Retail Innovation Lounge Returns to Austin on March 10

March 7, 2018  | By Greg Earl

As SXSW approaches, Austin is preparing to descend into ten days of madness brought on by the four main pillars of SXSW: Interactive, Film, Music and Traffic. Amongst the hundreds of sessions happening next week, a stand-out event in retail will take place on Saturday, March 10, as some of retail’s greatest minds and thought leaders converge at the 2018 Retail Innovation Lounge.

The event, taking place at Max’s Wine Dive in downtown Austin, will bring together leading retail and brand executives and technology innovators for a day of keynotes, panels and networking. Sponsors of this year’s Retail Innovation Lounge include: Strings, Hershey Innovation, goPuff, Softvision Digital Innovation, and IDL Worldwide.

What is the Retail Innovation Lounge? 

Retail Innovation Lounge in Dallas, TX (2016)

The Retail Innovation Lounge is a global, by-invite-only executive leadership series for retail innovators, brands, investors and operating professionals focused on the future of retail in a private, peer-based environment. It was founded by Anne Marie Stephen, the founder of kwolia, a strategic advisory for emerging technologies applied in retail connecting the physical and digital worlds.

Saturday’s event will bring out the best within the retail innovation ecosystem to pitch their ideas, solutions and products to leading industry investors, media outlets and partners.

What to Expect at the Lounge

The Retail Innovation Lounge will feature a meet and greet with B. Bonin Bough, the marketing executive behind global campaigns including the first ever 3D printed food product, a customizable, real-time printed Oreo at SXSW 2014, and a chat with Jay Samit, serial disruptor and best-selling author of “Disrupt You.” As well, we are excited to announce that Edward Balassanian, founder of our newest client Strings, will give a fireside chat with Anne Marie about the exciting changes he sees for the social media landscape.

Attendees will also get a sneak peek at a new VR experience from Hershey and goPuff in a unique immersive activation, as well as a Podcast Studio with Mouth Media Network and multiple live tech and solution demonstrations throughout the day. Session themes will cover blockchain, social media, cryptocurrency, storytelling and experience creation, innovation in enterprise and brand environments and more.

Retail Innovation Lounge will also be giving out swag, hosting exclusive experiences including book signings, an evening social mixer, a future of retail documentary taping, and more. Click here to see the full line-up of speakers and technology activations.

The Best and Brightest Minds in Retail

Featured speakers for the event include:

  • Bonin Bough – Host, CNBC Cleveland Hustles
  • Jay Samit – Best-selling author of “Disrupt You” and an Independent Vice Chair for Deloitte
  • Veronica McGregor – News and Social Media Manager, NASA Jet Propulsion Lab
  • Dennis McGrath – VP Innovation, Tryer Center, Starbucks

Additionally, industry disruptors from the following organizations will be on hand to share their expertise:

  • Kroger Innovation
  • Lowe’s Labs Innovation (former)
  • Lab1886 USA, Mercedes-Benz Corporate Incubator
  • Softvision Digital Innovation
  • Strings Media Inc.
  • The Hershey Company Insights and Retail Evolution
  • Moet Hennessy Innovation
  • Store No. 8 (Innovation Hub, Walmart)
  • Walmart Digital Acceleration
  • Plug and Play – Silicon Valley Accelerator
  • Treehouse (Eco-friendly home upgrade company)
  • Carnegie Mellon Entertainment and Tech Center
  • Mammoth Film Festival, Founders

Interested in Attending?

The invite-only event will take place at Max’s Wine Dive at 207 San Jacinto Blvd from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with happy hour from 5 to 7 p.m. If you’re interested in attending, RSVP here and use access code “KGRIL”.

Our team will be posting content to the String app, so be sure to follow along here on your mobile device for live coverage of the event and post your own moments while you join us. We hope to see you there!