David Spear

Senior Partner, Industry Consulting, Retail, CPG and Hospitality, Teradata

Dave brings 25+ years of experience working across the Retail/CPG industry and Consulting space, driving strategic innovation, value and ROI. Dave continually finds himself at the intersection of brand, consumer and digital, which typically necessitates some level of digital transformation work. Currently, Dave is a Senior Industry Consulting Leader for Retail, CPG and Hospitality industries at Teradata, where he consults with a portfolio of 50+ clients across the Americas. A big believer in Client Centricity, Dave is a student of building trust and long-term relationships with key stakeholders.

Prior to joining Teradata, Dave has held numerous roles at large enterprises such as IBM, Capgemini, Coca-Cola and UPS, while also leading a small entrepreneurial mobile company for nearly 5 years. Dave graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point and earned his MBA from the Goizueta Business School at Emory University. He lives in Atlanta with his wife and has 4 boys.

  • Posted on: 09/17/2021

    Will Macy’s be thankful it brought back its parade this year?

    Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is an iconic event, and I'm glad to hear the company leadership is bringing it back full scale this year. The made-for-TV event just wasn't the same. Importantly, I look at this American event in a similar manner as baseball and apple pie; it's difficult to do without. Will the physical event help drive sales? In part, yes, but there are so many other factors to consider as well. I'm rooting for Macy's and I can't wait to see the floats and the oversized balloons in the heart of Manhattan.
  • Posted on: 09/17/2021

    Can retailers benefit from tapping employee emotions?

    A room filled with a variety of professionals with diverse skill sets who feel passion and emote about a variety of issues will unleash more creativity than any traditional meeting. I've been fortunate to both LEAD and PARTICIPATE in highly collaborative jam sessions with large/small rooms filled with software engineers, developers, architects, senior sales reps, marketers, consultants, finance and HR reps -- and when leveraging transformation methodologies like design thinking are applied correctly, it's incredible to see how a 30-year old way of doing business is reimagined into an entirely new way of working. The speed at which this can be accomplished is FAST. A few days of white boarding, building demos, failing fast, restarting, demoing again -- before the end of three days, a complete redesign can emerge. Sure -- there is a longer tail to finalizing the new model, product or service with the layering in of technology and other process/business controls, but the speed at which this can be done is truly remarkable. So bring your passion, your ideas, your positive and negative views of business because in a highly collaborative, highly productive meeting with diverse groups, watch AMAZING unfold before your eyes!
  • Posted on: 09/15/2021

    Will the Kroger/Instacart deal redefine grocery shopping convenience in America?

    I see this as a bit of catch-up, but there was another famous company that played that game for a while and it served them extremely well. Believe it or not, Apple wasn't the first to market in a number of product categories, but with their ground-breaking experiential simplicity and design elegance in nearly everything they created, it captured the hearts and minds of millions. Kroger and Instacart could do something similar if they collaborate to solve sticky supply chain and shopper journey issues that persist today.
  • Posted on: 09/14/2021

    Will gym equipment showrooms pump up Hy-Vee’s supermarket sales?

    This is a very interesting move that could pay big dividends for Hy-Vee if executed correctly. The health and wellness ecosystem is expansive, dynamic and very tricky to traverse, given many of the federal laws around HIPAA and other associated privacy matters. I'm assuming Hy-Vee will stay away from primary healthcare services so as to minimize its exposure to federal laws around HIPAA. If so, and if it can position itself with its target audience as a trusted source for food nutrition and wellness products/services, then it could create a differentiating, more encompassing value proposition for its shoppers. Like anything, this novel partnership must have an enduring roadmap of value associated with it or shoppers will no longer hop on a bike to cycle before or after buying their groceries.
  • Posted on: 09/14/2021

    Will Kohl’s be known for something other than its retail partners?

    Kohl's will continue to survive with unique associations with Amazon and Sephora, but they'll slowly erode their brand value over time. And think of the risk to the brand if Amazon and/or Sephora leave? What then? Who then? The level of risk this implies is significant and something that should worry any board director. That said, I do like the partnership with Sephora because it's one of the most innovative brands in all of retail, and they have superior talent at the senior levels of their organization. Don't be surprised if Sephora starts to "consult" with Kohl's on a number of in-store initiatives to re-make the rest of the store on a par equal to the Sephora space. It will be interesting to watch it unfold!
  • Posted on: 09/13/2021

    Can Kroger offset its margin headwinds?

    Given today's market dynamics Kroger has a good deal of elasticity to raise prices, and it's interesting they've taken an investment mindset for certain categories/products. Layering in the odds of beating last year's numbers makes the financial decision making even more interesting. Don't misunderstand me. I think it's great Kroger has the financial wherewithal to make these decisions, but for how long? Inflation is and will continue to be a drag on the economy and will drive prices higher, faster for the balance of the year, and likely at least until end of Q1 '22. No one relishes in this -- consumers, retailers, suppliers, but it's the unfortunate situation all companies are facing today. I predict - and soon - Kroger will raise prices across the board for nearly all products and categories.
  • Posted on: 09/10/2021

    Restaurant chains roll out virtual brands to reach new customer groups

    The concept of ghost and dark kitchens has been around a couple of years, but the pandemic clearly accelerated its popularity and business model. Whether it's shopper pickup or third-party delivery firms completing the last mile, you'll see this trend continue to grow and evolve over the next couple of years. For companies like Walmart and Kroger -- it's almost a risk-free way to test all kinds of ideas and see what sticks. It'll be interesting to see how many grocery/restaurant chains enter the fray.
  • Posted on: 09/10/2021

    What’s the ideal age to start a retail business?

    The studies seem very common-sensical to me, but regardless if you're 19 or 71 -- if you have a great idea, a great product/service and it's priced to offer incredible value to consumers, you're likely to find success.
  • Posted on: 09/09/2021

    Primark picking up pace of U.S. expansion after being slowed by the pandemic

    Primark will have to thread the needle between consumers' growing positivity towards discounters and resale items. That's a tough business model to make work, especially without an online presence.
  • Posted on: 09/09/2021

    Will shoppers flock to or avoid stores for Halloween and Christmas?

    I see a two pronged reality with an uptick in foot traffic at smaller stores, boutique shops, and for specialty store owners while at the same time a steady demand at larger big box, deal-oriented stores like Costco. Consumers are keen to find new, fresh ideas and cool items at local, boutique shops. At the same time, these same consumers need to stock up on staples at a place where they believe in the value of the deals offered. I was at Costco this past weekend and it was absolutely packed with shoppers! As we head into Halloween and Thanksgiving, I'm very bullish that foot traffic will be well paced.
  • Posted on: 09/07/2021

    Nordstrom ain’t what it used to be before the pandemic

    Dick - I agree with you and to pick up on your last question -- "how long of a runway does Nordstrom have to weather the storm?" A huge decision looms for Nordstrom senior leadership. Do they continue with their current business model and try to weather the storm OR do they make a huge pivot to evolve their offerings to a very different shopper today? So when everyone asks the question why do senior executives get paid so much? In a microcosm, here's a perfect example -- and the resulting decision will have make or break consequences for Nordstrom.
  • Posted on: 09/07/2021

    Why can’t CMOs And CIOs just get along?

    The disconnect between marketing and IT has been in place for decades, but it has reached epic proportions today because of the rapid evolution of digital, enabling shoppers to be super savvy and intelligent in their selections. In many respects, today's shoppers have more information than the marketers or IT professionals who are supposedly leading them -- which makes the collaboration among C-level execs so critical. The primary reason is to win the consumer back, to earn the trust and confidence of the shopper -- to stay ahead of the shopper so that brands can deliver moments of delight, surprise and value. Can this be accomplished with shared leadership? Nope, co-sharing duties brings a whole new litany of issues. It's imperative that the CEO effectively manage his/her team and it's one of the most important priorities in modern times.
  • Posted on: 09/03/2021

    Can Amazon create the Prime Video of audio services?

    Voice will continue to grow in many ways, but I don't think live concerts offered by Prime Voice is going to move the needle. In fact I'm a bit surprised; it seems a bit me-too for Amazon. They normally disrupt, not follow. But as I say this, their model is and always has been to test, fail fast and/or win big and move on. Although tiny compared to some of their other market disruptions, it's another chess piece move on the board.
  • Posted on: 09/03/2021

    Is ‘groundedness’ the antidote trend to digital whiplash?

    OK -- "groundedness" is a new word for me. I checked the Merriam-Webster's dictionary and it's not in it. I get the idea, but to me, this is an awkward way to describe what entrepreneurs do best when they see a market opportunity -- they innovate and bring new + highly relevant products and services to shoppers like you and me, regardless of if said products offer local flavor or nostalgic feelings. Is this an underlying mega-trend? I wouldn't classify it as "mega," but there is plenty of opportunity when it comes to hyper-localization and many retailers are using advanced analytics to uncover new insights that allow them to change assortments by geography based on hundreds of data inputs.
  • Posted on: 09/02/2021

    Can marketers successfully shift focus from acquisition to retention?

    Wholeheartedly agree, Michael. In my consulting with large firms, I'm still amazed when I hear "well, that's the digital team's responsibility" or "you're gonna have to talk to our digital team because they operate independent of anyone else in the company." Wait, what? Most companies should understand the concept of a seamless, cross-channel experience. This requires a balance of both existing customer retention and new customer acquisition. Both are highly important. Both are necessary. The mix of dollars will change based on prevailing market dynamics, but that's the job of the professional marketer -- to make the right call on spend allocation.

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