Garden Retail Summit Agenda

Current Agenda*

*Please note that timings are subject to change. 

09:50   Registration

10:25   Chair's Welcome and Opening Remarks
                 Kate Lowe, Editor, Horticulture Week

10:30   Keynote: The Dobbies' vision
Hear Chief Executive John Cleland outline his vision for Dobbies, as well as his views on the opportunities and challenges facing the sector.
John Cleland, CEO, Dobbies

11:10    Keynote: Going for growth 2017
Garden Retail Summit favourite, mdj2’s Andy Newman, will unlock the drivers behind a wave of investment, identify key emerging themes and trends, plus outline the opportunities it brings for all players in the garden retail industry.
Andy Newman, Director, Mdj2 Associates

11:50    Coffee break

12:00    Panel discussion: Independent garden centres going for growth
In this panel session garden centre executives from the independent sector to share the key objectives and learnings from their latest business developments.
Panel: (Chair) Matt Appleby, Deputy Editor, Horticulture Week
                             Mark Farnsworth, Owner, Tong Garden Centre
                             Tim Mason, Project Manager, Mappleborough Garden Centre
                             James Debbage, Owner, Green Pastures

12:45    Armchair interview: Q&A with multi-award winning garden centre owner Paul Cooling
Paul Cooling, Chairman, Coolings

13:15    Lunch

14:00    Panel discussion: Preparing for Brexit
Garden industry leaders will examine how industry executives can manage the potential impact on their businesses of price increases in imported goods, changes in economic conditions, pressures on key supply chains and more. 
They will debate how to: 
  1. Manage pricing strategies given the declining value of the pound and increase in the cost of importing goods 
  2. Adapt to expected changes in economic conditions and shifts in consumer confidence 
  3. Prepare for potential import duty and supply chain shifts
Panel: (Chair) Andy Saunders, Deputy Editor, Management Today
                             Martin Breddy, Managing Director, Squires
                             Andy Bunker, Director, Alton Garden Centre
                            Clive Daley, Director, mdj2
                            Lolly Lee, Director, Briers

15:00    Panel Discussion: What do retailers really want from UK growers?
With the cost of importing plants increasing, opting for a higher percentage of British-grown stock is becoming even more attractive. But what do garden retailers actually want most from their British plant suppliers? And what do British retail plant suppliers need to do to grasp this great opportunity for growth and import substitution?
Panel: (Chair) Matt Appleby, Deputy Editor, Horticulture Week
                              Steve Guy, Mechandising Director, Dobbies
                              Carol Paris, Chief Executive, HTA
                              Alan Roper, Managing Director, Blue Diamond

15:40    End of day

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