WSTA Annual Conference 2015 Panel Discussion

Brand "Passion" at this year's WSTA Annual Conference

THE WSTA Annual Conference was buzzing with brand “passion” after an absorbing debate on keeping customers loyal.

Over 170 guests turned out to take part in the conference themed - ‘Loyalty and how to inspire it’.

The afternoon kicked off with WSTA Chief Executive Miles Beale rallying the troops in his speech highlighting the industry’s recent achievements, including duty cuts, surges in sales of English sparkling wine and gin and our CSR agenda.

He was followed by entrepreneur, adventurer and former international cricketer, Kevin Gaskell, who gave an awe inspiring speech on brand loyalty.

 Kevin Gaskell, WSTA Annual Conference 2015

Kevin Gaskell, WSTA Annual Conference 2015

Kevin told guests “brands need to take away their limitations and realise their potential.”

Using his experiences running both Porsche and BMW he spoke enthusiastically about the need for “passion at the heart of every brand” and encouraged the audience to “engage with people to share this dream”.

Alex Forrest, broadcaster and former Political Correspondent for ITV News hosted a fascinating panel discussion with leading figures in the world of business and wine.

Offering their experience and advice on the topic of brand loyalty were Karen Jones CBE, founder and chairman of Food & Fuel Ltd, non-Executive Director of ASOS Plc and founder of Café Rouge, Jon Forysyth Founder and Chief Communication Strategy Officer at adam&eveDDB best known for their John Lewis ads, Sam Linter MD and Master Winemaker, Bolney Wine Estate and Kristof de Wulf, Co-founder and CEO of Insites Consulting.

The pearls of wisdom came thick and fast from the super achievers. 

Jon told the audience brands need to be “quick on their feet” and “brave”.

Panel Discussion, WSTA Annual Conference 2015

Panel Discussion, WSTA Annual Conference 2015, from Left: Karen Jones, Jon Forsyth, Karen Linter, Krisof de Wulf

Karen encouraged members to “invest in an emotional connection”.

Sam revealed how Bolney “built loyalty by being local and effectively telling our story”.

And Kristof told guests to get ready for “the internet of things” calling it “the next big thing” which will hit “hard and fast”.

WSTA Chairman and Managing Director of Pernod Ricard UK, Denis O’Flynn, who chaired the conference, brought the lively panel discussion to a close.

Product Showcase, WSTA Annual Conference 2015


Tasting at the Showcase, WSTA Annual Conference 2015

Guests then moved into the magnificent Great Hall at One Great George Street in Westminster, and tasted a wide selection of wines and spirits in the product showcase.

A big thank you to JF Hillebrand for sponsoring our event. 
We hope you enjoyed the WSTA’s 2015 annual conference as much as we did. We would love to hear YOUR feedback on the event. 

Email us at [email protected]

Tweet us on @wstauk #wstaAC

Want to know more? Ask Jessica Norman
Jessica Norman

Jessica Norman - Head of Membership & Events

Jessica is responsible for all internal and external WSTA events and the day-to-day operations of the WSTA. Her role includes liaising and coordinating suppliers, inhouse design, inventory, and IT.

Email: [email protected]
Telephone: 020 7089 3884

Twitter @wstauk

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