Retail Lunch 2024

Date: Thursday 8th August 2024
Time: 12:00 PM - 03:30 PM
Location: Manchester Marriott Victoria & Albert Hotel, Water Street, , M3 4JQ
Cost: £Members £55 (+VAT), £525 (+VAT) per table of 10 | Non-Members £70 (+VAT), £675 (+VAT) per table of 10
Key Events
Member Event
Retail and Ecommerce

Save the date for pro-manchester's annual retail lunch during which we will look at how some retailers have succeeded against this climate, how others have struggled and what can be learnt from both. We will also look forward to the current year, discussing developing trends in the sector and how these may align with anticipated consumer behaviours.

We will be delving into the intersection of Artificial Intelligence and retail. Explore key themes such as personalized shopping experiences, supply chain optimization, and customer engagement through chatbots. Additionally, we'll discuss the resurgence of demand on the high street post-pandemic, examining how retailers are strategically repositioning themselves. Lastly, gain valuable insights into the evolving employment law landscape and new regulations anticipated in 2024.

About the Speakers:

Bethan Watts UK&I Retailer - Lush

I’ve worked for LUSH for 11 years, starting on the Cardiff shop floor as a 12 hour sales assistant. Over the years I’ve managed stores of all shapes and sizes, managing teams as small as 8 and as large as 200! Most recently, I’ve joined the UK&I Retail team of 11 and am currently working on in store events and parties to ensure every LUSH shop across the Uk & Ireland is the place to celebrate your life event, be it birthday or hen do!

Luke Broster Store Manager - Patagonia

Luke Broster is a Retail Store Manager with Patagonia. With a passion for purposeful business, community building and leading by mission and values. An outdoor professional proud to represent an organisation that prioritises experiences and relationships over transactions.

Ed Barker Head of Intellectual Property and Legal Governance - Manchester United

Ed Barker is Head of Intellectual Property & Legal Governance at Manchester United Football Club.  Ed manages the club’s global intellectual property portfolio, serves as the club’s data protection officer and also has responsibility for a broad range of commercial, legal governance and compliance matters.   Ed joined Manchester United in 2016, prior to which he was Head of Legal at Digital Science and before that spent over a decade in private practice, advising clients across a broad range of industries.

David Mannheim Founder - Made with Intent

David has worked in the digital marketing industry for more than 15 years. He founded, led and successfully exited the UK’s leading conversion optimisation consultancy, User Conversion. He’s worked on over 2,500 experiments with over 100 of the UK’s biggest eCommerce brands. He authored “The Person in Personalisation” after interviewing over 153 experts in the field. Now, he wants to change eCommerce’s established perspective for good. To move retailers along from aggregated, retrospective and result-focused metrics to something more human. Something more segmented, predictive and performance driven. To do this, he’s founded Made With Intent, the customer segmentation platform helping retailers to understand and target how people really buy.

David Allinson Centre Director at Manchester Arndale - CBRE

David is currently Centre Director at Manchester Arndale, a position he has held for 10 years. He is also Chair of CityCo, the management company that represents over 1000 city centre businesses.

His career started in London, working for Bass and involved running bars, hotels and restaurants in the City of London before a move into the aviation sector with BAA at Gatwick, and as part of the development team for Heathrow’s Terminal 5.

The move North was brought about by taking up the position of Head of Commercial Development at Manchester Airports Group, which was responsible from all income from retail and car parks right through to the refuelling of aircraft.

The shopping centre sector move came in 2006 taking up the role of General Manager with Lend Lease for the redevelopment of the Golden Square shopping centre in Warrington, before moving down the M56 to Manchester Arndale.


Louise Stephenson Director - Rowan Executive Search

Louise leads the Private Equity Growth Division for Rowan Executive Search supporting the SME market and specialising in placing C-Suite roles across the UK. Louise has over 20 years executive search experience, is qualified to CIPD level 5, personally sat at SMT level, managed a number of large sales teams and has an exceptional knowledge of the Northwest marketplace. She came out of the corporate world over 7 years ago and joined Rowan – a PE-backed, fast-paced, entrepreneur led business – to enable the next stage of her journey balancing senior leadership with her role as a mum. Louise also hosts a quarterly Empowering Women in Business to orchestrate more opportunities for females at board level as well as tackling the wider DE&I agenda.

Carl Morris Co-Founder & CEO - Cress

Carl Morris is an accomplished business executive with over 20 years of experience in creating brands, driving growth and operational excellence in the retail sector. As the Co-Founder and CEO of Cress, he has been pivotal in redefining e-commerce for parents with a focus on affordability and community building. Carl’s leadership has steered Cress to become an innovative new online marketplace, supporting parents and fostering a culture of sustainable shopping.

Before Cress, Carl has built an extremely profitable hospitality business and held significant roles at major retail organisations, where he honed his skills in strategic planning, team building, and business growth. His expertise extends to crafting partnerships, marketing and scaling business. Carl is a visionary leader who is passionate about creating positive change and empowering through innovative solutions

Jennifer Smith Partner - Forbes Solicitors

Jennifer is a Partner with considerable experience and expertise, encompassing both contentious and non-contentious work, spanning the lifetime of the employment relationship. With extensive advocacy experience in the Tribunals, Jennifer has developed a strong reputation as a litigator and tactician. Jennifer was included in the Legal 500 in 2018, 2019, 2020 and most recently in 2021, listing Jennifer as a “Next Generation Partner” and referring to her as a “name to note”. The publication has described Jennifer as “very thorough and totally committed to her clients”.

Jennifer has particular expertise in the recruitment industry, as well as the charity, hospitality and digital and ecommerce sectors. Clients recognise Jennifer’s excellent legal skillset and commitment to them and consistently return to her for advice. Jennifer’s personal approach, commercial awareness and excellent client care skills have previously resulted in awards, including Jennifer winning the Business Insider Lawyer of the Year. Jennifer regularly hosts webinars and training events and frequently appears in print media, as an expert in the field of employment law.

Lauren Somers Chartered UK Trade Mark And Designs Attorney - HGF Limited

Lauren Somers is a UK Chartered Trade Mark and Designs Attorney. She helps businesses from multinationals to start-ups to identify, protect and enforce their intellectual property rights. Lauren is co-chair of the pro-manchester Retail & E-commence committee and has particular experience and expertise advising retailers.

Interested In The Event?

If you’re interested in attending, you can book online here.

For any further enquires about this event, contact [email protected]

Charity Partner