Co-Founder & CEO of Retail Cities
Over the last 20 years, Ray has focused on understanding the retailer-on-retailer competition and how that changes brand strategies and investments, and through the years has become a world-renowned expert on the dynamics of retail competition and the future of the commerce. Previously, during his time at Kantar Consulting as Vice President of Research and Analytics, he was a founding member of Kantar Retail’s global retail forecasting team, where he was responsible for the direction of Kantar Retail’s global data that supports all of Kantar Retail Market Insights’ retailer forecasting products worldwide.
Founding partner, Food by Design
Marielle studied Industrial Design engineering at the University of Technology (TU) in Delft, the Netherlands, and then worked as food marketing specialist at Unilever. Since 2002 she has been an independent food designer, combining her marketing experience with design skills.
As an industrial designer, Marielle has been trained to design products that are produced on a large scale. Therefore she focuses on food and drink that is made in high quantities. She actively involves both producer and consumer to achieve this, and she uses all her professional design tools she can put her hands on. She has worked for more than 80 food companies.
Edgar Elzerman (Moderator)
Owner, Elzerman Consulting
Edgar Elzerman started his career at Royal Ahold in the Netherlands. In the 12 years that he has worked for the company, he entered in a Fast-Track-Development Plan as a Management Trainee, continued as a Senior Category Manager where he was responsible for the Portfolio of Categories. Thereafter he worked as the Director of Business Development and subsequently as the Senior Director European Sourcing at Ahold Europe. For the next five years, Edgar worked at Ahold USA as the Senior Director Business Development, developing and implementing strategic initiatives and thereafter as the Vice President of Private Brands, managing the Ahold USA Private Brand Program.
Founder and Coach, Former Tesco, Buyerology ltd.
Karen Green, former Tesco/Boots buyer, is one of the UK’s top sales experts, having been on both side of the negotiating table to deliver profitable sales growth. She has over 10 years experience developing private label products from Christmas puddings to sushi for many UK grocery chains.
She is currently UK sales advisor for UN International trade centre supporting growing food companies from developing countries to launch their products into the UK market. She also works with a number of food and non food companies to achieve profitable sales growth by selling more and selling better
She is an award-winning business consultant, speaker and performance coach and author of two best-selling books – Recipe for Success, shortlisted for Business Book Award, and Buyer-ology®. Karen is also a passionate foodie and regularly volunteers to judge Great Taste awards.
Co-founder/CEO of Unravel Neuromarketing Research
As a much sought-after speaker, Tim Zuidgeest is one of the leading neuromarketing experts in the Netherlands. Tim is co-founder of the fastest growing neuromarketing agency Unravel Research, where they help brands such as Albert Heijn, Heineken and PostNl to take a look into the unconscious mind of the consumer. Next to that, he is co-founder of Studio ST&T, the marketing agency that translates scientific insights into our behavior into effective marketing. Tim is passionate about psychology and neuromarketing research and likes to share his knowledge about consumer psychology, marketing and communication.
In his well-attended talks, he reveals how to use brain science to create more brain-friendly websites, enticing ads and compelling stores. He loves to talk to new people and share inspiration, knowledge, and positive energy.
Paul van der Raad (Panelist)
Global Commercial Director Protix
With over 25 years of experience in the international pet food industry and European grocery market, Paul van der Raad works primarily with private labels. Paul joined Vital Petfood Group in 1997, held various positions within VPG and was responsible for product management, marketing, sales & customer services, export sales and as group sales Marketing Director. Between 2010 and 2020, he held the position of CEO.
He then went on to becoming the CEO of Henne Pet Food, a Danish family-owned company that produces food and nutritional supplements for dogs and cats based on fresh salmon. Since 2021, Paul is Global Commercial Director at Protix,a leading company in insect-based ingredients for healthy and sustainable pet food.
Wouter Lefevere (Panelist)
Chief Commercial Officer Tom&Co
Wouter Lefevere, in his role as the Chief Procurement Officer, oversees the purchasing and supply chain strategy at Tom&Co. With an impressive background in the retail sector, he started on his career at Lidl, accumulating eight years of diverse responsibilities spanning Lidl Belgium, Luxembourg, France, and the Netherlands. Leveraging his extensive experience, he became Head of International Buying at Spar, where he managed the entire purchasing department.
In 2020, Wouter furthered his career as the Managing Director of Category Management at Aldi Nord, overseeing responsibilities such as range management, quality control, pricing and promotions, planograms, brand management, and corporate social responsibility for the Netherlands.