As the leader of the retail and commerce tech ecosystem in Israel, I’m constantly being asked which retail events and conferences startups and retailers should attend?
In 2019, we compiled a list of the top 10 retail tech conferences, but since then more conferences and events joined the list and it was time to get it updated. For some of these events I can testify from personal experience, some from recommendations, and others I can only say I found them online and are on my wishlist, but in any case, all of the events on this list are top retail events to consider if you are working in retail tech or retail innovation, or if you work for a tech startup in the space.
Events are listed according to the date they occur, not according to importance. But first –
Attending retail conferences can provide a wealth of benefits for individuals and organizations working in the retail industry. These events offer a unique opportunity to learn from industry leaders, network with peers, and stay up-to-date on the latest trends and technologies.
One of the main benefits of attending retail conferences is the opportunity to learn from experts in the field. Conference organizers typically invite keynote speakers and panelists who are leaders in the industry, and who have a wealth of experience and knowledge to share. These speakers often cover a wide range of topics, such as digital transformation, customer experience, and supply chain management, providing attendees with valuable insights that they can apply to their own businesses.
Another benefit of attending retail conferences is the opportunity to network with peers. These events bring together individuals and organizations from all over the industry, providing a chance to make new connections and build relationships with people who share similar interests and challenges. This networking can lead to new partnerships, collaborations, or even job opportunities.
Retail conferences also provide an opportunity to stay up-to-date on the latest trends and technologies. Many of these events feature exhibitors and vendors showcasing new products and services, and attendees can learn about the latest innovations in areas such as artificial intelligence, mobile commerce, and data analytics. This knowledge can help organizations stay competitive in the ever-changing retail landscape.
In addition, attending a retail conference can also be a great way to get inspired. Hearing success stories from industry leaders and other companies, learning about new and creative ideas, and being in an environment surrounded by like-minded individuals can give attendees a renewed sense of energy and motivation for their own business or job.
NRF Big Show | NYC, US | January 13-16
This year I had the pleasure to attend NRF’s Retail Big Show myself, and wow was it big! A dedicated innovation zone, thousands of presenters, lots of side events and plenty of networking opportunities. It was great to catch up with old friends and meet new ones, and I even took a picture with Steve Dennis!
EuroShop | Disseldorf, Germany | 25 Feb – 3 Mar
The EuroShop retail trade fair is one of the largest and most influential retail trade shows in Germany. Held once every 3 years (so next one in 2026!) in Düsseldorf, the conference attracts thousands of industry professionals from around the world. Attendees come to learn about the latest trends, technologies, and innovations in the retail industry, and to network with other professionals in the field.
While I didn’t attend for myself – many of my friends and even my husband (who is also in retail tech!) reported back that this has been a great event. 5 days of sessions, exhibitions and networking. This one is definitely on my wishlist!
Smart Retail Expo | London, UK | Feb 28 – Mar 1st
Haven’t attended, but looks like a great event, and always a good excuse to visit London just when it’s coming out of its winter nap.
The Smart Retail Expo is a leading event for retailers and technology companies to showcase and discuss the latest innovations in the industry. The event brings together industry leaders and experts to share their knowledge and insights on the future of retail technology, including topics such as artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and the Internet of Things.
The Retail Summit | Dubai | March 13-14
At first, it seemed odd to me to goo to Dubai for a retail event, but hey – if Tommi Hilfiger himself is a keynote speaker, it’s probably a great event! I was even invited to attend but from personal reasons couldn’t make it this year, I know a few members from the community went so will gather their feedback for next year!
ShopTalk | Las Vegas, US | March 26-29
ShopTalk is by far the best event for retail innovation. They are awesome at content curation and while it attracts a lot of relevant people, it’s still not as big as NRF so tends to feel a bit less overwhelming.
Retail Week Live | London, UK | March 28-29 (Tech & Digital section)
One of the biggest retail events in London, produced by Retail Week which also publishes one of the most popular retail publications. I’ve been a speaker at this event in the past, it’s quite big, and has many different sessions all happening at the same time. If UK is your target market, I’d recommend checking it out.
Re:Tech Disrupt | Tel Aviv, Israel | April 15-17, 2024
Re:Tech Disrupt is our own Retail Innovation event highlighting Israel’s best technologies and developments in the retail tech space. It is the biggest retail innovation event in Israel which took place in 2017 and 2018 and took a little break during Covid, coming back in full force in 2024.
Join 250+ tech startups and 60+ speakers from companies such as Walmart, Carrefour, Rewe, Triumph, Ocado, Lands End, Stanely Black and Decker, Lego and others – if you’d like to get involved get in touch.
Retail Technology Show | London, UK | April 26-27
The Retail Technology Show also features an extensive conference program, with keynote speakers and panel discussions covering a wide range of topics that are relevant to the retail industry. I haven’t been yet, but looks like a great event, definitely on the list! If you are looking for innovation, check out Baringa’s startup safari for the top new tech startups.
World Retail Congress | Barcelona, Spain | April 25-27
They say it’s one of the best events, haven’t had the pleasure of attending yet. One of the highlights of the World Retail Congress is the keynote speakers, who are leaders in their respective fields and have a wealth of experience and knowledge to share. Additionally, the conference offers a variety of panel discussions, workshops, and networking opportunities.
EuroSys | Rome, Italy | May 8-12
The EuroSys conference is a premier event for computer systems researchers, practitioners, and engineers. It is held annually in various European cities and brings together leading experts to present and discuss the latest advances in computer systems research and technology.
ShopTalk Europe | Barcelona, Spain | May 9-11
The little sister of ShopTalk. In the past, the event was hosted in London but has now moved to the amazing Barcelona. Although there is some attendance from the US as well, this conference is most relevant to those targeting the European market. I will be a speaker for the first time this year, and really excited!
Retail Asia Expo | Hong Kong | May 10-12
Retail Asia Expo is an annual trade fair held in Hong Kong that brings together retailers, manufacturers, and other industry professionals from around the world. The expo features a wide range of products and services, including point-of-sale systems, retail design and visual merchandising, in-store marketing and promotions, and more.
Seamless Middle East | Dubai | May 23-24
A global 2-day conference with over 500 speakers covering the latest trends, market disruptors and technologies shaping the payments, fintech, retail, digital, logisitcs and e-commerce world. Lots of networking opportunities including a dedicated networking lounge, guest buyer program and networking app. This event is part of a series of events with the European event taking place 18-19 of October in Berlin.
Retail Innovation Conference | Chicago, US | June 13-15
The Retail Innovation Conference & Expo is an annual event for leading retailers, industry experts, and tech companies to discuss the latest trends, challenges, and opportunities in the retail industry.
CommerceNext | NYC, US | June 20-21
An event hosted by the great CommerceNext community. I’m a big fan of their webinars, and pretty sure the live event is just as great of not event better.
Retail Fest UK | Oakly Court, UK | June 20
This looks like an especially fun event, with outdoor activities, roundtable discussions and lots of networking opportunities, plus a super special location just outside of London. Definitely on my wish list for next year!
NRF Nexus | California, US | July 10-12
Looks like a smaller meetup hosted by NRF, should be a great networking opportunity.
The Lead Innovation Summit | NYC, US | July 12-13
This is my new favorite event. Heard great things from friends who attended last year, and this year I was invited as a speaker – can’t wait! It’s a smaller event, around 3,000 people, taking place in NYC, say no more – you had me at Hello. But seriously, D2C is the next thing for smaller and bigger brands alike, and this event is the leading one in the space. There is a 20% discount for Re:Tech members attending or sponsoring – reach out for more information.
eTail East | Boston, US | August 14-16
Etail has events all over the works – eTail west in Palm Springs, eTail UK and eTail Toronto and other events such as Future of Stores in Miami – I never attended, but seems worth checking out.
GroceryShop | Las Vegas, US | September 18-21
Same as ShopTalk, but focused on food retailers and CPGs. Heard great things, for me going all the way to Vegas twice in one year is too much! But if food retail is your thing, this is definitely the top event,
The SKU: Retail Brew Summit | NYC, US | October 25
This is a smaller event in NYC, our intern Raya Shamilov (who also helped with writing this post!) attended last year and really enjoyed it.
Attendees of The SKU learned about the best practices for managing and marketing their brands and products. They had the opportunity to network with other industry professionals, sharing ideas and strategies for success. The summit also featured a variety of exhibitors showcasing the latest products and services available to retailers and manufacturers.
RIC Annual Event | Netanya, Israel | October 2023
Another important event in Israel is Retail Innovations Club’s annual event, taking place in beautiful beach city Netanya, featuring international guests and local startup companies.