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Keynote Speakers

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TUESDAY, JAN. 25 / 9:00 AM – 10:15 AM


Navigating What’s Next: Insights for Shaping the Future and Driving Performance in the New World of Work

As we meet 2022, leaders are making big bets on what’s next for the pet industry and the world at large. What will work look like? Where will it take place? How will we best serve and support employees and customers? Navigating this defining moment will require a new set of leadership skills and competencies to drive innovation, elevate performance and shape outcomes.

Seth Mattison, an internationally recognized thought leader on workforce change and innovation, will share insights on the biggest trends impacting organizational performance and designing work for the year ahead. Mattison helps high-performing leaders through transformation with strategies that are rooted in research and bolstered by time. Armed with actionable insights, participants will be primed to elevate their influence, fortify their perseverance and spot the trends of 2022 to gain first-mover advantage.

Attendees will gain:

  • Insights on the trends shaping the future of work.
  • Strategies to design compelling employee experiences for both in person and remote.
  • Hybrid workplace strategies that meet both talent and business needs.
  • A framework for experimentation in an era of transformation.
  • Perspective on the leadership skills and competencies of the future.

TUESDAY, JAN. 25 / 11:15 AM – 12:15 PM


Where Will the Pets Come From?

Mike Bober, President & CEO, PIJAC; Steven Feldman, President, HABRI; Aimee Gilbreath, President, PetSmart Charities; Susanne Kogut, President, Petco Love

During the shutdown, both new and existing pet owners enjoyed the benefits of the human-animal bond while helping to reduce shelter and rescue populations. Demand has increased for all kinds of companion animals, including fish, birds, reptiles and small mammals. At the same time, new restrictions have been proposed on their trade and transportation in an attempt to prevent the spread of zoonotic diseases.

What does this mean for the availability of responsibly bred and collected animals? Where are pet owners finding their pets today and how will that change in the future? And what can we do to ensure the health and well-being of pets, pet owners and all of us who care for them? This must-see presentation will discuss how we can maintain a safe and sustainable pet supply.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 26 / 9:00 AM – 10:00 AM


Transforming Multi-Generational Teams in a Post-COVID World

The global pandemic has made it increasingly necessary to separate generational myths from truths. Today’s workforce spans five generations, who have experienced the pandemic in different ways. Younger generations are beginning their careers during one of the largest global upheavals of all time, while workers nearing retirement must learn how to conduct business in an increasingly digital environment. It can be a struggle to find the right balance between their sometimes conflicting needs.

Generational studies expert, author and humorist Meagan Johnson will teach you how to build a culture of multi-generational collaboration. Through a combination of client interviews, research and video, you will learn:

  • The best ways to assist each generation post-pandemic.
  • How to create generational inclusivity.
  • Common denominators across the generations.
  • How Generational insensitivity can impact your organization.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 26 / 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM


Navigating Shifts: Business Cycle – Inflation – Labor

The economy is shifting gears for 2022 and 2023. Pressures on the economy and in the marketplace are shaping up to provide some breathing room to get our business processes in order before the next round of inflation hits and the labor market gets even tighter. ITR Economics CEO Brian Beaulieu returns to The Summit stage to look at how long the economy’s ascent will continue, as well as what sort of inflation and labor issues we will have to contend with.

Many say that his talks alone are worth The Summit’s price of admission. One of the most accurate economic forecasters in the U.S., Beaulieu has helped us manage for growth in uncertain economies for the past several years. Don’t miss this chance to gain a better understanding what’s in store for the future and receive professional advice to help you cope.

Brian Beaulieu has served as CEO and Chief Economist of ITR Economics™ since 1987. As a speaker and a consultant, Brian has provided valuable and practical advice to companies in need of domestic and global perspectives to increase profits through business cycle trend analysis, forecasting, and effective planning. Brian has shared his expertise through various media outlets, including: USA Today, Knight Ridder, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, The Washington Post, Kudlow and Friends, First on Fox, Canadian television, and numerous other outlets.

Breakout Sessions

TUESDAY, JAN. 25 / 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM

Pet Market Outlook: Tracking Omnimarket Growth Momentum

David Sprinkle, Packaged Facts 

This presentation by Packaged Facts research director David Sprinkle brings you up to date on COVID-era trends and will discuss various signals indicating that pet industry growth is not mainly in our rear-view mirror. Trends include:

  • Home-centricity and pet-centricity
  • Pet populations
  • Pet owner demographics
  • Pet product retail and e-trends
  • Sustainability and ethical concerns 

In addition, from Packaged Facts’  “omnimarket” perspective, Sprinkle will review the strategic and growth implications of expanding convergence zones between products and services — medical and non-medical, food and non-food — across the overall pet industry.

David Sprinkle is the research director at Packaged Facts, which produces a leading line of syndicated research
reports on U.S. consumer markets and trends.

TUESDAY, JAN. 25 / 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM

The Evolution of Brand Protection in the Pet Industry: MAPP and Beyond

Ron Solomon, MAPP Trap 

In the first six months of 2021, over 11,000 e-commerce retailers violated the MAP polices of over 50 APPA pet vendors. Sadly, most of the vendors didn’t know how the majority of those retailers had gotten their products! Since entering the pet industry in 2014, MAPP Trap has helped hundreds of brands to enforce their MAP policies. But as e-commerce has evolved, new threats to brand equity and profitability have emerged. During this informative session, MAPP Trap CEO Ron Solomon will reveal how brands are adopting new strategies and working together with other industry players to regain control. 

Flowing from the needs of his own successful toy business, Solomon founded MAPP Trap in 2012 in order to help companies protect their brands from the equity erosion caused by uncontrolled e-commerce. MAPP Trap is currently used by manufacturers in a range of industries spanning pet, gift, nutrition, beauty, outdoor, sporting goods and more.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 26 / 1:30 PM – 2:30 PM

It’s Not Them – It’s You. Reclaiming Your Consumer Mojo!

Michael Johnson, FINN Cady

Pet retail is a growing market, but the game is changing. Consumers are savvier than ever. What drove sales and loyalty yesterday won’t work tomorrow. Are you managing your business for mere survival, or do you have a sustainable strategy for future consumer swagger?

Join Michael Johnson, President of FINN CADY Strategy & Brand, for this essential discussion on crafting YOUR formidable pet consumer strategy. He will share specific insights and tactics that you can use to stand out in the marketplace.

Johnson is a key consumer insights and trends thought leader who regularly consults the pet industry. He serves on the Board of Directors of the World Pet Association and on the Board of Trustees of the Phoenix Zoo / Arizona Center for Nature Conservation.

WEDNESDAY, JAN. 26 / 3:00 PM – 4:00 PM

APPA National Pet Owners Survey: Generational Report – Volume 4 Debut!

Julie Springer, APPA Market Research Analyst

Get a first look at the newest volume of APPA’s Generational Report. Julie Springer will shed light on what makes the different generations tick when it comes to their pets and purchasing habits. It will take a topline look at pet ownership by generation including spending, attitudinal and pet product and service usage data.

Gen Z pet ownership is on the rise — see how this generation compares to their generational cohorts.  The presentation will also include a snapshot look at data from the 2021-2022 National Pet Owners Survey.

Julie Springer has been a key leader in the development and production of the APPA National Pet Owners Survey for the past 20 years. She began her work as Senior Project Director for Ipsos where she was the project leader for the APPA National Pet Owners Survey. In addition to APPA, her other clients have included consumer package goods and pharmaceutical companies.