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RetailVision Takes On Some Latin Flavor

RetailVision is unveiling a Latin American program this week, when its four-day meeting at the Manchester Grand Hyatt here brings together more than 40 key Latin American-based retail chains with some 200 retailers and 185 vendors from “north of the border” for a variety of business programs and entertainment sidelights.

RetailVision Fall 2004, Sept. 7-10, is highlighting retailers from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Mexico, Peru and Venezuela in what it calls RetailVision Latin America, a new standalone event that features its own RetailVision specialties — Boardroom Appointments, One-on-Ones and a networking program.

For vendors, the Latin America endeavor is an opportunity to do business with two major markets — North America and South America — without incurring the cost and logistical challenges of exhibiting overseas, said managers of this Gartner-produced event.

Boardrooms are guaranteed private appointments that allow vendors uninterrupted access to a guaranteed audience of eight to 10 key retailer decision-makers, and also give retailers the opportunity to review the latest vendor products, services and technologies.

One-on-Ones are meetings at RetailVision’s The Meeting Place, where event participants come together each day to discuss new technology products, service programs and channel partnerships.

Another new focal point at the bi-annual RetailVision this week is the addition of a special preview session for The Meeting Place. Here, vendors will set up their booths prior to 2 p.m. on opening day tomorrow, and will hold a gathering for retailers to “browse” and meet vendor representatives from 2:30 p.m. until 6 p.m. This early-bird opportunity should help retailers discover new and unfamiliar companies, as well as fill any openings in their One-on-Ones and executive-level audience.

This year’s Welcome Reception, tomorrow at 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., will feature an exotic zoo theme. In fact, animals from the world-famous San Diego Zoo will be on hand to make the zoo theme come to life, said RetailVision.

In addition to its zoo, San Diego is one of the nation’s great naval seaports, and RetailVision’s gala awards dinner Thursday will take place aboard the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Midway (retired), within easy walking distance from the Manchester Grand Hyatt.

Cocktails will be served at 7 p.m. on the Midway’s flight deck, and the dinner and awards will follow on the hanger deck. After the ceremonies, RetailVision participants will view a spectacular fireworks display from the flight deck, and then they can return to the hanger deck for the Ingram Micro late night party from 9:30 p.m. until midnight.

Among the Latin American retailers coming to RetailVision from Mexico are: OfficeMax, 26 to 50 stores, $100+ million revenue; Grupo Gigante, 100+ stores, $100 million; Sears de Mexico, 26 to 50 stores, $100+ million; Carrefour, 26 to 50 stores, $100+ million; and MAPS, one to 10 stores, $51 million to $100 million.

Coming from Argentina are: OfficeNet, a catalog/Internet retailer, $12 million to $35 million revenue; Stylus, one to 10 stores, $26 million to $50 million; Compumundo/Garbarino, 50 to 100 stores, $51 million to $100 million; and Intcomex Argentina, one to 10 stores, $26 million to $50 million.

From Brazil are: Submarino, an online merchant doing $51 million to $100 million revenue; Shoptime, an e-tailer doing $11 million to $25 million; and OPECO, a distributor/online, doing $11 million to $25 million.

Chile, Peru and Venezuela will have a least one retailer on hand each. These include Almacenes Paris, an 11- to 25-store Chilean chain with $26 million to $50 million revenue; Grupo Del Tron, from Peru, 1-10 stores, $50 million to $100 million; and Venezuela’s Compumall, 1-10 stores, $11 million to $25 million.