Market Intelligence marks a new era in retail

Nomzamo Radebe, President of the South African Council of Shopping Centres and CEO of JHI.

Today’s retail environment is increasingly characterized by savvy, engaged shoppers and driven by new and evolving technologies.

“When the stakes are high, competition is fierce and change is rapid; market intelligence becomes crucial for success.” This was the word from Nomzamo Radebe, President of the South African Council of Shopping Centres (SACSC) and CEO of JHI, speaking at the sixth annual SACSC research conference in Sandton recently.

The one-day conference offered up a robust line-up of new ideas, insights, cutting-edge solutions and best practice for the retail and property industry. It was sponsored by Broll Property Group.

Getting to know the consumer, identifying new trends, and harnessing the value of technology are among the top challenges for today’s innovative retailers and shopping centres.

Trends in technology and consumer patterns will shape retail in new and interesting ways well into the future as the lines between physical and digital retail continue to blur. “In all areas of retail, change is the new normal,” notes Radebe.

As innovation and adaptability become ever more critical, and omnichannel retail becomes omnipresent, Radebe believes that prospering in this new era of retail requires shopping centres and retailers to know their shoppers better than ever before.

“Technology-driven change in the retail environment is compelling us to become more flexible and open to new retail concepts, ways of working, store formats, customer services, rental models, reporting systems and marketing channels. And, this is only the beginning,” she says.

Around 270 delegates were in attendance this year, making the event even bigger than the International Council of Shopping Centres (ICSC) research conference.

Radebe adds: “The popularity of the research conference shows the value that modern retail places on keeping pace with new developments and applications in technology, the latest world-class solutions and ever-changing consumer trends.”