The Retail Analytics Council and Platt Retail Institute present the second annual Retail Robotics and AI Conference, which will take place on April 11-12, 2019, at the Hilton Orrington Hotel in Evanston, IL (next to the Northwestern University campus). The Conference will focus on implementing and executing retail AI strategies, as well as exploring emerging trends in retail robotics. Presentations by leading academics and retailers include:

  • U.S.-China Retailers, Consumer Trends, and AI
  • Observations on the State of Retail Technology and AI
  • How to Implement a Retail Analytics Function
  • Advanced Analytics in Customer-Centric Strategies
  • AI Use Cases
  • Emerging AI Tech
  • Data Privacy
  • Robots in Retail Competition Presentations
  • Robust Perception for Robotics Systems
  • Intelligent Automation
  • Current Retail Robot Applications and Benefits
  • Future Retail Robot Applications

Attendance is open to retailers by invitation only and is limited to 150 participants. This includes Retail Analytics Council Advisory Board members, C-level executives, academics, and leaders in the industry. The format is educational, knowledge advancement-based, with many opportunities to interact with the presenters and attendees. The Conference offers a unique opportunity to participate in the development of the retail industry’s research and technology through interaction with academics and professionals by means of expert panel discussions.

 

ROBOTS IN RETAIL COMPETITION

New to the Conference in 2019.

Interested firms are invited to apply for consideration. Judges will select those firms that offer significant, breakthrough use of robotics to create unique, relevant, and value-creating solutions for retailers. Winners will be invited to present at the Conference to the senior-level retailer audience of 150 individuals.

View/download Instruction sheet

REQUEST AN INVITATION 

RETAIL ATTENDEES (among others)

  • American Eagle Outfitters
  • Canadian Tire
  • Claire’s
  • Finish Line
  • GameStop

  • Giant Eagle
  • Google
  • Hong Kong Shanghai Bank
  • Kroger
  • Macy’s
  • Sears
  • Tractor Supply
  • Ulta Beauty

EVENT SPEAKERS

DR. MARTIN BLOCK

Executive Director, Retail Analytics Council, and Professor, Northwestern University

JEFF BURNSTEIN

President, Association for Advancing Automation

CARL CERESOLI

Chief Technology Officer, Pacers Sports and Entertainment

NITIN CHATURVEDI

Global Managing Dir., Retail Sales & Operations, Google

CARI COVENT

VP, Artificial Intelligence and Intelligent Automation, Canadian Tire Corporation

JEFF DONALDSON

CEO, Intriosity, and former CIO, GameStop

MARTIAL HEBERT

Director, Robotics Institute and Professor, Carnegie Mellon University

SRINI KANDALA

Head of Local Commerce, Innovation, and the Deep Learning Center, Sears Holdings Corporation

ANDRA KEAY

Managing Director and Founder, Silicon Valley Robotics

SEAN MACCARTHY

Executive Director of Global Analytics and Store Segmentation, Claire’s

ROBERT MILLS

EVP, Chief Technology, Digital Commerce and Strategy Officer, Tractor Supply

DR. JOHN OSTREM

CEO and Co-Founder, AvatarMind

STEVEN KEITH PLATT

Research Director, Retail Analytics Council and Director and Research Fellow, Platt Retail Institute

DIANE RANDOLPH

Chief Information Officer, ULTA Beauty

WESLEY RHODES

VP of Technology Transformation, Kroger Corporation

TIM ROWLAND

CEO, Badger Technologies

MATTHEW SEITZ

Head of Retail Insights and Analytics, Google

STEVEN SHEINER

Vice President, Brain Corporation

CHRIS STEPHENS

VP Data Technology, American Eagle Outfitters

AJ SUTERA

EVP, Chief Information and Technology Office, Finish Line

CHARLOTTE TSOU

Sr. VP, Regional Head of Analytics & CRM, HSBC

DAQING ZHAO

Director of Advanced Analytics, Macy's

SPONSORS

DIAMOND SPONSOR
PLATINUM SPONSOR
CONFERENCE RECEPTION SPONSOR

AGENDA

8:00-9:00am

Breakfast & Registration

9:00-9:15am

Introduction to the Conference

Dr. Frank Mulhern, Director, Retail Analytics Council, Associate Dean and Professor, Northwestern University

9:15-10:30am

U.S.-China Retailers, Consumer Trends, and AI

Moderator: Charlotte Tsou, Sr. VP, Regional Head of Analytics & CRM, HSBC

Dr. Martin Block, Executive Director, Retail Analytics Council, and Professor, Northwestern University

10:30-10:45am

Break

10:45am-12:00pm

Observations on the State of Retail Technology and AI

  1. Diane Randolph, Chief Information Officer, Ulta Beauty
  2. Wesley Rhodes, COO Sunrise Technologies and VP Technology Transformation, Kroger
  3. AJ Sutera, EVP, Chief Information and Technology Office, Finish Line
 

In this presentation, leading retailers will discuss trends in retail technology adoption. A brief presentation by each speaker will be followed by a detailed discussion of emerging tech trends, challenges, adoption rates, and the future direction of retail tech.

12:00-1:00pm

Lunch

1:00-1:45pm

How to Implement a Retail Analytics Function

Chris Stephens, VP Data Technology, American Eagle Outfitters

1:45-2:30pm

Advanced Analytics in Customer-Centric Strategies

Daqing Zhao, Director of Advanced Analytics, Macy’s

 

Macy's Advanced Analytics use data to build powerful tools to improve customer communications and understand customer retention via segmentation and life-time value analysis and modeling. We take a portfolio approach of various data sources, and modeling algorithms, using extensive test and experimentation to achieve Big Data AI solutions with sustaining benefits. There are many organizational implications, as well as data, analytics and modeling challenges. This session will discuss Macy’s experience in these areas.

2:30-3:00pm

Break

3:00-4:00pm

AI Use Cases

  1. Sean MacCarthy, Executive Director of Global Analytics and Store Segmentation, Claire’s
  2. Rob Mills – EVP, Chief Technology, Digital Commerce and Strategy Officer, Tractor Supply
  3. Matthew Seitz, Head of Retail Insights and Analytics, Google
 

Our retail panel will present three AI Use Cases. These include: 1. Influencing the Customer on the Path to Purchase; 2. Leveraging AI to Impact Store and Merchandising Decisions; and 3.  Improving Customer Experience through BOPIS (by on line; pick up in store). Issues identified, data applied, models built and deployed will be addressed, as well as discoveries made along the way.

4:00-5:00pm

Emerging AI Tech

Srini Kandala, Head of Local Commerce, Innovation, and the Deep Learning Center, Sears Holdings Corporation

5:00-5:15pm

Summary

Dr. Don E. Schultz, Director, Retail Analytics Council, and Professor (Emeritus-in-Service), Northwestern University

5:30-6:30pm

RAC Lab and Campus Tour

7:00-10:00pm

Conference Reception

8:00-9:00am

Breakfast

9:00-9:15am

Introduction to Day Two

Dr. Vijay Viswanathan, Director, Retail Analytics Council, IMC Department Chair and Associate Professor, Northwestern University

9:15-10:30am

Data Privacy

 

Leading privacy and security experts address current challenges for retailers related to AI, facial recognition, biometrics, employee monitoring and augmented reality with practical, “no regrets” approaches to managing in a rapidly changing compliance environment.

10:30-11:45am

Current Retail Robot Applications and Benefits

  1. Rich Carryer, SVP Information Technology and CIO, Giant Eagle
  2. Tim Rowland, CEO, Badger Technologies
  3. Steven Sheiner, Vice President, Brain Corporation
 

Adoption by retailers of robots is slowly increasing, as they have the potential to impact store operations. In this session, robotic experts and retailers will share pragmatic advice on how robots are being deployed and the benefits that are being realized. Specific use cases will be explored, including shelf-audit, inspection, and maintenance. In addition, the issue of data application will be explored.

11:45am-1:00pm

Lunch

1:00-2:00pm

Robots in Retail Competition

Moderator: Jeff Donaldson, CEO, Intriosity, and former CIO, GameStop

 

Retailers are evaluating the potential of robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) to drive significant advancements in consumer experience, product and service design, labor productivity, core retail capabilities, and workforce upskilling. For successful implementation of digital transformation strategies, the ability to source innovative, often disruptive, solutions from robotics companies that deliver value in one or more of these areas is increasingly critical. In this session, three finalists from the first-ever RAC Retail Robotics Competition will present their solutions, and delineate the unique benefits that consumers and retailers can derive from them.

2:00-2:45pm

Robust Perception for Robotics Systems

Martial Hebert, Director, Robotics Institute and Professor, Carnegie Mellon University

 

In his presentation, Dr. Hebert will discuss robotic introspection (self-awareness of performance), rapid learning and adaptation, anytime algorithms for deep learning, multiple hypothesis generation, etc. Examples from actual systems will be presented.

2:45-3:00pm

Break

3:00-3:45pm

Intelligent Robotic Process Automation

Cari Covent, VP, Artificial Intelligence and Intelligent Automation, Canadian Tire Corporation

3:45-4:45pm

Future Retail Robot Applications

Moderator: Christopher Moehle, Managing Director, The Robotics Hub

  1. Jeff Burnstein, President, The Association for Advancing Automation
  2. Andra Keay, Managing Director and Founder, Silicon Valley Robotics
  3. John S. Ostrem, Ph.D., CEO, AvatarMind
 

New applications for robots are emerging, but which will have commercial success? In this session, an expert panel will be presented with three robot concepts. Each will share their view on the feasibility to produce such a robot, the likely benefits to be realized, and the potential for  adoption. Applications to be explored include inventory accuracy via RFID, shelf-stocking, and merchandise detection (of product freshness and for traceability).

4:45-5:00pm

Conference Concluding Remarks

Dr. Don E. Schultz, Director, Retail Analytics Council, and Professor (Emeritus-in-Service), Northwestern University

Observations on the State of Retail Technology and AI
Thursday, April 11 — 10:45am-12:00pm

In this presentation, leading retailers will discuss trends in retail technology adoption. A brief presentation by each speaker will be followed by a detailed discussion of emerging tech trends, challenges, adoption rates, and the future direction of retail tech.

 

Advanced Analytics in Customer-Centric Strategies
Thursday, April 11 — 1:45-2:30pm

Macy’s Advanced Analytics use data to build powerful tools to improve customer communications and understand customer retention via segmentation and life-time value analysis and modeling. We take a portfolio approach of various data sources, and modeling algorithms, using extensive test and experimentation to achieve Big Data AI solutions with sustaining benefits. There are many organizational implications, as well as data, analytics and modeling challenges. This session will discuss Macy’s experience in these areas.

 

AI Use Cases
Thursday, April 11 — 3:00-4:00pm

Our retail panel will present three AI Use Cases. These include: 1. Influencing the Customer on the Path to Purchase; 2. Leveraging AI to Impact Store and Merchandising Decisions; and 3. Improving Customer Experience through BOPIS (buy online; pick up in store). Issues identified, data applied, models built and deployed will be addressed, as well as discoveries made along the way.

 

Data Privacy
Friday, April 12 — 9:15-10:30am

Leading privacy and security experts address current challenges for retailers related to AI, facial recognition, biometrics, employee monitoring and augmented reality with practical, “no regrets” approaches to managing in a rapidly changing compliance environment.

 

Current Retail Robot Applications and Benefits
Friday, April 12 — 10:30-11:45am

Adoption by retailers of robots is slowly increasing, as they have the potential to impact store operations. In this session, robotic experts and retailers will share pragmatic advice on how robots are being deployed and the benefits that are being realized. Specific use cases will be explored, including shelf-audit, inspection, and maintenance. In addition, the issue of data application will be explored.

 

Robots in Retail Competition
Friday, April 12 — 1:00-2:00pm

Retailers are evaluating the potential of robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) to drive significant advancements in consumer experience, product and service design, labor productivity, core retail capabilities, and workforce upskilling. For successful implementation of digital transformation strategies, the ability to source innovative, often disruptive, solutions from robotics companies that deliver value in one or more of these areas is increasingly critical. In this session, three finalists from the first-ever RAC Retail Robotics Competition will present their solutions, and delineate the unique benefits that consumers and retailers can derive from them.

 

Robust Perception for Robotics Systems
Friday, April 12 — 2:00-2:45pm

In his presentation, Dr. Hebert will discuss robotic introspection (self-awareness of performance), rapid learning and adaptation, anytime algorithms for deep learning, multiple hypothesis generation, etc. Examples from actual systems will be presented.

 

Future Retail Robot Applications
Friday, April 12 — 3:45-4:45pm

New applications for robots are emerging, but which will have commercial success? In this session, an expert panel will be presented with three robot concepts. Each will share their view on the feasibility to produce such a robot, the likely benefits to be realized, and the potential for adoption. Applications to be explored include inventory accuracy via RFID, shelf-stocking, and merchandise detection (of product freshness and for traceability).

+ Thursday, April 11

8:00-9:00am

Breakfast & Registration

9:00-9:15am

Introduction to the Conference

Dr. Frank Mulhern, Director, Retail Analytics Council, Associate Dean and Professor, Northwestern University

9:15-10:30am

U.S.-China Retailers, Consumer Trends, and AI

Moderator: Charlotte Tsou, Sr. VP, Regional Head of Analytics & CRM, HSBC

Dr. Martin Block, Executive Director, Retail Analytics Council, and Professor, Northwestern University

10:30-10:45am

Break

10:45am-12:00pm

Observations on the State of Retail Technology and AI

  1. Diane Randolph, Chief Information Officer, Ulta Beauty
  2. Wesley Rhodes, COO Sunrise Technologies and VP Technology Transformation, Kroger
  3. AJ Sutera, EVP, Chief Information and Technology Office, Finish Line
 

In this presentation, leading retailers will discuss trends in retail technology adoption. A brief presentation by each speaker will be followed by a detailed discussion of emerging tech trends, challenges, adoption rates, and the future direction of retail tech.

12:00-1:00pm

Lunch

1:00-1:45pm

How to Implement a Retail Analytics Function

Chris Stephens, VP Data Technology, American Eagle Outfitters

1:45-2:30pm

Advanced Analytics in Customer-Centric Strategies

Daqing Zhao, Director of Advanced Analytics, Macy’s

 

Macy's Advanced Analytics use data to build powerful tools to improve customer communications and understand customer retention via segmentation and life-time value analysis and modeling. We take a portfolio approach of various data sources, and modeling algorithms, using extensive test and experimentation to achieve Big Data AI solutions with sustaining benefits. There are many organizational implications, as well as data, analytics and modeling challenges. This session will discuss Macy’s experience in these areas.

2:30-3:00pm

Break

3:00-4:00pm

AI Use Cases

  1. Sean MacCarthy, Executive Director of Global Analytics and Store Segmentation, Claire’s
  2. Rob Mills – EVP, Chief Technology, Digital Commerce and Strategy Officer, Tractor Supply
  3. Matthew Seitz, Head of Retail Insights and Analytics, Google
 

Our retail panel will present three AI Use Cases. These include: 1. Influencing the Customer on the Path to Purchase; 2. Leveraging AI to Impact Store and Merchandising Decisions; and 3.  Improving Customer Experience through BOPIS (by on line; pick up in store). Issues identified, data applied, models built and deployed will be addressed, as well as discoveries made along the way.

4:00-5:00pm

Emerging AI Tech

Srini Kandala, Head of Local Commerce, Innovation, and the Deep Learning Center, Sears Holdings Corporation

5:00-5:15pm

Summary

Dr. Don E. Schultz, Director, Retail Analytics Council, and Professor (Emeritus-in-Service), Northwestern University

5:30-6:30pm

RAC Lab and Campus Tour

7:00-10:00pm

Conference Reception

+ Friday, April 12

8:00-9:00am

Breakfast

9:00-9:15am

Introduction to Day Two

Dr. Vijay Viswanathan, Director, Retail Analytics Council, IMC Department Chair and Associate Professor, Northwestern University

9:15-10:30am

Data Privacy

 

Leading privacy and security experts address current challenges for retailers related to AI, facial recognition, biometrics, employee monitoring and augmented reality with practical, “no regrets” approaches to managing in a rapidly changing compliance environment.

10:30-11:45am

Current Retail Robot Applications and Benefits

  1. Rich Carryer, SVP Information Technology and CIO, Giant Eagle
  2. Tim Rowland, CEO, Badger Technologies
  3. Steven Sheiner, Vice President, Brain Corporation
 

Adoption by retailers of robots is slowly increasing, as they have the potential to impact store operations. In this session, robotic experts and retailers will share pragmatic advice on how robots are being deployed and the benefits that are being realized. Specific use cases will be explored, including shelf-audit, inspection, and maintenance. In addition, the issue of data application will be explored.

11:45am-1:00pm

Lunch

1:00-2:00pm

Robots in Retail Competition

Moderator: Jeff Donaldson, CEO, Intriosity, and former CIO, GameStop

 

Retailers are evaluating the potential of robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) to drive significant advancements in consumer experience, product and service design, labor productivity, core retail capabilities, and workforce upskilling. For successful implementation of digital transformation strategies, the ability to source innovative, often disruptive, solutions from robotics companies that deliver value in one or more of these areas is increasingly critical. In this session, three finalists from the first-ever RAC Retail Robotics Competition will present their solutions, and delineate the unique benefits that consumers and retailers can derive from them.

2:00-2:45pm

Robust Perception for Robotics Systems

Martial Hebert, Director, Robotics Institute and Professor, Carnegie Mellon University

 

In his presentation, Dr. Hebert will discuss robotic introspection (self-awareness of performance), rapid learning and adaptation, anytime algorithms for deep learning, multiple hypothesis generation, etc. Examples from actual systems will be presented.

2:45-3:00pm

Break

3:00-3:45pm

Intelligent Robotic Process Automation

Cari Covent, VP, Artificial Intelligence and Intelligent Automation, Canadian Tire Corporation

3:45-4:45pm

Future Retail Robot Applications

Moderator: Christopher Moehle, Managing Director, The Robotics Hub

  1. Jeff Burnstein, President, The Association for Advancing Automation
  2. Andra Keay, Managing Director and Founder, Silicon Valley Robotics
  3. John S. Ostrem, Ph.D., CEO, AvatarMind
 

New applications for robots are emerging, but which will have commercial success? In this session, an expert panel will be presented with three robot concepts. Each will share their view on the feasibility to produce such a robot, the likely benefits to be realized, and the potential for  adoption. Applications to be explored include inventory accuracy via RFID, shelf-stocking, and merchandise detection (of product freshness and for traceability).

4:45-5:00pm

Conference Concluding Remarks

Dr. Don E. Schultz, Director, Retail Analytics Council, and Professor (Emeritus-in-Service), Northwestern University

+ Session Descriptions

Observations on the State of Retail Technology and AI
Thursday, April 11 — 10:45am-12:00pm

In this presentation, leading retailers will discuss trends in retail technology adoption. A brief presentation by each speaker will be followed by a detailed discussion of emerging tech trends, challenges, adoption rates, and the future direction of retail tech.

 

Advanced Analytics in Customer-Centric Strategies
Thursday, April 11 — 1:45-2:30pm

Macy’s Advanced Analytics use data to build powerful tools to improve customer communications and understand customer retention via segmentation and life-time value analysis and modeling. We take a portfolio approach of various data sources, and modeling algorithms, using extensive test and experimentation to achieve Big Data AI solutions with sustaining benefits. There are many organizational implications, as well as data, analytics and modeling challenges. This session will discuss Macy’s experience in these areas.

 

AI Use Cases
Thursday, April 11 — 3:00-4:00pm

Our retail panel will present three AI Use Cases. These include: 1. Influencing the Customer on the Path to Purchase; 2. Leveraging AI to Impact Store and Merchandising Decisions; and 3. Improving Customer Experience through BOPIS (buy online; pick up in store). Issues identified, data applied, models built and deployed will be addressed, as well as discoveries made along the way.

 

Data Privacy
Friday, April 12 — 9:15-10:30am

Leading privacy and security experts address current challenges for retailers related to AI, facial recognition, biometrics, employee monitoring and augmented reality with practical, “no regrets” approaches to managing in a rapidly changing compliance environment.

 

Current Retail Robot Applications and Benefits
Friday, April 12 — 10:30-11:45am

Adoption by retailers of robots is slowly increasing, as they have the potential to impact store operations. In this session, robotic experts and retailers will share pragmatic advice on how robots are being deployed and the benefits that are being realized. Specific use cases will be explored, including shelf-audit, inspection, and maintenance. In addition, the issue of data application will be explored.

 

Robots in Retail Competition
Friday, April 12 — 1:00-2:00pm

Retailers are evaluating the potential of robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) to drive significant advancements in consumer experience, product and service design, labor productivity, core retail capabilities, and workforce upskilling. For successful implementation of digital transformation strategies, the ability to source innovative, often disruptive, solutions from robotics companies that deliver value in one or more of these areas is increasingly critical. In this session, three finalists from the first-ever RAC Retail Robotics Competition will present their solutions, and delineate the unique benefits that consumers and retailers can derive from them.

 

Robust Perception for Robotics Systems
Friday, April 12 — 2:00-2:45pm

In his presentation, Dr. Hebert will discuss robotic introspection (self-awareness of performance), rapid learning and adaptation, anytime algorithms for deep learning, multiple hypothesis generation, etc. Examples from actual systems will be presented.

 

Future Retail Robot Applications
Friday, April 12 — 3:45-4:45pm

New applications for robots are emerging, but which will have commercial success? In this session, an expert panel will be presented with three robot concepts. Each will share their view on the feasibility to produce such a robot, the likely benefits to be realized, and the potential for adoption. Applications to be explored include inventory accuracy via RFID, shelf-stocking, and merchandise detection (of product freshness and for traceability).