology

Dick's Sporting Goods

Brent Paulsen

Brent Paulsen

Managing Director, Head of Retail


Angela Gearhart

Angela Gearhart

VP, Brand Experience


Steven Freeman

Steven Freeman

Director, Product Management

Lowe's Companies, Inc.

Lisa Erickson

Lisa Erickson

Senior Director, CRM, Loyalty

Sleep Number Corporation

Sonia Anand

Sonia Anand

Director, Global Omni Channel Experience

MAC Cosmetics

Mark Cardinale

Mark Cardinale

Director, Retail Store Operations

The North Face

Sarah Tava

Sarah Tava

Director of Brand Stores

Fjallraven North America

Vicki Lyngstad

Vicki Lyngstad

Manager, Store Systems and Operations

Designer Brands

Will Eadie

Will Eadie

Digital Workplace Evangelist, Workjam CRO


Melissa Wong

Melissa Wong


Retail Zipline

Curtis Campbell

Curtis Campbell

Senior Marketing Manager


Jordan Ekers

Jordan Ekers

Co-Founder and CEO


Leslie Hand

Leslie Hand


IDC Retail Insights

Jeremy Duimstra

Jeremy Duimstra

SVP Connected Experiences


Alex Fisher

Alex Fisher

VP, Retail, North America


Future Stores Connect Agenda

Sessions listed in Eastern Time (ET)

Day One, February 17, 2021

    Accelerating Omnichannel Strategies

  • 12:00 pm - 12:30 pm

    12:00 pm - 12:30 pm

    What a way to start your day! Kick off your Future Stores Connect Virtual experience by joining your fellow retail peers in an informal speed networking activity. Like speed dating, you’ll have 5 minutes to meet with 1 or 2 retailers before rotating to the next session. You’ll meet lots of fellow peers before the virtual summit begins. Starter questions will be provided to help break the ice, so what are you waiting for? Don’t miss this opportunity meet your Future Stores retailer peers!

    Learn more
  • 12:30 pm - 12:35 pm

    12:30 pm - 12:35 pm

  • 12:35 pm - 12:45 pm

    12:35 pm - 12:45 pm

    Jordan Ekers, Co-Founder and CEO, Nudge

  • 12:45 pm - 1:15 pm

    12:45 pm - 1:15 pm

    Brent Paulsen, Managing Director, Head of Retail, UNTUCKit
    Sonia Anand, Director, Global Omni Channel Experience, MAC Cosmetics
    Steven Freeman, Director, Product Management, Lowe's Companies, Inc.
    Mike LaVitola, CEO & Co-Founder, Foxtrot
    Jeremy Duimstra, SVP Connected Experiences, Valtech

    Omnichannel execution has accelerated tremendously over the last year due to the COVID pandemic. What does the next phase of omnichannel look like, and how can you ensure that your channels work together efficiently to meet your customer needs? This session looks at topics like:

    • Ensuring that your channels look, feel, and operate as you need them to, while remaining in harmony with one another, rather than forcing them to offer duplicated experiences
    • Eliminating friction points that are impeding your customer’s journey
    • Rethinking your fulfillment strategies as omnichannel continues to rapidly change
    • Encouraging interaction between channels rather than integrating them into one experience
    • Harnessing the power of Harmonized Retail to meet and exceed the ever-increasing and changing expectations of today’s consumers
    Learn more
  • 1:15 pm - 1:35 pm

    1:15 pm - 1:35 pm

    Sarah Tava, Director of Brand Stores, Fjallraven North America
    Melissa Wong, CEO, Retail Zipline

    Despite its irrefutable damage to the retail industry, the pandemic helped many agile retailers accelerate innovation. In this session, we will learn how outdoor retailer, Fjällräven, was able to transform operationally to be more responsive to market demands and meet customers where they were. In this session you will learn:

    ·        The important link between communications and store execution

    ·        How to engage your fleet to drive better business results

    ·        The link between values and performance in times of uncertainty

    Learn more
  • 1:35 pm - 1:55 pm

    1:35 pm - 1:55 pm

    Carolyn Bojanowski, SVP, GM, eCommerce, SEPHORA

    This interview-style session looks at ways to better connect online and offline channels as the lines between them continue to blur.

    • Making strides to better connect the digital and the socially distant physical retail environment – offering safe and easy to implement omnichannel experiences
    • Using all data available to personalize and engage with customers
    • Thinking strategically about the entire journey and eliminating customer pain points, particularly as some customers adapt to digital
    • Helping store associates to be able to connect and support customers when in store, and doing so with new safety protocols
    Learn more
  • 1:55 pm - 2:05 pm

    1:55 pm - 2:05 pm

  • 2:05 pm - 2:35 pm

    2:05 pm - 2:35 pm

    Vicki Lyngstad, Manager, Store Systems and Operations, Designer Brands
    Curtis Campbell, Senior Marketing Manager, Hughes
    Mark Cardinale, Director, Retail Store Operations, The North Face

    As retailers pivot quickly to accommodate the new store environment, how are they handling customer expectation around the experience? How are they educating their associates around new protocols and new engagement strategies? A diverse group of retailers will share their lessons learned as their stores have reopened and customers and associates start to interact again. In this interview-styled session, we’ll discuss:

    • Ensuring your associates have the tools and techniques to be successful in a changed environment
    • Ideas for providing the best possible store experience while still following the new social distancing and safety protocols
    • How are you surprising and delighting your customers in new ways?
    • How has store design, merchandising and in store marketing changed post pandemic
    • New roles for the associate given the increase in curbside and BOPIS and the new safety standards
    Learn more
  • 2:35 pm - 2:55 pm

    2:35 pm - 2:55 pm

    Leslie Hand, VP, IDC Retail Insights

    The new normal for retail customers, the workforce, and business operations will be radically different in coming years. However, retailers do not have years to adapt, and as a result, 35.4% are investing in technology to close DX gaps. Retailers with leading digital commerce and fulfillment capabilities outperformed peers from a year over year growth perspective, offering evidence of the value in investing in the right technologies, business processes, and people to serve the consumer.

    The new normal requires continued investment in contactless and digital business, data to drive intelligent processes and workflow, and modernized IT. Join IDC for this event to hear more about:

    • How the big pivot to digital is changing your retail business model
    • How data, analytics and AI will underpin the modernization of business operations, products, and partner ecosystems 
    • A vision for the future of retail with guidance for how to get there

    Learn more
  • 2:55 pm - 3:20 pm

    2:55 pm - 3:20 pm

    Many retailers faced unprecedented shipping challenges as the pandemic forced store closures. Some revamped their store operations and quickly implemented omni-channel initiatives such as BOPIS, as others dealt with communication challenges with customers around the fulfillment and delivery of products. This in-depth chat reviews how to rethink your back-end operations to meet changing customer demand. 

    Review ideas for:

    • Balancing customer demand for shipping and fulfillment with the potential impact on your business
    • Rethinking the brick and mortar experience as a fulfillment opportunity
    • Impacting margin and profitability from a back-end perspective
    Learn more
  • 3:20 pm - 3:25 pm

    3:20 pm - 3:25 pm

  • 3:25 pm - 4:10 pm

    3:25 pm - 4:10 pm

    Potential topics:

    1. Designing Your Mobile App: How To Create The Ultimate Store Companion
    2. In With The New, Out With The Newly Outdated; How To Make Smarter Long-Term Store Tech Investments
    3. Getting More Out Of Your Store Associates: How Store Associates Can Drive Your Omnichannel Initiatives
    4. Prioritizing technology investments given potential budget restrictions and new customer behaviors
    5. Capturing Customer Data To Personalize the Shopping Experience
    Learn more
  • 4:10 pm - 4:10 pm

    4:10 pm - 4:10 pm

Day Two, February 18, 2021

    Retail Reinvention For The New Normal

  • 12:30 pm - 12:35 pm

    12:30 pm - 12:35 pm

  • 12:35 pm - 12:45 pm

    12:35 pm - 12:45 pm

  • 12:45 pm - 1:30 pm

    12:45 pm - 1:30 pm

    Angela Gearhart, VP, Brand Experience, SleepNumber
    Krista Bourne, SVP and President, Sales and Operations, Verizon Consumer Group, Verizon

    The store of the future will be a reflection of the modern consumer’s growing dependence on technology and their desire for personalized experiences. But what exactly will that look like and how can you prepare yourself to succeed in this new retail climate? During this crystal ball session, our panelists will look into the future of retail and provide insights for:

    • Determining which technologies are just novel inventions and which will stand the test of time
    • Leveraging technologies to provide added convenience to customers
    • Unlocking the power of technology to support your in-store initiatives
    • Learning what’s working, what’s not and how to continue to innovate
    • Deciding which technology investments, organization structure changes, and brand developments will best prepare you for the store of the future
    Learn more
  • 1:30 pm - 1:50 pm

    1:30 pm - 1:50 pm

    Will Eadie, Digital Workplace Evangelist, Workjam CRO, Workjam

    What made the difference between winning and losing in the last year? We analyzed what market leaders did to operate safely & successfully and how their actions have positioned them well for 2021. Sign up to learn

    • Which gap did all retailers have in common 10 months ago?
    • The approaches used to close that gap
    • Insights and Best Practices to strengthen your organization and reach your goals this year

    Learn more
  • 1:50 pm - 2:10 pm

    1:50 pm - 2:10 pm

    Jason Williams, VP, Athlete Technology, Dick's Sporting Goods

    The pandemic forced many retailers to make rapid changes and pivots in an extraordinarily short amount of time. This session looks at the successful transformation and pivot of a leading retailer, and how they were able to adapt the in-store experience during challenging times such as these.

    • Understanding how customer expectations have shifted in 2020
    • Creating a playbook for your brick and mortar experience in 2021
    • Determining customer trends and future shopping behaviors using data and insights
    • Defining and delivering a successful in-store customer experience long-term
    Learn more
  • 2:10 pm - 2:20 pm

    2:10 pm - 2:20 pm

  • 2:20 pm - 2:50 pm

    2:20 pm - 2:50 pm

    How can retailers continue to adapt and response to an ever changing retail landscape? Through transformation and innovation. This requires internal buy-in, organizational change, process revamps and much more. This group discussion delves into the possibilities in 2021, so you leave armed with tactics to innovate and keep your customers buying.

    • Creating a roadmap for innovation
    • Marrying digital and in-store
    • Identifying new business opportunities, products and initiatives
    • Being effective at transformation
    • Thinking about opportunities for innovation post-pandemic within your organization
    Learn more
  • 2:50 pm - 3:10 pm

    2:50 pm - 3:10 pm

    Alex Fisher, VP, Retail, North America, Afterpay

    An omnichannel approach is more critical for retailers than ever, as consumers have become accustomed to the ease and flexibility of online shopping. Buy Now, Pay Later should be a part of this equation, and Afterpay is making it possible (and easy!) for retailers to integrate the service in-store - attracting a large cohort of young, engaged customers to their brick-and-mortar locations.  

    · Bringing online convenience to the in-store experience, and why flexible payment options matter

    · How retailers can benefit from integrating Afterpay in-store 

    · Customer-centricity and the value that a cross-channel experience brings to the consumer 

    Learn more
  • 3:10 pm - 3:30 pm

    3:10 pm - 3:30 pm

    Lisa Erickson, Senior Director, CRM, Loyalty, Sleep Number Corporation

    Customers see the brands that they interact with, wear, and post about as an extension of their own personal brand and identity. As such, companies that integrate, acknowledge, or work towards finding solutions for social issues that are relevant to their customer base will win major points and drive customer loyalty. This session will feature actionable takeaways for:

    • Selecting causes or charities that are relevant to your product, brand identity and customer and developing authentic, cause-specific initiatives to benefit them
    • Encouraging consumers to host ‘shop for a cause’ events that support charities by donating a portion of proceeds from in-store sales at their shopping events
    • Updating your store to include energy efficient fixtures, features and technologies to minimize your environmental impact and win points with eco-conscious shoppers
    • Being purposeful and strategic in your support for social causes to maximize your impact on both the cause and your network of customers
    Learn more
  • 3:35 pm - 4:20 pm

    3:35 pm - 4:20 pm

    Let’s wrap up the conference meeting your retail peers! Each of our retailer roundtables has a specific topic to facilitate an in depth discussion. Chat it up with peers who can give you different perspectives on a ton of different challenge areas, and who share similar interests. This session is only open to retailers.

    Potential topics:

    1. Bolstering Customer Lifetime Value Through Loyalty Programs & Targeted Rewards

    2. Using Your Store For More: Creating A Community Space For Shoppers

    3. BOPIS and Curbside—What You Need To Know 

    4. Navigating Real Estate And Store Formats Post Covid

    Learn more
  • 4:20 pm - 4:20 pm

    4:20 pm - 4:20 pm

Word on the Street

“Future Stores is by far the best retail conference I’ve ever attended. Everything from the quality of the speakers to their actionable insights, to the audience was thoughtfully curated”

Mark Voysey, CEO


“I get out to many conferences and this may have been the best I’ve attended yet. Great content, meticulously organized, and great attendees”

Phillip Besner, VP, Real Estate & Business Development 


The flow of event was well paced, topics were thought provoking and it allowed interactions which were valuable.

Uday Prakash
Senior Director, Finance and Associate Operations

“The Future Stores event was a very diverse, enriching event that presented a variety of ideas and presentations. I left with the feeling that I learned a great deal.”

Brian Hack, Design Innovation Manager

Dunkin Brands

The flow of event was well paced, topics were thought provoking and it allowed interactions which were valuable.

Uday Prakash
Senior Director, Finance and Associate Operations

Bringing Together The Best In Retail

“The ability to transparently discuss the issues that we are facing today and collaborate on solutions and best practices is unparalleled. I value the thought leadership and the think tank is one of my favorite sessions at Future Stores.”

Colleen Lewis, SVP, Retail

Coldwater Creek

“Really good day. Great cross section of tech innovation and retailers. Very informative and thought provoking. Good opportunity to network outside my traditional landscape”

 Ernest Brown, Regional Director,

Ralph Lauren

“Future Stores is highly focused and engaging. The different presentation formats allowed for a great variety honest perspectives and good best practice sharing.”

Andreas Woelk, Senior Customer Experience, Research and Strategy

Kohl’s Digital

Why You Should Listen In

Why You Should Listen In

Future Stores Connect Virtual Event

No Cost If You Qualify
No Cost If You Qualify

All sessions are free of charge for qualifying attendees. This is major value at ZERO cost.
All sessions are free of charge for qualifying attendees. This is major value at ZERO cost.

Always Accessible Content

If you can't make all of the sessions, no biggie. Everyone registered gets a copy of the on-demand sessions.
If you can't make all of the sessions, no biggie. Everyone registered gets a copy of the on-demand sessions.

No OOO Necessary

Enjoy all the perks of a live event from the comfort of your own home.
Enjoy all the perks of a live event from the comfort of your own home.

Let’s Connect & Create A Custom Experience


Hi, I'm Rachel, the Sponsorship Director for Retail Tech Connect Virtual Event. Reach out by clicking the button below and I’ll be in touch within 24 hours. Looking forward to connecting!

In Partnership With:

How Our Virtual Events Work

Participating in a virtual event is easy. Once you and your team register, each of you will receive a link to access the presentations. You can also add the event to your Outlook or other calendar as a reminder. You do not need to download or install any software to participate. All you need is Internet access. The sessions will be recorded, and will be available for a limited time afterwards. It’s going to be a great event!