It was a fascinating second and final day of the 2021 OPI European Forum Online on 2 December.
The main event was a high-level keynote talk by Phil Jones, Managing Director of Brother UK, titled The Age of Entropy. Jones articulately presented his views on which priorities business leaders should be focusing on in these challenging times. These can be summarised in three broad categories: growth and resilience, ESG, and the future of work.
Jones gave delegates some great insight into the tools and approaches he uses at Brother, not only in defining the company’s longer-term goals, but also in keeping staff engaged and focused on a shared vision.
It was a tough act to follow, but achieved with aplomb by Bob Boekema and his team from TFE Agency who looked at the potential of online marketplaces beyond Amazon. This is sure to be a key theme in the business products industry in the next few years, with some important developments in the B2B space set to be announced in the coming months.
After a short break for lunch, Robert Baldrey – newly appointed as an Operating Partner at private equity firm Aurelius – led a discussion on the current inflationary environment and pricing strategies. It looks set to be a bumpy road in terms of price normality for another 12 months at least, but is it an opportunity to do business in different ways and not just focus on how to pass on price increases down the line?
The Forum was brought to an end with its traditional round-up panel looking at some of the key takeaways and areas to reflect on. Look out for an in-depth look at these and more from the OPI European Forum Online in the next issue of OPI magazine.