PROFILE

Gene Detroyer

Professor, International Business, Guizhou University of Finance & Economics; Executive Director, Global Commerce Education
Most simply, Gene Detroyer makes things happen. He has been a business builder his entire career. He started two companies which were later sold. Today he is advising, consulting and motivating a range of clients both in the U.S. and internationally. Unable to stay away from start-ups, he is currently involved in building and launching an innovative experiential executive education program for US-based enterprises entering global markets, the G2 Experience, with support from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the Department of Commerce.
His traditional experience includes 17 years marketing consumer products through food, mass and drug channels. He is credited with building new businesses now worth over $400 million. A traditional career went out the window with his first start-up; putting TVs in supermarket aisles and putting advertising on them, which was merged into NBC. He has had consulting gigs with Coca Cola, companies like HSN wishing to bring their products to retail and start-ups. His second entrepreneurial venture brought the Today® Contraceptive Sponge back to market in the U.S.  That company was sold in 2007.
Beyond consumer products, he is Professor of Entrepreneurship and Business Strategy at The European School of Economics.  He also teaches at the Weller International Business School in Paris, France.
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  • Posted on: 08/10/2018

    Party City to run pilot with Amazon, ‘the world’s largest and most trafficked mall’

    If Party City doesn't sell on Amazon, someone else will.
  • Posted on: 08/10/2018

    Party City to run pilot with Amazon, ‘the world’s largest and most trafficked mall’

    Of course this makes sense. Why wouldn't Party City open a store in “the world’s largest and most trafficked mall" Per CEO Harrison? Amazon is not a competitor. It is a mall. Too many retailers think of Amazon as a competitor when the real competitors are other retailers that sell their goods on Amazon. Bravo for Harrison's forward thinking.
  • Posted on: 08/10/2018

    Walmart.com to offer easier returns for marketplace purchases

    Of course this is good for all: Walmart, third-party sellers and the shopper. Anything that makes it easier for the shopper will take barriers away from buying. But a game-changer? No. This is an EXPECTATION.
  • Posted on: 08/10/2018

    Can on-demand sales stabilize Blue Apron?

    It is a poor business model to begin with. It sounded great to the user until fatigue set in. The best thing it did was teach people how easy it was to prepare a nice meal so that one didn't need the kit. There is no way this is a turnaround.
  • Posted on: 07/26/2018

    Study: Online retailers losing billions in sales to out-of-stocks

    I am astounded by the study. Theoretically, out-of-stocks should not be a big issue for online retailers. The inventory is consolidated, the data is available, most of the inventory process and processes are automated. What am I missing? The other thing that surprises me is my own experience. I am sure I have run into out-of-stock issues when ordering online, but honestly I can't remember one.
  • Posted on: 07/26/2018

    7-Eleven franchisees have to pay up to stay in business


    7-Eleven management seems to have overlook two important things.
    1. The franchisees know how to run successful convenience stores. I suspect the corporate team has spent very little time behind a counter.
    2. The franchisees can pick up and go anywhere they want. 7-Eleven is not unique to the convenience store business by any means. The best ones can pick their opportunities just like an MVP in professional sports.
    Where would 7-Eleven corporate be without those MVPs?
  • Posted on: 07/26/2018

    Retailers throw ‘hiring parties’ to reach staffing goals

    I always disliked interviewing. It was like the interviewee had the "How to Interview" book in their back pocket. Rarely did you see the real person in this stilted environment. As often as I could, I got them out of the "across the desk" situation to better find out what they were all about. The idea of the hiring party does just that. It surfaces the real person and how they might fit in the organization. Cultural fit, per Bob Phibbs, is paramount.
  • Posted on: 07/26/2018

    Retailers throw ‘hiring parties’ to reach staffing goals

    Great comment, Bob! "Culture eats everything for breakfast, lunch and dinner."
  • Posted on: 07/24/2018

    Kellogg urges retailers to cater to ‘brick & order’ shoppers

    If retailers don't get used to the idea that shoppers want time-saving and convenient experiences they will be left behind. Each time technology offers a step to more convenience for the shopper, the shopper has taken it. While I am not suggesting that retailers look to online and ignore their stores, they should not fight it. Any effort to move people away from online connection with the idea that one wants to increase in-store traffic is a fool's errand. I could easily imagine in 25 or 30 years a day when there are no longer traditional supermarkets and most grocery shopping is order online and pick up or delivery.
  • Posted on: 07/24/2018

    Is robotic micro-fulfillment the path to streamlined grocery pickup?

    I actually know the company and its principals well. This is an amazing company and their ideas are not pie-in-the-sky. They have been successful in other areas of logistical fulfillment. I believe this idea is the future of grocery retailing. It provides the time saving and convenience that is the unstoppable trend of shoppers today and more so tomorrow. As technology continues to develop tools to make shopping easier, consumers will adapt quickly and yesterday's way will look like more and more of a burden.
  • Posted on: 07/23/2018

    How should specialty retail respond to Amazon’s apparel push?

    The Rebecca Minkoff store in NYC is a perfect example of your suggestion. That is how far brick-and-mortar has to go.
  • Posted on: 07/23/2018

    How should specialty retail respond to Amazon’s apparel push?

    I agree with your point.
  • Posted on: 07/23/2018

    How should specialty retail respond to Amazon’s apparel push?

    I am not sure that "come in, see, touch and try the clothes on" is really an advantage any more. From observing my wife buy apparel; she shops online, orders multiple items, they arrive, she touches and feels them, tries them on (and even sometimes asks me my opinion). She keeps what delights her and sends the rest back. It's easier, more convenient and takes considerably less time than going to the store. In our family she is not unique. My daughter and daughter-in-law shop that way for their entire families.
  • Posted on: 07/20/2018

    Costco, Sam’s Club and the great Polish hot dog controversy

    Sam's is having great fun with this "gotcha," but it is little more than that and media noise. For Costco management, most simply, they let it go too far. The solution is easy and could have been implemented quickly.
  • Posted on: 07/19/2018

    Seven ways Gen Z is different that don’t include tech

    When I saw the headline, I was wondering what the study would find. To my surprise, I agree with just about every point they make. The two that stand out for me are Commute Averse and Mall Agnostic. Commute averse doesn't mean they don't like to travel and experience. They do. They will hop on a plane and fly across the ocean sooner than they will travel an hour for work or 30 minutes to go shopping. Mall agnostic is a relative term. Once upon a time shopping and going to the mall was entertainment. For these folks, their entertainment agenda is far away from the stroll through the mall or even actual shopping.

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