Gilbert Harrison has reinvented his Financo Forum, pushing aside the usual panel of department store veterans and merchant princes to bring on some modern-day Web geeks and social networkers.
“It’s a new world today,” said Harrison, chairman of Financo Inc. “It’s a panel that reflects the changes in retailing and the new consumer behavior.”
Financo forums have a reputation for stirring the pot, with Harrison historically stacking the panels with executives with opposing points of view. But Monday’s lineup seems rigged more for discussion than discord. Speakers include Tom Arrix, Facebook’s vice president of U.S. sales; Ben Fischman, chief executive of Rue La La; Daniel Schock, Google’s retail industry director, and Chip Wilson, founder, chairman, chief innovation and branding officer for Lululemon.
Harrison is even tempering his role, for the first time serving as co-moderator, along with Nicole Lapin, anchor for CNBC’s “Worldwide Exchange.” They’ll both be posing questions to the panel and the audience, which will be filled with the likes of Mindy Grossman, Lew Frankfort, Joe Gromek, Matt Rubel, Steve Madden, Mickey Drexler, Brendan Hoffman and Richard Baker.
“The idea is to bridge the gap between the old world and the new world and for people to understand the changes that affect their companies,” said Harrison. “We intend to touch on how companies have changed their marketing and branding strategies as a result of the growth of social networking and the new driving forces influencing consumer behavior.
“It’s a whole new retail environment that has to be understood. The issues are, how do you reach the consumer today? How do you give them something different? What happens with traditional advertising and how does social networking affect it?”
After 21 years, Financo’s annual event remains one of retailing’s hottest tickets, with over 300 people expected tonight at the Harmonie Club. The event is held the same week as the National Retail Federation’s “Big Show” convention in New York. Right after Financo, many in the crowd will swing over to the Yale Club, where Mayor Bloomberg’s office is staging a meeting with about 100 retailers to discuss Fashion’s Night Out and other initiatives to spur business in the city.
@chanel and @pharrell dropped what’s being dubbed as the world’s most exclusive sneakers yesterday. The Adidas Originals NMD Hu, which Williams designed in collaboration with Chanel and @adidasoriginals, has a waiting list of over 120K people who pre-registered online at chanelatcolette.fr –– and only 500 pairs are on sale. The singer predicted the resale value of the shoes could reach $40K. Read the full interview on WWD.com. Link in bio. #wwdfashion (📷: Dominique Maître)
@imanshumpert is diving deeper into his creative endeavors and relaunching his clothing line, Post 90s, and is helping to raise money for the hurricane victims in St. Maarten with a jersey he’s designed with his brother. The Cleveland Cavaliers player talked to WWD about kneeling during the national anthem, working with fashion brands and how he wants to be more than an @nba player. Read the interview on WWD.com #wwdfashion (📷: George Chinese)
Not only does #TheProfit return to CNBC tonight, but @marcuslemonis has launched @shopmarcus, a new shopping and lifestyle retail experience in Aspen and Chicago, with more locations to come. The retail stores offer in-store stylists and a variety of contemporary womenswear selections.
“It’s life, I’m going to face it,” @mingxi11 sighed. “I fell, but you know, I think the most important thing is that I get back up. I had the love, the help from my sister — the girl next to me Gizele [Oliveira] — she’s so nice. When I went backstage everybody was trying to comfort me like ‘Oh Ming, it’s OK.’ I’m really, really touched. I think it’s them who gave me the courage to go back on stage for the finale,” Xi told WWD of her fall at the @victoriassecret fashion show. (📷: David Fisher) #wwdfashion #vsfashionshow #victoriassecret
@louisvuitton tapped @therealpeterlindbergh for its latest city-centric photo book, which is part of a series called Fashion Eye. The primarily black and white book captures the spirit of Berlin in 57 images shot between 1989 and 2019. “Berlin is an inspiration for me, more than a city. I mean @millajovovich is simply Berlin!” said Lindbergh. #wwdfashion
“You know, I think audiences expect a certain performance so I have to deliver to them what they’re expecting to a certain degree. But I’m also a different actor and a different person, I have my own spin on the character,” says @noahegalvin of his takeover of the leading role in “Dear Evan Hansen” following the departure of @bensplatt, who originated the role. Read WWD’s interview with the 23-year-old actor on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
For pre-fall 2018, @etro created richly-colored wonderland, using tapestries, textiles and wallpapers from the Eastern world at large. The line featured floral and graphic prints and jacquard motifs, like this two-piece look featured here. #wwdfashion (📷: Giovanna Pavesi)
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)