Friday, February 28, 2014

Harvard Business School Retail & Luxury Goods Conference Part I

Last weekend, my friends and I attended the Retail & Luxury Goods Conference hosted by the Harvard Business School. The conference began Saturday night at the Met Back Bay on Newbury Street for cocktails and a special presentation from keynote speaker, William McComb, the CEO of Fifth & Pacific Co, which owns Juicy Couture, Jack Spade, and of course my favorite- Kate Spade. 

Retired as of this week from CEO, McComb discussed his pride in building Kate Spade into a retail driven brand built around a dream of creating a lifestyle line to help the twenty-four year old Kate Spade girl/muse live "her most interesting life". McComb also gave away a free Kate Spade Saturday bag for the first one hundred guests to show up, which I was lucky enough to be! 


Day two at the Harvard Business School was packed from 8:30 am to 5:15 pm with so many brilliant, accomplished, and inspiring keynote speakers and panelists sharing their personal journeys, career advice, and business strategies in the world of retail and luxury fashion. 

I was impressed by Julie Bornstein, CMO & CDO of Sephora, and her persistence to get her foot in the door at Sephora. I gained invaluable insight from Philip Behn from Walmart and Julia Straus from BaubleBar about the different strategies retail and luxury brands use in an ever growing e-commerce
omnichannel environment. I laughed at married couple Bertrand and Mathilde Thomas, the founders of French natural skincare line Claudalie, lovingly banter and reminisce about their story of creating a skincare line at ages twenty from their family owned vineyard. 

Stay tuned for part two my experience at HBSRLGConference
when I meet someone very special in the fashion industry!


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