The Electronic Retailing Association

New Member Benefit: APAC Chapter inaugural meeting

The inaugural APAC Committee Meeting at the Budapest Conference on 18th June 2019.

The inaugural meeting of the APAC Chapter took place in the late afternoon of the first day of the Budapest conference

Over the past 12 months the association has been in a transition process and has seen the signup of many new member companies from the APAC region. This first meeting was intended to establish communication, to learn and to understand the specific needs of the APAC region and to sharpen our association´s mission in this regard.

The APAC Chapter can be a forum to:

  • exchange information and to network
  • expand and promote self-regulation
  • organise specific educational sessions
  • represent the industry with the official authorities
  • attract more members (product suppliers and technology partners) from the APAC region to expand our network
Jon Gregory, Managing Director Oak Lawn Marketing / Shop Japan, at the ERA Global inaugural APAC Chapter meeting reporting on his past experiences with the Asia committee in the U.S.

After this brief introduction, JO handed over to Jonathan Gregory from Shop Japan who had initiated and been very active on the Asia committee of the former ERA (U.S). Jonathan reported on his past experiences with the Asia committee. What had started with a lot of enthusiasm, may have subsequently failed as the Asia committee became a very small “copy+paste” of the U.S. body with a clear U.S. centric focus. It appears that the committee never really communicated with the local markets, nor listened to the special and specific interests of its APAC members. Jon volunteered to preside over the Chapter and serve as the organisational hub for all interested parties.

The initial introduction was followed by an intensive discussion about where and how this committee could be helpful. Contributions from India, Australia or China showed, that this vast region is (to no surprise) under various legal and regulatory regimes which might require different approaches there. We have learned however, that many new players and potential is there, which should be discovered and connected to our community.

ERA Global currently consists of more than 28 different countries and markets with many different languages and local regulations

Julian Oberndörfer highlighted that the European “core” of ERA Global also consists of more than 28 different countries and markets with many different languages and local regulations. Despite the many differences, ERA Europe was set up 15 years ago and was a successful model as members managed to find common interests and foster these. Therefore, establishing regular and coordinated communication amongst APAC members is a good start which might lead to more formalised actions or events in the future.

The attendees agreed to stay in regular contact and to establish this communication to further develop this initiative.