Keynote presentation by Thierry Bransi, Director of Commercial Insights and Planning at Metro Richelieu Inc. #MRIA16 #NewMR 

Live note taking at the #MRIA16 national conference in Montreal. Any errors or bad jokes are my own.

  • There are a lot of pessimistic people in our industry, research won’t be around in fifteen years, another said researchers only end there by default, research isn’t well positioned for the future
  • Want to share my optimism
  • We start in sales, then go to marketing, then go to research to dictate products; this paradigm is disappearing, more and more people are arriving in research by choice [me!]
  • The research function is growing
  • Going from information collectors to actors within an organization
  • All the science in our industry is exciting
  • Background of Metro, the banner, the organization, Metro Inc, Metro Ontario
  • In 1947, retailers got together and changed name in 1956 to Metro, they have a long history
  • In 1992, acquired Stienberg, pivotal moment when new president arrived, Steinberg company was going bankrupt 
  • President weathered through crisis, market conditions were unfavourable, became profitable and made many acquisitions 
  • 3rd company in its sector, 65000 employees, 12.2 billion in sales
  • Possibly the best grocer in the world as stated by reviewers
  • New president reaffirmed the client focus
  • Suppliers collect information and do the analysis and they think the work ends there, but for us that is the beginning of the analysis stage
  • What do we do with so much data, consumer information is vague, ownership of information isn’t clear
  • Some data collection processes are becoming more popular, anyone can do research, there is automated research that happens without anyone asking for it, more people can do research
  • Traditionally analysis looked like investigation and telling a story, the best story became the king
  • But today, most intelligence has to do with merging information which is more democratic, everyone analyzes and generates insight
  • We’re dealing with a ten thousand piece puzzle now, so now we say our puzzle is sexier but that doesn’t always work
  • We used to wait beside the fax machine to get our sales numbers, but this old method balances thought and analysis; now we can throw piles of numbers on a page without thinking
  • Now we build 500 slides and then tell our story, maybe we need to rethink this
  • To have an impact, we need to develop a network

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