Gamechangerz in Retail – Human vs Tech

On Jan. 31, at Meta’s headquarters in Amsterdam, we organized the first edition of GCIR. The theme of this one was Human vs Tech. After several successful Gamechangerz in Food editions, we decided to provide a personal event for our Retail and Wholesale customers and associates as well.

In this first edition, we zoomed in especially on how the human and the technological together can create unprecedented opportunities for retail and wholesale organizations. It was an inspiring day, sharing new Tech insights and developments, but more importantly looking at how they can help and support the customer and employee. Inspiring contributions were provided by GfK, Ikea, Just Eat / Takeaway, Meta (Facebook, Threads, Instagram and WhatsApp) and organizer Gwynt itself.

Relevance to customer and employee is becoming increasingly important, while margin pressure is increasing and labor shortages are the order of the day. Digital tools help to work more efficiently and give the customer an optimal experience.This is changing the role of the employee, creating a new way of thinking and organizing. Through this meeting boden we had the opportunity to take a break from day-to-day operations and learn from each other from real-life experience. This was eand good reason voor us to this first edition of Gamechangerz at Retail organizing.

Important questions we wanted answers to:

  • Where is the employee’s added value in the near future? How do consumers view this?
  • What elements within the Retail landscape will Tech take over or support?
  • In what ways can new Tech, such as genAI, best be deployed?

Lenneke Schils – Global Insights Director GfK

Bring emotion back into the shopper journey. Don’t just focus on pure conversion and automation. Shoppers want solutions but not always fully automated ones. Focus on balancing, for example, AI solutions and the necessary dopamine that optimizes shopper loyalty.

Norbert Roelofs & Christian Markwat – Country Service Experience Leader IKEA & E-Commerce lead NL
Searching every day for the balance between optimizing and personalizing. The role of the employee is crucial in an IKEA experience. Deploy digitalization where it really only adds value to the customer experience. Making all digital channels part of shared KPIs is necessary for success.

Robert Jan Koopman – Global Head of Grocery & Convenience Just Eat / Takeaway
Technology is deployed in the best interest of JET customers to optimize reach, streamline processes [met klanten] and support employees. JET is a Tech organization at heart but the employee is critical to the all-important consumer experience.

Harmjan Oldebeuving – Industry Lead Retail & eCommerce Meta
Conversational Commerce is the big driver for retailers and manufacturers in the coming years to professionalize, scale and personalize interactions with consumers. The Netherlands is not a forerunner in this area, but once legislation provides more opportunities we can quickly catch up with countries such as India and Brazil who are already very far along in this field.

Danny Groenenboom – Business Principal Retail, Wholesale & Digital Gwynt
Successful deployment of new Tech requires optimal cooperation between components Technology, Capabilities and the Marketplace. Technology is evolving faster than ever in advance. Large companies committed to embracing new Tech and who have the right capabilities develop take a big almost unfair lead over the parties that do not now. The market as being the consumer is ready as long as the solutions offered provide convenience and/or benefit. Virtually all roles within a company can become “redundant,” but the difference is in the role of the employee. In the store, in logistics and at headquarters. Companies that really want and need to make a difference in the coming years need to invest now.

Between presentations, pizzas were delivered by [JET] . Afterwards, there was time and space for a drink and a afterglow. Herein there was the opportunity to share all the impressions with each other and get further acquainted with all those present.

Main conclusion:

From Human vs Tech it becomes Human & Tech, make sure digitalization becomes an integral part of your business strategy, both human and technology offer a lot of value to your customer if used correctly.

Did you know:

  • Gwynt will regularly organize inspiring Gamechangerz events for its Retail & Wholesale associates and customers
  • Gwynt chairs the 2024 Shopping Tomorrow expert group “genAI as a growth engine for Retail & Wholesale
  • We would be happy to come by for a no-obligation consultation

If you weren’t there and are curious about the
of the event please feel free to send us a message at

or contact us at
Danny Groenenboom
Daan Mestrum
or Roland Mulder