September 28, 2021
Retail Executive Panel
Founder of Blinds.com
JAY STEINFELD founded and was the CEO of Blinds.com, the world’s number one online window covering retailer. Boot-strapped in 1996 for just $3,000 from his Bellaire, Texas, garage, Blinds.com was acquired by The Home Depot in 2014.
Jay remained as its CEO and later joined The Home Depot Online Leadership Team. After stepping away from these roles in early 2020, he teaches entrepreneurship at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business and has increased his involvement on numerous private company boards and serves as a director of the public company Masonite (NYSE: DOOR). He also supports numerous charities.
Jay is an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and has earned a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Houston Technology Center. Active as an industry speaker on topics including corporate culture, core values, how to scale a start-up, and disruption, he has more than 100 published articles and writes a column for Inc.com.
He also sings in the same barbershop quartet of which he’s been a part of for nearly 50 years. He lives with his wife, Barbara, in Houston, Texas, and has five children and seven grandchildren whom he proudly refers to as his seven start-ups.
Jay’s book, “Lead from the Core: The 4 Principles for Profit and Prosperity” is a Wall Street Journal Best Seller. It was published on November 30, 2021 and is available for purchase now at all the usual places, including amazon.
Visit Jay and download the first chapter for FREE at www.JaySteinfeld.com.
Co-Founder of Idea Farm Ventures
David has been called the “guru of the DTC movement” and the “man who kick started the direct brand economy.” He is co-founder and President at Idea Farm Ventures (IFV), a permanent capital consumer and retail investment holding company based in New York City.
Prior to IFV, David had a 20-year academic career at the Wharton School where he was a Chaired Professor, an award-winning teacher and researcher, and started the first courses on digital marketing and e-commerce for MBAs and undergraduates. He is a recipient of the Frank M. Bass Outstanding Dissertation Award, POMS Applied Research Challenge First Place Award, WISE Overall Best Paper Award, three John D.C. Little Best Paper Finalist Awards, and two INFORMS Long Term Impact Finalist Awards, among others.
David speaks globally on digital marketing and e-commerce for clients including Alibaba, Google, Haier, Nike, and Ralph Lauren. David joined NetElixir’s 2021 Connecting the Dots conference to speak on The Playbook of DTC.
I am responsible for leading several of our largest cross-functional clients. I specialize in conceptualizing digital marketing strategies to profitably drive new user acquisition and brand awareness. I work closely on defining digital marketing strategies across different channels and leading the product teams in the execution of our client’s digital marketing strategy.
With over 20 years of sales and marketing experience delivering e-commerce outcomes, I am responsible for building synergies between NetElixir and other solution providers that serve the needs of online retailers.
Aaron has led the marketing team at GovX for the past 6 years, where he is responsible for communicating the value of GovX, across all channels, to military, first responders and government employees nationwide. He works closely with all areas of the GovX business, including the Creative, Merchandising and Product teams, to ensure that the GovX member experience is world-class. Before joining GovX, Aaron held senior marketing and management roles at Provide Commerce and the Active Network. He earned his bachelor’s degree at the University of Arizona and his MBA from San Diego State University.
I founded NetElixir with a vision to help retail businesses succeed online. Now, over 18 years later, we continue to drive exceptional results for 400+ retail clients around the world. We empower e-commerce growth through a combination of proprietary technology, strategic growth models, and expert campaign management services.
See Udayan’s Presentations during the event:
Caspar Hardholt, CEO & Founder, Alumio
Caspar is Alumio’s CEO and founder. With over two decades of web and eCommerce experience, Caspar creates an ambitious, respectful and trustful environment for clients, partners and employees to evolve in the world of information technology. Alumio serves renowned eCommerce merchants across the globe and has the ambition to become a global leader in the digital economy with the dedication to solve the various challenges that businesses face when it comes to integrations.
Tauseef Syed, Senior Director of Client Strategy, NetElixir
Tauseef has built his career helping retailers achieve e-commerce success and is a veteran in strategic consulting. He has over a decade’s experience with Fortune 500 and other retail brands across electronics, apparel, and home décor industries. As a Sr. Director of Client Strategy at NetElixir, he helps online retailers drive profitable growth by creating omnichannel strategies that prioritize customer acquisition across the various buying stages.
Lewis Broadnax is the Vice President, Global eCommerce & Digital. As a 20+ year tech industry veteran, Lewis Broadnax is currently responsible for leading digital transformation and eCommerce globally for Sazerac. Previously, Lewis led the creation of the eCommerce and digital practice for RJ Reynolds’s Vapor Company. Lewis’s 17-year career with IBM/Lenovo included P&L and marketing responsibility for the Americas eCommerce organization as well as managing web development teams in Argentina, India and China. Lewis is a frequent speaker at eCommerce and Marketing Technology conferences. He was educated at Duke University and calls both Durham, NC and Louisville, Ky home. His passions are consumer electronics, photography and all things Duke Basketball.
Parag Shah is Vice President, Grocery Division, at Wakefern Food Corporation, the largest, retailer-owned food cooperative in the United States. As leader of the Grocery Division, Mr. Shah is responsible for over $6 billion center store grocery, specialty grocery and dsd portfolio sold under the ShopRite, Price Rite, Fresh Grocer and Dearborn Market banners; in this role, he oversees sourcing, procurement, business strategy, marketing, logistics and innovation.
Parag has day-to-day operational responsibility and implementation of strategic design at the Grocery Division. Parag Shah acts as a Change agent at Wakefern by being involved in several Transformational Projects that are part of Strategic Evolution of Wakefern Foods which include Center Store Re-Invention, Own Brands Expansion, Banner Sustainability and Omni-Channel Expansion
Mr. Shah has spent 20 years at Wakefern, beginning as a Procurement Analyst and assuming roles as a Category Manager and Senior Category Manager before being named Vice President in 2016.
Mr. Shah holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce, Accounting and Finance from the University of Mumbai, a BS in Management from the New Jersey Institute of Technology, and an MBA from Rutgers University School of Business. He also attended the Executive Food Service program at Cornell University.
Suzy Davidkhanian is an eMarketer principal analyst at Insider Intelligence, leading the new retail and ecommerce vertical. Suzy has nearly 15 years experience in retail from store level to buying and planning, and marketing, where most recently she led the consumer insights and market trends team at Macy’s. Suzy earned her MBA at University of Chicago Booth School of Business, and prior to that was an in-house public relations executive for 5 years.
Silas Gossman currently works as a Sr. SEO Account Manager for NetElixir, where he acts as the primary point of contact and a key strategic driver for the organic channel of several e-commerce businesses across various industries. Prior to working directly in SEO, Silas spent several years working in content marketing and as an English Professor. He sees SEO as a great opportunity to draw the user intent (UI) bridge between user and business by offering excellent content and experiences.
Udayan Bose, Founder & CEO of NetElixir, started the company with a vision to help retail businesses succeed online. Nearly 15 years later, NetElixir continues to drive exceptional results for clients through a combination of proprietary technology, strategic growth models, and expert campaign management services.
With Udayan’s determination and persistence, NetElixir has connected 400+ retail clients to their customers around the world. His exclusive focus on the digital retail space has helped NetElixir become the de facto search marketing expert while partnering with industry leaders like UPS, Google, and Bing.
Prior to NetElixir, Udayan was the Director of Business Development at PartyGaming. He regularly lectures MBA classes at Cornell University, Baruch College, and the Indian School of Business in Hyderabad, India.
Udayan has been featured in many of the most prominent online journals, including The New York Times, Forbes, AdWeek, eMarketer, and Media Post, among others.
Farjad has been in the digital marketing industry for over 7 years, with 2.5 of those being a senior sales consultant for top accounts for his agency partners. Prior to Google, he worked at Bloomingdale’s, helping run their Search/Shopping programs. He is a product expert when it comes to Google advertising, and thoroughly enjoys finding strategic solutions for his partners. Outside of work, Farjad is a dad first to his 21-month-old daughter, who will climb any table regardless of height. He is also a very big sports fan, cricket being his first love.
Why do some things catch on? Why do some products, service, and ideas generate more word of mouth than others? This talk reveals the secret science behind word-of-mouth and social transmission. Discover how six basic principles drive all sorts of things to become popular. If you’ve ever wondered why certain stories get shared, brands get more word of mouth, or videos go viral, this talk will explain why, and show how to leverage these ideas to craft contagious content.
Covid-19 has shown that the world can be shut down almost overnight. What’s accepted (and no longer accepted) has changed forever.
The new world we’ve entered is motivated in different ways than previously, and that is being reflected in how new companies are being created, with an even greater emphasis on innovation. Chieh will discuss his thoughts on what it will take for businesses and business leaders to survive and thrive in the new global, post-pandemic landscape.
Over the past century, we have explored the solar system, split the atom, and wired the earth, but somehow, despite all of our technical prowess, we have struggled to understand something far more important: our own cultural differences. Observing the wide variety of cultural permutations, people assumed for centuries that there were as many explanations for these permutations and rifts as there were examples of them. Our research shows that many cultural differences reflect a simple, but often invisible distinction: The strength of social norms. Tight cultures have strong social norms and little tolerance for deviance, while loose cultures have weak social norms and are highly permissive. The tightness or looseness of social norms turns out to be a Rosetta Stone for human groups. It illuminates similar patterns of difference across nations, states, organizations, social class, and households. It is also a global fault line: many of the conflicts we encounter spring from the structural stress of tight-loose tension. By unmasking culture to reveal tight-loose dynamics, we can see fresh patterns in history, illuminate some of today’s most puzzling trends and events, and see our own behavior in a new light. At a time of intense political conflict and rapid social change, this template shows us that there is indeed a method to the madness, and that moderation – not tight or loose extremes – has never been more needed.
During your LXRInsights demo, our experts will walk you through example dashboards so you can see how your customer data is laid out and what insights you can pull to create more effective campaigns.
See how our customer segmentation approach helps identify key behavioral trends and insights that allow you to create personalized, omnichannel experiences for your customers. We segment your customers into high-value, medium-value, and low-value shoppers and show their unique paths to purchase. Our platform collects data on each segment’s touchpoints, the device used, top products, AOV, frequency of purchases, time of purchase, geographic location, and more. Learn more about our customer prediction model, which forecasts the likelihood of repeat customers and churned customers, as well as their customer lifetime value.
Chieh Huang is the CEO and a Co-founder of Boxed, a warehouse-club delivery service that launched in 2013. Eight years later, the company delivers anywhere in the Continental USA, with revenue now in the hundreds of millions.
Prior to Boxed, Chieh earned his J.D. from Fordham University and his Bachelor of Economics degree from The Johns Hopkins University. After law school, he took a position as a corporate attorney at Proskauer where he quickly discovered that a career in law wasn’t for him. He promptly moved into his friend’s attic and helmed a mobile gaming company called Astro Ape which drew the attention of games giant, Zynga. Prior to its eventual IPO, Zynga acquired Astro Ape in 2011 and installed Chieh as the director of their New York office where he led the fastest and most efficient game team within the company. In 2013, seeing an opportunity in mobile commerce, he started Boxed from his parents’ garage. Since then, the company has raised over $300 million dollars, and invested heavily into its technology. Boxed writes its own software, runs its own state of the art fulfillment centers and builds its own automation robotics in-house.
Chieh is an innovator, a serial entrepreneur, and a philanthropist. He personally pays for the college tuition of his full-time employees’ children, recognizing he wouldn’t be where he is today if not for the education he received. Boxed has also taken a stand against the “pink tax” by refusing to charge extra for products specifically marketed to women.
Huang’s personal honors include being named to Bloomberg Businessweek’s 50 people to watch, and to National Retail Federation’s list of People Shaping Retail’s Future. Huang was also chosen as one of Crain’s “40 Under 40” and for Goldman Sachs’ list of “100 Most Intriguing Entrepreneurs.” Finally, Entrepreneur Magazine included Chieh on their list of “The 50 Most Daring Entrepreneurs.”
Huang holds seats on the boards of both Mclaren Racing and the Museum of Chinese in America.
As his career has continued to evolve, Huang has learned much from navigating new job experiences, and now mentors other entrepreneurs also looking to change their professional path. Sometimes that is directly, other times by inspiring them through his TED talks which now have millions of views.
Proof of vaccination is required to attend the in-person X=Experience event. Please present one of the following:
Michele Gelfand is the John H. Scully Professor of Cross-Cultural Management at the Stanford Graduate School of Business School and Professor of Psychology by Courtesy at Stanford. She was formerly a Distinguished University Professor of Psychology at the University of Maryland, College Park. Gelfand uses field, experimental, computational and neuroscience methods to understand the evolution of culture and its multilevel consequences. Her work has been published in outlets such as Science, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Psychological Science, Nature Human behavior, the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Journal of Applied Psychology, Academy of Management Journal, among others. Gelfand is the founding co-editor of the Advances in Culture and Psychology series (Oxford University Press). Her book Rule Makers, Rule Breakers: How Tight and Loose Cultures Wire the World was published by Scribner in 2018. She is the Past President of the International Association for Conflict Management and co-founder of the Society for the Study of Cultural Evolution. She received the 2016 Diener award from SPSP, the 2017 Outstanding International Psychologist Award from the American Psychological Association, the 2019 Outstanding Cultural Psychology Award from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, the 2020 Rubin Theory-to-Practice award from the International Association of Conflict Management, the 2021 Contributions to Society award from the Organizational Behavior Division of the Academy of Management, and the Annaliese Research Award from the Humboldt Foundation. Gelfand was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2019 and the National Academy of Sciences in 2021.
Jonah Berger is a Marketing Professor at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, an internationally bestselling author, and a world‐renowned expert on change, influence, word of mouth, natural language processing, consumer behavior, and how products, ideas, and behaviors catch on. He has published over 50 articles in top-tier academic journals, teaches Wharton’s highest rated online course, and popular accounts of his work often appear in places like The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Harvard Business Review. Over a million copies of his books, Contagious, Invisible Influence, and The Catalyst: How to Change Anyone’s Mind are in print in over 35 countries around the world. Berger often keynotes major conferences and events like SXSW and Cannes Lions, advises various early stage companies, and consults for organizations like Apple, Google, Nike, Amazon, GE, 3M, and The Gates Foundation..
Digital Illusionist Keelan Leyser is a world-renowned virtual magician, British Magical Grand Prix Champion with appearances on TV shows like Penn and Teller Fool Us & Dean Cain’s Masters of Illusion. Keelan sas been personally invited to perform for Prince Charles on more than one occasion and is the entertainer for our Connecting the Dots Virtual Conference break.
Aaron Zagha is currently the CMO at Newton Baby, the direct-to-consumer brand behind the safest baby crib mattress on the market in addition to other top-rated sleep products. He was previously the head of e-commerce for Teleflora’s international operations. Aaron also currently serves on the board of Westside Analytics, an online data-mining firm providing competitive analysis and research to corporate clients in eCommerce, restaurant chains and hedge funds. Prior to Newton and Teleflora, Aaron was a co-founder and COO of Ownza.com, the live shopping site.
Alex leads Tech Lab’s privacy initiatives. Before Tech Lab, Alex was Director, Product Management at Xandr, directly responsible for its privacy and creative product and engineering plans, execution and go to market. During his 7 years at AppNexus (now Xandr) Alex gained a deep understanding of the ad tech industry working globally on projects ranging from a video DSP to ad quality policy and enforcement. Alex holds a masters degree in International Relations focused on European Union Policy Studies, and before AppNexus worked in government and not for profit roles. Alex’s unique experience as a tech leader with international policy chops are a strategic advantage as Tech Lab enables its members to navigate the major disruption impacting digital advertising today.
David has been called the “guru of the DTC movement” and the “man who kick started the direct brand economy.” He is co-founder and President at Idea Farm Ventures (IFV), a permanent capital consumer and retail investment holding company based in New York City. David was an early investor in several iconic new economy brands including Diapers.com (acquired by Amazon for $545m), Jet.com (acquired by Walmart for $3.3b), Bonobos (acquired by Walmart for $310m), Harry’s (private), and Warby Parker (private), among many others.
Prior to IFV, David had a 20-year academic career at the Wharton School where he was a Chaired Professor, an award-winning teacher and researcher, and responsible for starting the first courses on digital marketing and e-commerce for MBAs and undergraduates. He is a recipient of the Frank M. Bass Outstanding Dissertation Award, POMS Applied Research Challenge First Place Award, WISE Overall Best Paper Award, three John D.C. Little Best Paper Finalist Awards, and two INFORMS Long Term Impact Finalist Awards, among others.
David speaks globally on digital marketing and e-commerce for clients including Alibaba, Google, Haier, Nike, and Ralph Lauren. He wrote of Location is (Still) Everything: The Surprising Influence of the Real World on How We Search, Shop, and Sell in the Virtual One, a playbook for how to win in the digital economy. His academic research is published in all major peer-reviewed journals, including Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Econometrics, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, Management Science, Marketing Science, MIT Sloan Management Review and California Management Review.
David holds a Ph.D. (Business) and M.S. (Statistics) from Stanford University as well as a B. Com and M. Com (1st Class Honors) from University of Auckland.
As a 20+ year tech industry veteran, Lewis Broadnax is currently responsible for leading digital transformation and eCommerce globally for Sazerac. Previously, Lewis led the creation of the eCommerce and digital practice for RJ Reynolds’s Vapor Company. Lewis’s 17 year career with IBM/Lenovo included P&L and marketing responsibility for the Americas eCommerce organization as well as managing web development teams in Argentina, India and China. Lewis is a frequent speaker at eCommerce and Marketing Technology conferences. He was educated at Duke University and calls both Durham, NC and Louisville, Ky home. His passions are consumer electronics, photography and all things Duke Basketball.
Natalie Zmuda leads Think with Google, a global platform that delivers Google data and insights to millions of advertisers. She shapes the editorial strategy and shepherds the brand across 21 sites in 12 languages.
Prior to joining Google, Natalie spent nearly fifteen years as a journalist at Advertising Age, Women’s Wear Daily, and Footwear News. As a journalist, she was a frequent guest on CBS This Morning and appeared on a number of other national news outlets, including NBC’s Today, ABC World News, CNBC, CNN, and National Public Radio.
She resides in the New York City area with her husband and two sons.
Jerry (Yoram) Wind joined Wharton in 1967 with a doctorate from Stanford and since 2017 is the Lauder Professor Emeritus and Professor of Marketing. He founded the Wharton Think Tank – The SEI Center for Advanced Studies in Management and directed it for three decades. Among his many innovations at Wharton he led the development of Wharton Executive MBA, the Lauder Institute, the new MBA of 1990 and Wharton School Publishing. He has edited top marketing journals, published over 300 articles, manuscripts and chapters and authored, co-authored or edited 30 books, and received the 4 major marketing awards: Buck Weaver, Parlin, Converse, and AMA/Irwin Distinguished Educator Award. He was inducted to the inaugural group of AMA Fellows. He was one of the original Legends in Marketing, with an 8-volume anthology published by Sage in 2014. He has consulted with over 100 companies and testifies in intellectual property cases. He is a member of the executive committee of SEI, sits on the advisory boards of various companies and nonprofit organizations, including the Time@100. He is a trustee of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Curtis Institute of Music and Grounds for Sculpture. He is a co- founder of the first private, non-profit university in Israel, The Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya. His current research explores marketing-driven business strategy, creativity and innovation; and challenging our mental models. His recent books include Transformation In Times of Crisis (December 2020), Can Art Resolve Conflict? (2018) Beyond Advertising: Creating Value Through All Customer Touchpoints (2016) and The Network Imperative: How to Survive and Grow in the Age of Digital Business Models (2016). He is a 2017 inductee into the Marketing Hall of Fame, the Co-founder of the Purple Project for Democracy and of the Reimagine Education global competition and conference.
Udayan started the company with a vision to help e-commerce businesses succeed online. His exclusive focus on the digital retail space has helped NetElixir become the de facto e-commerce experts while partnering with industry leaders like UPS, Google, and Bing. Now, over 17 years later, NetElixir continues to empower e-commerce growth through empathy, insights, and innovation.
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