Back to the Future Final_Page_01.jpgBack to the Future:

Can Online Visual Engagement Reverse the Retail Apocalypse?

Everywhere we turn, we are hearing about the significant crisis in traditional retailing. It is being referred to as the “Retail Apocalypse”. In the first quarter of 2017 alone, at least 9 major retailers declared bankruptcy. So far this year, we’ve seen more than 3,500 store closings announced.

At the same time, retail is actually growing as an industry. Retail sales in the first quarter of 2017 increased 4.1% over the first quarter of 2016. While this growth is modest, it is growth nonetheless.

The brick and mortar side of the retail business is taking a brutal pounding, but given the industry growth, making references to an “Apocalypse” is fundamentally wrong. This isn’t an end of days. It’s a metamorphosis, a Darwinian adaptation to a new way of life for those who can master it.

In “Back to the Future: Can Online Visual Engagement Reverse the Retail Apocalypse?”, Recursive Labs CEO, Bud Albers, uses his decades of experience walking companies through the physical to digital convergence to:

  • Describe the retail landscape and the threat,
  • Identify traditional growth models that have failed brick and mortar retail,
  • Establish a new model, and
  • Provide tools to help traditional retailers flip existing models on their head.

About Bud Albers

As Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Getty Images, Bud led the company’s bricks to clicks transitions into what J. P. Morgan referred to as “one of the most successful web-based businesses around.”

Subsequently as CTO for MediaNet Digital, he led the product, services and operations efforts for the launch of many of the music services focused on competing with Steve Jobs and iTunes, including Microsoft, AOL, Yahoo, HMV, Virgin and Samsung, helping the music industry transition from selling physical discs to what is now almost an exclusively digital product.

Most recently, Bud helped traditional television and film transition as a result of the disruption posed by online video streaming, as Executive Vice President and CTO of Disney. There he was responsible for all of the online, mobile, social and gaming technologies for Disney and their subsidiary brands which included ESPN, ABC, and ABC News. In this role, he also oversaw online video streaming operations that set new records for audience size and video volume.