European Forum 2020 ONLINE – Winning in the Post-Pandemic Business Supplies Industry

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    OPI European Forum 2020
    • 18 November 2020
    • 12:00 am - 12:00 am

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    European Forum 2020 ONLINE – Winning in the Post-Pandemic Business Supplies Industry

    12:00 am - 12:00 am
    18 November 2020

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    European Forum 2020 ONLINE – Winning in the Post-Pandemic Business Supplies Industry

    12:00 am - 12:00 am
    18 November 2020

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    An exclusive event for senior executives from the business supplies industry.

    Download the EF2020 Final Agenda 2

    European Forum Virtual Event Users Guide

    Why now?

    Following significant demand adjustments, industry consolidation and new working trends, this is an urgent “must attend” event for companies from across all channels to explore avenues to recover profitable sales and position themselves for a sustainable future.

    What you’ll learn

    The event is designed to help senior industry executives better understand and analyse the changes to our sector. Practical takeaways will enable them to make informed strategic decisions to ensure their businesses succeed in the ‘new normal’.

    The format

    The format will be even more interactive than usual, with few ‘talking heads’ and very little PowerPoint. This will certainly not be a typical webinar! Instead we will focus on Q&A with all our panellists giving you a chance to ask any questions and really interrogate them on their strategies and experience.

    And we’ll host our very popular round tables to ensure you can have intimate in-depth interactions with other delegates and invited experts, discussing the important issues we are all facing.

    There will also be plenty of networking opportunities including informal coffee break areas, one-to-one chat rooms and a speed networking facility. Through the sharing of knowledge, vision, best practice and experience everyone will leave the event with actionable takeaways and a better view of the way forward.

    When?

    To maximise engagement and minimise screen fatigue the Forum will take place over two days on Tuesday 17 and Wednesday 18 November. We will start mid-morning on both days to give you a chance to clear your decks and Inbox, and we’ll finish mid-afternoon so you can finish up ‘in the office’…

    This is an urgent “must attend” event for companies from across all channels and is designed to help senior industry executives better understand and analyse the changes to our sector in a post-COVID world. Practical takeaways will enable them to make informed strategic decisions to ensure their businesses succeed in the ‘new normal’.

     
    We hope you can join us. If you need any additional information, please contact either janet.bell@opi.net or steve.hilleard@opi.net

    Download the EF2020 Final Agenda 2

    Winning in the Post-Pandemic Business Supplies Industry

    An interactive forum for key industry leaders to debate and define the future of the OP sector.

    This is an urgent “must attend” event for companies from across all channels and is designed to help senior industry executives better understand and analyse the changes to our sector in a post-COVID world. Practical takeaways will enable them to make informed strategic decisions to ensure their businesses succeed in the ‘new normal’.
     

    We are still finalising the programme and this page will be updated regularly.

    If you would like to speak at the event, or have any suggestions for the programme, please contact steve.hilleard@opi.net.

    Agenda – all times are UK

     

    Tuesday 17 November

    09.30   Login for Networking

    10.00   Official welcome by Steve Hilleard, CEO, OPI

    10.10   State of the European Business Products Industry: Question Time
    In a series of back-to-back, quick-fire interviews, several industry leaders from key markets and channels in Europe will feed back their varied experiences of operating during the pandemic, and will outline their views on the key industry issues created by the current pandemic.
    Moderator – Steve Hilleard, CEO, OPI
    Interviewees:

    • Nicolas Potier, CEO, Bruneau
    • Michel van Beek, President, Fellowes EMEA & Asia Pacific
    • Aidan McDonough, CEO, Integra and Chairman, BPGI
    • Oliver Klinck, Managing Director, eBay Germany
    • Greg Lienard, CEO, Lyreco
    • Thomas Schwarz, CEO, Mayer-Kuvert-network
    • Michel de Bruin, CEO, Greenspeed International and Chairman, ISSA Europe

    11.30   Networking Break

    11.50   The Future of the Business Supplies Industry: Channel Structures and the Need for Change
    It is widely believed that the pandemic will have a long-lasting impact on our industry and that urgent structural change is required to guarantee its health and survival. This panel of industry thought leaders will shine a spotlight on the many uncomfortable truths that all channel participants must face for the sector to be fit for the future.
    Moderator – Simon Drakeford, CEO, EO Group and Chairman, BOSS Federation
    Panellists:
    • Phil Jones MBE, Managing Director, Brother UK
    • Fabrizio Pistoni, Managing Director, Desktoo Italia
    • Ewoud Bosch, VP International Sales, edding
    • Steve Haworth, CEO, EVO Group of Companies
    • Dolph Westerbos, CEO, Staples Solutions

    12.50   Lunch and Networking

    13.20   Roundtable Session 1 (most sessions repeated the following day)

    • The ‘new normal’: Responding to the many implications this has for our industry
      Hosted by Robert Baldrey, Chief Sales Officer Contract EU7, Office Depot Europe
      If we consider the post-COVID workplace, it is widely expected to be a hybrid model that combines remote work and much less time in the office. The ramifications of this are likely to be considerable, but then perhaps so are the opportunities provided industry participants take the necessary measures now to capitalise on this most contemporary of megatrends. Join the highly-experienced Robert Baldrey in this fascinating discussion about the ‘new normal’ office environment and what it means for every Forum delegate.
    • What exactly is “the industry”?!
      Hosted by Gordon Christiansen, COO, Highlands
      For decades, office products executives have spoken about the “the industry”, a cosy and uniform community of vendors, wholesalers, buying groups, and resellers large and small. In this provocative session, seasoned industry leader Gordon Christiansen will lead a discussion that challenges that notion and encourages everyone to get over the nostalgia and start thinking in much more expansive terms. As “the industry” continues to evolve and encroach upon other sectors, is now the time for a radical rethink of how products – and services – are delivered, and the relationships and collaborations needed to do that? If you’re prepared to confront the norm and think outside the box then this roundtable could be for you.
    • How to make your brand successful on eBay
      (this roundtable will be held on Tuesday only)

      Hosted by Andreas Wielgoss (Director Parts & Accessories, Business & Industrial, Fashion, Sports) and Melina Ruck (Category Lead Business & Industry), eBay GmbH
    • Sustainability and COVID-19: How do they resonate with each other?
      Hosted by Marcel Jacobs, Director, CIRCL8
      Looking past the pandemic, end-users are increasingly interested in sustainable companies and their products. This session will be an open dialogue around three key topics: why and how to market sustainable products; how to benefit from a sustainable value chain; and how to capture value in the circular economy. Marcel will encourage you to share your challenges, learnings and the burning questions that hold you back from taking the next step.
    • Succeeding in the Safety category
      Hosted by Steve Plaistowe, OP Channel Manager, Spectrum Industrial
      As office products resellers continue to broaden their range offering, a focus on safety-oriented products within the Facilities Supplies (FS) arena is a logical next step, particular as this market is growing rapidly. In the UK, for example, the market for safety products has grown 59% in the last eight years and is now worth in excess of £1.2 billion annually. Resellers already confidently sell catering and cleaning within FS, so adding safety-related products to their consumer offering is within easy grasp. In addition, safety is not only good practice but also a legislation compliance requirement, and is typically purchased by the facility/site or building manager who may well already be buying catering and cleaning from an OP reseller. Join this highly topical and timely discussion to find out more about the opportunity in the safety products market for the OP reseller.
    • Outlook 2021: Leveraging the heightened importance of Jan/San
      Hosted by Dianna Steinbach, VP of International Services, ISSA
      In light of the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, what do you need to know to position your Jan/San offerings to increase profits and improve public health? Discuss how changing workplace dynamics may impact cleaning product use and purchases, as well as what purchaser dynamics will result from this unique business environment.
    • The future of sales team management

      Hosted by Simone Hindmarch, Managing Director, Commercial
      It’s expected that the typical post-pandemic office employee will behave very differently to what we’ve been accustomed to. Their place of work will be a hybrid of office and working from home, with an even greater degree of reliance on technology to communicate, especially for non-essential meetings. The salesperson of the future will need to adapt to this new environment while at the same time evolving and acquiring new skills to remain relevant in an environment of increasingly prevalent artificial intelligence and customer service automation. Sales managers too must therefore evolve to effectively manage, train and motivate a salesforce that will travel less yet be even more remote than before. Join this timely session to explore the ‘new normal’ of sales.

    • How to become a post-pandemic ‘modern’ dealer and proven methods for capitalising on the demand for Work From Home (WFH) technology
      Hosted by John George (Managing Director) and Mike George (Marketing & IT Director), JGBM
      John and Mike George at specialist office machines distributor JGBM will lead a discussion around the ‘pandemic-accelerated’ need to function as a ‘modern’ dealer. Key marketing strategies, engaging existing customers as well as the new younger generation of buyers, multiple online channels, direct delivery, value-add and developing your brand locally are just some of the areas that will be addressed. In addition, they will highlight proven strategies for dealers to significantly increase WFH technology sales during the pandemic.

    14.20   Brexit Panel
    With the deadline for the  transition period rapidly approaching, are you ready to trade between the UK and Europe in January? What practical steps are essential to take if you are to be properly prepared? What is the key check list for business supplies? Given that no one knows if there will be a trade deal, how can you know what to prepare for? Will it be as bad as I fear or better than I expect? There is plenty that can be done to ensure you are Brexit-ready and our panel are ready to answer all your questions. Come prepared to create a to do list!
    Moderator – Alex Tatham, Managing Director, Westcoast
    Panellists:
    • Mark Wilkinson, Regional VP & General Manager – UK & Ireland, ACCO Brands
    • Dionne Redpath, Sales Director, Europa Worldwide Group
    • Neil Sawyer, Director of Channel & Partner Alliances, HP UK & Ireland
    • Nick Dacey, Supply Chain Director, Lyreco UK & Ireland

    15.15   Close of day one

    Wednesday 18 November

    09.30   Login for Networking

    10.00   Welcome to Day 2

    10.10   Keynote session: The Great Reset – Disrupt or be Disrupted
    We are witnessing unprecedented disruption in our lives and the way we operate our businesses. COVID-19 is proving to be the greatest disruptor of our time and its impact is huge. Yet, so is the opportunity. Rarely do we get a chance to perform a reset on our businesses. So, the time is now! However, are you ready for a reset? Or are disruptors plotting their inroads into your market?

    Matthijs Rosman, partner at innovative growth consultancy firm RevelX, will take you on a journey, identifying paths of disruption and advising how you can design your strategy going forward, innovating your way out of this crisis.

    You will learn valuable lessons from players in other industries in terms of how they have been able to cope with disruptors. All delegates at the OPI European Forum will receive practical takeaways and tools to ensure they benefit from the great reset.

    Don’t miss this fascinating session from the co-author of leading business bestseller ‘DARE – The Mindset of Successful Innovators in the Digital Age’.
    Speaker: Matthijs Rosman, Partner, RevelX

    10.50   Networking Break

    11.10   Roundtable Session 2

    • Disrupt or be Disrupted
      (this roundtable will be held on Wednesday only)
      Hosted by Matthijs Rosman, Partner, RevelX
      Dare you join this interactive session designed to kick-start your company’s future
    • The future of printing in the hybrid workplace
      (this roundtable will be held on Wednesday only)
      Hosted by Louella Fernandes, Director, Quocirca
      The office print industry was already facing digital disruption prior to the pandemic. Remote working, the acceleration of cloud adoption, the evolving threat landscape and declining office print volumes will continue to impact the traditional print supplier and office products reseller. Can the channel weather the storm by expanding its service and solutions offerings to support the print and digital needs of the hybrid worker?
    • The ‘new normal’: Responding to the many implications this has for our industry
      Hosted by Robert Baldrey, Chief Sales Officer Contract EU7, Office Depot Europe
      If we consider the post-COVID workplace, it is widely expected to be a hybrid model that combines remote work and much less time in the office. The ramifications of this are likely to be considerable, but then perhaps so are the opportunities provided industry participants take the necessary measures now to capitalise on this most contemporary of megatrends. Join the highly-experienced Robert Baldrey in this fascinating discussion about the ‘new normal’ office environment and what it means for every Forum delegate.
    • What exactly is “the industry”?!
      Hosted by Gordon Christiansen, COO, Highlands
      For decades, office products executives have spoken about the “the industry”, a cosy and uniform community of vendors, wholesalers, buying groups, and resellers large and small. In this provocative session, seasoned industry leader Gordon Christiansen will lead a discussion that challenges that notion and encourages everyone to get over the nostalgia and start thinking in much more expansive terms. As “the industry” continues to evolve and encroach upon other sectors, is now the time for a radical rethink of how products – and services – are delivered, and the relationships and collaborations needed to do that? If you’re prepared to confront the norm and think outside the box then this roundtable could be for you.
    • Sustainability and COVID-19: How do they resonate with each other?
      Hosted by Marcel Jacobs, Director, CIRCL8
      Looking past the pandemic, end-users are increasingly interested in sustainable companies and their products. This session will be an open dialogue around three key topics: why and how to market sustainable products; how to benefit from a sustainable value chain; and how to capture value in the circular economy. Marcel will encourage you to share your challenges, learnings and the burning questions that hold you back from taking the next step.
    • Succeeding in the Safety category
      Hosted by Steve Plaistowe, OP Channel Manager, Spectrum Industrial
      As office products resellers continue to broaden their range offering, a focus on safety-oriented products within the Facilities Supplies (FS) arena is a logical next step, particular as this market is growing rapidly. In the UK, for example, the market for safety products has grown 59% in the last eight years and is now worth in excess of £1.2 billion annually. Resellers already confidently sell catering and cleaning within FS, so adding safety-related products to their consumer offering is within easy grasp. In addition, safety is not only good practice but also a legislation compliance requirement, and is typically purchased by the facility/site or building manager who may well already be buying catering and cleaning from an OP reseller. Join this highly topical and timely discussion to find out more about the opportunity in the safety products market for the OP reseller.
    • Outlook 2021: Leveraging the heightened importance of Jan/San
      Hosted by Dianna Steinbach, VP of International Services, ISSA
      In light of the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, what do you need to know to position your Jan/San offerings to increase profits and improve public health? Discuss how changing workplace dynamics may impact cleaning product use and purchases, as well as what purchaser dynamics will result from this unique business environment.
    • The future of sales team management

      Hosted by Simone Hindmarch, Managing Director, Commercial
      It’s expected that the typical post-pandemic office employee will behave very differently to what we’ve been accustomed to. Their place of work will be a hybrid of office and working from home, with an even greater degree of reliance on technology to communicate, especially for non-essential meetings. The salesperson of the future will need to adapt to this new environment while at the same time evolving and acquiring new skills to remain relevant in an environment of increasingly prevalent artificial intelligence and customer service automation. Sales managers too must therefore evolve to effectively manage, train and motivate a salesforce that will travel less yet be even more remote than before. Join this timely session to explore the ‘new normal’ of sales.

      How to become a ‘modern’ dealer and proven methods for capitalising on the demand for Work From Home (WFH) technology
      Hosted by John George (Managing Director) and Mike George (Marketing & IT Director), JGBM
      John and Mike George at specialist office machines distributor JGBM will lead a discussion around the marketing strategies and key components needed to function as a ‘modern’ dealer. Engaging existing customers as well as the new younger generation of buyers, multiple online channels, direct delivery, value-add and developing your brand locally are just some of the areas that will be addressed. In addition, they will highlight proven strategies for dealers to significantly increase WFH technology sales during the pandemic.

    12.10   Transition/break

    12.15   20/21 Vision: A Pathway to Tomorrow’s Business Supplies Industry
    Our final session will summarise what promises to be a hugely varied and very timely programme. With input from the OPI editorial team and many of the key presenters, we’ll be sharing key takeaways and actionable to-do points that will help you position your organisation for success in the post-pandemic business supplies industry.
    Moderator – Steve Hilleard, CEO, OPI
    Panellists:
    Robert Baldrey, Chief Sales Officer Contract EU7, Office Depot Europe
    Andy Braithwaite, News Editor, OPI
    Gordon Christiansen, COO, Highlands
    Simon Drakeford, CEO, EO Group and Chairman, BOSS Federation
    Steve Haworth, CEO, EVO Group of Companies
    Simone Hindmarch, Managing Director, Commercial
    John George, Managing Director, JGBM
    Marcel Jacobs, Director, CIRCL8
    Phil Jones MBE, Managing Director, Brother UK
    Steve Plaistowe, OP Channel Manager, Spectrum Industrial
    Dianna Steinbach, VP of International Services, ISSA

    13.15   Forum closes

    Registration Information

    General Admission ticket £249
    The registration fee includes attendance at all online sessions, access to a recording after the event, and a second complimentary ticket for a colleague. 

    Second delegate
    Once you have booked your place, you will be offered the opportunity to register one colleague for free. 

    **DISCOUNTS AVAILABLE **

    Corporate Membership
    OPI Corporate Members are entitled to free and discounted places at OPI Forums. If you are a Corporate Member please contact janet.bell@opi.net to make your booking. If you are interested in more information about Corporate Membership please contact Chris Exner at chris.exner@opi.net

    VIP, Premium and Digital members

    • VIP members are entitled to a 50% discount on their delegate fee, plus one free additional tickets for a colleague: £125 

    • Premium members are entitled to a 25% discount on their delegate fee, plus one free additional ticket for a colleague: £185

    • Digital members are entitled to a 10% discount on their delegate fee plus one free additional ticket for a colleague: £225

    Independent Dealers
    There is a complimentary registration for Independent dealers with annual sales of less than £20 million. 

    Contact janet.bell@opi.net for a booking code to obtain your special rate.   

    Past attendees at OPI Forums include: 3M, ACCO Brands, Acme United, ADVEO, AIA Corporation, ALSO International, Amax Incorporated, Amazon, AOPD, Avery, Basics Office Products, Baumgartens, Bi-Silque, Bluefish, BPGI, Brassard Fournitures & Ameublement de bureau, Brother, Bruneau, Buffetti, Clover, COLOP, Complete Office Supplies, Coolblue, Corwell, CPD, DC Mayorista, Domtar, Deflecto, ECi, eBay, Egan Reid, EO Group, EOSA, ESG, Essendant, Fellowes, Forms & Supply, Friends Business Source, FSIoffice, FusionPLUS Data, GMi Companies, Gorilla Stationers, Gould Paper, Guernsey, Highlands, HP, HSM, IBM, Independent Suppliers Group, Innovative Office Solutions, Integra, Interaction, International Paper, ISSA, Lyreco, Messe Frankfurt, Midwest Resource Group, Miller’s Office Products, Network Services, Novexco, NPD, Office Basics, Office Brands, Office Choice, Office Club, Office Depot, Office Friendly, Officeworks, OfficeSupply.com, OWiba, PBS Holding, PEG, Pilot Pen, Pinnacle Affiliates, Plaisio, PrintFleet, Printus, Pukka Pads, Really Useful Products, Schoen and Associates, Shoplet, Smead, Socialwise Partners, Source Office & Technology, S.P. Richards, Staples, Superstat, Supplies Network, JM Smucker, The Navigator Company, TOPS, TSRC, Turning Point Strategy, Victor Technology, Warehouse Direct, WW Grainger, Waltons, Wist Office Products, Xerox, Zebra Pen and many more.