Food for Thought


The First in a Retail Podcast Series on Developing Markets from The Store

Today the Store launches a podcast series on developing retail markets. The first one is all about India.

India is among the world's fastest growing markets A nation of shop keepers, India is rapidly introducing modern stores and practices that potentially will transform retailing, improve quality of life and provide extraordinary opportunities for entrepreneurs and investors. Risks as well as opportunities abound as any economy experiences rapid change.

These factors are especially present in India because of the country's vast size, the complexity of its culture and the scale and diversity of its population.

These podcasts are designed to help navigate these challenges with unique insights into how consumers, retailing industry, and society are changing. The contributors include some of India leading retailers and noted authorities on Indian retailing.

The interviews were recorded at The Store, WPP global retail practice Annual Asia Retail Conference held during March 2008, in Mumbai and Delhi. Speakers at the event shared knowledge and best practices with WPP colleagues and clients, as part of WPP's fundamental commitment to retail worldwide.

Please download and listen to the podcasts. We believe you will find them insightful.




Click on this link for a pdf explaining the content and how to download


Or to download the podcasts using itunes click on the link below

Or to listen via a browser click below

If you would like to listen using an mp3 file copy click below



Why oil and shopping don't mix


A moment of blog silence

I am in China at the moment and thankfully safe in Shanghai when the earthquake struck. Whilst the initial reports were of minor impact, it soon became very clear, especially in the Chinese press, that this was a major catastrophe - China worst earthquake for more that three decades.

My Shanghai Daily newspaper this morning reports that the current death toll is close to 15,000 with 14,463 in Sichuan alone and the numbers are still rising.There are numerous heart stopping stories of disaster on the one hand and miraculous escapes on the other. Like the more that 201 students from one school who died after a three story dormitory collapsed on about 400 students who were taking an afternoon nap, and with the China’s one child policy these families have lost their only Child. The teenager who for no specific reason decided to go for a short walk out of her village shortly before devastating 7.8 magnitude quake struck and survived, whilst the rest of her entire village perished. The baby girl who survived buried under rubble and the bodies of her loving parents.

China’s Premier Wen Jiabao has been remarkably visible, a fundamental change from the more normal distance senior officials have historically taken and he is showing a more human side of the Chinese government. Speaking to a group of villages in Yingxiu Town at he epicentre he said ‘ Your pain is our pain. Saving peoples lives is the most important task.’

Helping the survivors is key and whilst the might and resource of the People’s Liberation Army has been mobilised individuals and companies in China can make a great difference. Retailer B&Q, China's leading home improvement store chain, has swiftly launched an appeal with both staff, some of whom have been directly impacted by the disaster and customers with collection points in every one of their stores across China. More initiatives from B&Q are being planned. Let’s hope many more retailers in China follow their example and people across the world that can give, do so.

We often think of China in terms of the mass of 1.3 billion population but this tragedy abruptly reminds us that this magnitude is made up of individuals and their families whose lives can be dramatically shattered in 28 seconds. Let’s take a moment of blog silence to think about it…



David Roth