Gene Detroyer

Professor, European School of Economics
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.
  • Posted on: 06/18/2018

    Is Amazon killing Barnes & Noble’s chances for a turnaround?

    Amazon didn't do anything but develop their own business. Barnes & Noble's fall had everything to do with Barnes & Noble not changing to meet a changing market. This is a great case study of a retailer that didn't define their business properly. Most simply they were a "book seller," but they believed they were a store.
  • Posted on: 06/18/2018

    Microsoft exploring checkout-less technologies

    IMMINENT! By the end of the year, Hema will have 60 cashier-less stores in China. And is not a small convenience-type store, it is a sophisticated supermarket. Any tech company should be looking at this technology. It is the future. While there are certainly technical hurdles to jump, tech experience has told us that those hurdles will in fact disappear. The biggest hurdle will be the reluctance of retailers to change. U.S. traditional retailers are historically slow to adapt.
  • Posted on: 06/18/2018

    Kroger walks away from Raleigh-Durham

    The "Kroger" name may be leaving the market, but Kroger is not. Why have two separate banners in the first place? Kroger bought Harris Teeter for a reason. If that reason was good, why operate a generic supermarket in a growing and upscale market? The fact is that the net closing is not the entire chain, it is only six stores. This was a no-brainer decision that should have been made long ago.
  • Posted on: 06/15/2018

    Sam’s to open small concept focused on tech, fresh and grab-and-go foods

    OK, this makes sense. But put a different name on it. Sam's is Sam's. It means something. It doesn't mean this. I think they are breaking the rules of Branding 101.
  • Posted on: 06/15/2018

    Marshalls brings Father’s Day gifting to Manhattan’s streets

    This is a fun promotion. Certainly garnering attention on a Manhattan street. But how effective is it? Maybe it will generate more gifts for dad that dad doesn't need or want? But the thing that really struck me was the sign in the image: "Marshalls -- Brands that WOW." Are you kidding? This is Marshalls.
  • Posted on: 06/14/2018

    Do retailers need RFID to do BOPIS right?

    It's worth repeating; "If true full coverage RFID could be implemented in stores, the amount of money saved on physical inventories would stun everyone."
  • Posted on: 06/11/2018

    Are retailers short-changing national grocery brands?

    There are only two strategies that work for private label; offering a better product at the same price or the same product at a better price. Those retailers who do that have proven to be successful. Today there is less trust in national brands and the trends and the research show it.
  • Posted on: 06/11/2018

    Brands win with TV 2.0 and the new direct mail

    I am blown away by the reduction in cost of TV advertising as it is described here. Forty years ago, both production and media were 10 times the numbers quoted here. Maybe I am missing something? I guess I am terribly influenced by my own behavior. I either stream shows or record them. Except for sports and news, no commercials reach my eyes. As far as direct mail, it hits the recycle been before it even reaches my apartment. Even the overbearing RH catalog.
  • Posted on: 06/07/2018

    Retailers get real with high-touch service

  • Posted on: 06/07/2018

    Neiman Marcus results show the latest sign of department store life

    There will continue to be an ebb and flow in the department store life cycle trend. But there is no way they the life cycle will change, and department stores are now on the end. Some like NM will continue, because of their upscale offering. But, online will continue to be the black cloud hanging over them and consumers will continue to gravitate to online with most of their needs.
  • Posted on: 06/07/2018

    Retailers get real with high-touch service

    Do you ever get the feeling that the last thing the retailer wants you to do is talk to someone?
  • Posted on: 06/07/2018

    How many e-mails are too much?

    Oh, my! I am really out of it. Of the 13 retailers in the list, the only one that sends me emails is Amazon and I welcome that. I get emails from airlines and hotels (are they considered retail for this purpose?), and I welcome them. Of course, once GDPR-like rules takes effect in the U.S., everything changes.
  • Posted on: 06/05/2018

    Is data-driven marketing holding back storytelling?

    Dealing with Big Data is difficult. Before it can be interpreted properly, it must be presented properly. That in fact is the big challenge. Data-driven marketing should not hold storytelling back, it should enhance it. Take a look at this video. It expresses over 100,000 data points that if we read we would never understand. But presented properly, it tells a great story.
  • Posted on: 06/05/2018

    What will Starbucks do without Howard Schultz?

    Unlike the first time Schultz left, this time Starbucks will do well. He is not making the same mistake twice.
  • Posted on: 06/05/2018

    Rue La La acquires Gilt Groupe in a flash

    Once upon a time flash sale sites were new and exciting. Bu, as online becomes more mainstream to the shopping experience, these sites will continue to wane. What was ubiquitous five years ago is become ho-hum and many sites have closed or consolidated.

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