Leader of Shopper Outcomes
Leader of Shopper Outcomes, McKesson Canada
Paula Courtney is a retail strategist, trusted by retail leaders around the world to help them refine and create a superior customer experience. She is the product owner and chief collaborator at WisePlum, a SaaS-based research tool designed to measure specific customer insights. WisePlum is a collaboration between LoyaltyOne, a global leader in customer analytics and loyalty program design, and the Verde Group, a customer insights consultancy specialized in identifying, measuring, analyzing and resolving the financial impact of customer dissatisfaction. As CEO and Founder of the Verde Group, Paula has pioneered methodologies that have transformed retailers’ understanding of their customers. Paula is a sought-after industry keynote speaker and a frequent lecturer at the Wharton School of Business. She is fluent in French, Spanish and Portuguese.
Senior Vice President, Customer Experience
Senior Vice President, Customer Experience
VP, Consulting Services & Managing Director, Toronto
Francois is one of the founding partners at Relation1 and currently serves as VP of Consulting Services and General Manager of the Toronto office. Francois oversees Relation1's consultancy business practice and a diverse team of industry experts on retail, loyalty and data-driven marketing. Through his leadership, Relation1 is committed to working alongside our clients to solve their most difficult problems in reaching personalization and to harness its fullest potential. He is a regular speaker at conferences and industry events on this key topic. A graduate of the University of Sherbrooke, Francois is an expert in digital marketing and marketing technologies. His dual expertise on these subjects allows him to identify the most optimal way to leverage IT and customer data for the benefits of customer-centric marketing. He is passionate about developing data-driven strategies, pragmatic implementation roadmaps and innovative solutions that increase sales and drive customer engagement.
Founder & Principal
M.E. LeBlanc & Company
Michael has 20+ years of brand/retail/marketing leadership experience and is considered by many as a pioneer in the Canadian omni-channel and e-Commerce retail space. As an award-winning insight driven strategic marketer with a passion for holistic retail brand/customer experience, Michael has been on the front lines of retail industry change for his entire career with brands such as Black & Decker, Levi Strauss & Co, Hudson’s Bay, CanWest Media, The Shopping Channel and Herbal Magic. After spending almost three years advocating and lobbying for the Canadian retail industry at Retail Council of Canada (RCC), Michael formed M. E. LeBlanc & Company to leverage this knowledge and experience back onto the front lines and regularly is invited to share his insights on the current and future retail industry in Canada and around the world.
VP Marketing & Ecommerce
Frederick has joined Golf Town as Vice President of Marketing and eCommerce, to turn the brand around by elevating its digital footprint and creating an interconnected retail landscape that allows eCommerce to successfully coexist with brick and mortar. From designing and implementing a cutting-edge omni-channel plan to enhancing Golf Town’s digital presence, Frederick applies an innovative approach to building emotional connections with customers. Before engaging in the journey to establish Golf Town Ltd.’s brand as Canada’s home of golf, Frederick led the Sport Chek digital marketing and eCommerce transformation as SVP of Marketing. He also brought forward ground-breaking digital change with the launch of Canada’s first digital flyer program and rollout of several eCommerce sites for the FGL and Marks banners (Sport Chek, Sports Experts, Atmosphere, Marks). For over 15 years, Frederick has influenced top organizations in roles such as Vice President for Global Brand Marketing & Digital Strategy at LG Electronics Corp in Seoul, Marketing Director for Microsoft Europe, and Marketing Director at Nokia. Prior to revolutionizing brands as a digital disruptor, Frederick’s entrepreneurial spirit led him to take part in two successful start-ups projects in Europe — one in eCommerce and another in media.
Chief Marketing Officer
Lauren MacDonald is the Chief Marketing Officer for IKEA Canada. She oversees Marketing Communication, Media, Consumer Insights, and Loyalty and CRM and sits on the Canadian senior leadership team. Previous to joining IKEA, Lauren was with PepsiCo for ten years. Lauren has a rich international background and has both studied and worked abroad. She has lived in five different countries spanning North America, Europe, UK, and the Middle East. She is a classically trained marketer who has worked on blue chip brands like Pepsi, Gatorade, and Walkers Crisps. Lauren holds a Bachelor of Commerce (Honours) degree from Queen’s University. Lauren is a steadfast Toronto Blue Jays fan, baseball trivia enthusiast and avid yogi.
Director Consulting Services
Zena is a CRM marketing, strategy and loyalty professional with over a decade of experience in the UK and North American industries. Starting her career as a data analyst, she has a deep appreciation for data and turning it into tangible output for clients. From data matching, propensity modelling to management reporting, getting the right information out of systems is half the battle! Building on her knowledge of data science, she has since moved into client lead, strategy and account management roles, helping clients understand what the data points mean and turning insight into actions across automotive, CPG and recently FI verticals. She has previously worked at Proximity London, Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH London), dunnhumby and Cossette. Being an advocate for client’s customers, she believes that putting the customer at the heart of business decisions and making their experiences personalized is the key to growing their loyalty and to keep them coming back. Zena holds a Bachelor of Science with Honors in Computing and Management Science from Sheffield Hallam University, England.
VP, Integrated Marketing
Trinh Tham is a seasoned business leader with experience developing top talent, P&L management and growing some of Canada’s favourite brands including Sobeys, Tim Hortons, CTV, HBO, Loblaws and President’s Choice. Trinh is currently the VP, Integrated Marketing at Sobeys with oversight of all banner and private label brand strategy, marketing services, media, digital and social media, creative studio, sponsorships, and PR. Prior to Sobeys, Trinh also held roles as VP of Integrated Marketing at Tim Hortons and Head of Marketing for Entertainment TV Brands at Bell Media. She also spent close to 8 years of her career at Loblaws where she held various roles including Senior Director of Merchandising, Senior Director of Private Label Marketing and Senior Director of Ethnic Marketing. Trinh obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration with a Major in Marketing and a Minor in Economics from Wilfrid Laurier University in Waterloo, Ontario.
Peter Van Stolk
Peter van Stolk is the CEO of Sustainable Produce Urban Delivery or SPUD.caTM, the largest pure play online grocer in Canada. SPUD.ca is focused on creating meaningful relationships with Canadians around the benefits of local, organic food. SPUD.ca operates in 4 markets and utilizes proprietary technology. This allows the company to provide free delivery throughout the 4 Western Canadian cities it services. With 700 employees, SPUD.ca is building community among its customers both online and off with a unique omni-channel strategy of hyper-local small markets through its retail brands, Be Fresh Local Market, Blush Lane Organics and Organic Acres Market. van Stolk believes: “Food will have the greatest impact on our generation. How we think about food, how we buy food, and how we consume food will change, and we are excited to be a part of this transformation”. As founder of Jones Soda Company in 1987, van Stolk served as CEO and Chairman of the Board of Directors until 2007. Jones Soda was one of the first consumer branded companies that recognized the potential of Social Media in creating emotional connections with its consumers. van Stolk has been recognized for his business savvy and innovative branding strategies in various publications such as The New York Times®, CNN®, Wall Street Journal®, Fast CompanyTM, Inc.MagazineTM and People Magazine®. Peter has received numerous business awards including Price, Waterhouse, Coopers’ 40 under 40, Brand Week’s Top 100 Marketer, and was chosen as one of Canada’s Top One Hundred Canadians by MacLean’s Magazine®.