Interview with Anil D. Aggarwal, Founder, Shoptalk
There’s a new financial industry event in town. It’s called Shoptalk, and it’s being described as “the first large-scale NextGen Commerce event.” Founded by the same entrepreneurial minds that previously brought us Money20/20, Shoptalk aims to give a platform to the individuals who are reshaping the very concept of how consumers interact in the commercial experience. Mobile ID World president Peter O’Neill recently had the opportunity to speak with Anil D. Aggarwal, founder of Shoptalk, on what the event is all about, who it’s for, and what to expect when attending the show this May in Las Vegas.
Peter O’Neill, President, Mobile ID World (MIDW): Can you describe for our readers your latest conference, which you describe as the tech event for NextGen commerce?
Anil D. Aggarwal, Founder, Shoptalk: So what we did with Money 20/20 for FinTech, and bringing together all of the disruptive start-ups with the established players in the tech and internet companies and investment community, is what we are doing now with Shoptalk for what we are calling NextGen commerce. We describe that as all of the destructive ways in which consumers discover shop and buy. So there are an incredible number, we’ve identified thousands of companies that are creating entirely new ways that consumers discover shop and buy.
Obviously, one of the major macro trends defining that is mobile, and the fact that consumers are connected anytime, anywhere. But it goes beyond that as well, as I think we live in an environment now of widespread and tremendous innovation. And you see it, really, in everything. So it is companies that are revisiting every aspect of how products are created—and experiences and services are created—to how they are curated for consumers, and then how they are consumed. So what Shoptalk will do is, they will bring together a wide range of venture backed companies, or newer disruptive companies, together with established retailers and brands, with tech and internet companies, and the investment community. And we think that is a really important first —to bring that ecosystem together and just like we did with Money 20/20. We don’t ultimately want to just bring the ecosystem together, we want to help create a sense of community across all of those people so that they can all be very productive in all of their interactions on site. So that is really what Shoptalk is all about.
MIDW: Well I can speak from personal experience, that you did that very successfully with Money 20/20. Who should be attending this event?
Shoptalk: There are a few different categories of companies who should attend. I think any start-up that is redefining how consumers discover, shop and buy, and so it could be a direct to consumer blend; it could be a company that is a new enabling technology for commerce; I think it is anyone in retail or a blend that is responsible for innovation and thinking about the future—whether they are in a marketing capacity, omni channel, digital, there are a number of different roles that they could be in in those different organizations, where they could benefit from this interaction; anyone in the investment community that is investing in consumer and retail; and then what I think of as the more traditional tech and internet companies that are enabling commerce today; or platforms like social, for example, with wide spread adoption and are looking at commerce as the new area of modernization.
MIDW: Anil, when I was looking at your website about the conference it struck me that, marketers, advertising agencies, people that support and work with retailers, would also find this conference of high value.
Shoptalk: Definitely! They definitely would. So, I put that into a category of ‘Other’ that is a very diverse range of individuals, that work broadly within this ecosystem, that a show like this would be very useful for.
MIDW: What are some of the main topics that you will be covering at the show?
Shoptalk: How start-ups are disrupting commerce—so, new types of direct to consumer brands that are consolidating supply chains or new consumer brands that are a lot more targeted towards specific trends that you see in the marketplace today. All the way from that to marketing and analytics to some of the more cutting edge topics like the sharing economy, on demand services, the evolution of servicing and logistics, IoT and connected homes and cars, wearables, and virtual reality, 3D printing. So all of the different (of what I would call) trends and technologies that are redefining commerce are going to be represented on the agenda in some way.
MIDW: What an exciting time to be in this industry where so much disruption is occurring and I have ShopTalk on my agenda to attend. Thank you very much for carving out some time to talk to us today. Can you just remind us of the dates and where it is occurring?
Shoptalk: It is May 16-18th in Las Vegas at the Aria which is where we held Money 20/20 for the first 3 years.
MIDW: Thank you very much.
Shoptalk: My pleasure, Peter.