MAPIC 2021 official launch: The journey to Cannes starts here

Showcasing the retail mix, leisure and food and beverage, the digital MAPIC 2021 official launch reflected the diversity of the upcoming Cannes event, as four keynote speakers discussed the future of retail and lifestyle destinations.

MAPIC 2021 officially launched with a special digital event on 3 June, as a number of major players from retail, leisure and food & beverage (F&B) came together to discuss future prospects for the industry as Europe gradually re-emerges from lockdown.

This online event also provided a unique and exclusive opportunity to discover what will be showcased at MAPIC 2021, which takes place in Cannes, France from 30 November to 2 December this year, after being held digitally alongside LeisurUp in 2020.

Speakers at a packed event included Samantha Etienne, CEO, Sephora Collection, Sephora; Karl Wambach, executive vice president Europe, Brookfield Properties Germany; Jonathan Doughty, global head of foodservice, leisure and placemaking, ECE Projektmanagement; Nicolas De Villiers, president, Grand Parc Du Puy Du Fou; plus, introducing them – Charles Read, managing director, Blooloop; Mimosa Spencer, senior business news editor, Women’s Wear Daily; moderator Dan Innes, founder, Innesco; and MAPIC director Nathalie Depetro.

The digital event provided a first opportunity to discuss the annual show’s overall theme for 2021 of People and Places: A New Chapter, and to examine the key components of the event in Cannes, which will bring together MAPIC, LeisurUp and The Happetite. In addition, a series of digital events will take place between now and Cannes, providing valuable insight on a range of topics and trends.

MAPIC director Nathalie Depetro opened up the digital event by embracing the reopening of business, which she said “brings a sense of optimism” as she discussed the changes caused across the retail, leisure and F&B industries by the Covid pandemic. “We have seen a huge acceleration in online, retail mixes, the need for better in-store experiences,” she said. “That will be reflected at MAPIC. It is more than a shopping mall event.”

To preview some of the companies and people who will feature in Cannes, the digital event welcomed three key presentations, starting with Samantha Etienne, CEO, Sephora Collection, Sephora, who discussed the positioning of the beauty retailer and who stressed the importance of themes such as the environment, wellness and authenticity for the business. Sephora Collection is positioned as an affordable brand and forms an important pillar in Sephora’s growth strategy.

Sephora has a well-developed online presence and a large store estate and Etienne said that bringing these channels together is key to Sephora’s ongoing plans: “I think what will be super-important for brands is really to think omni-channel. We have to be very consistent across their journey in terms of everything, images, messages, services,” she said. “For example, a service that was just so important for the customer because it was very convenient for the customers is click and collect.”

Nicolas De Villiers, president, Grand Parc Du Puy Du Fou, introduced his leisure attraction business, which originated in France but has expanded to locations in Spain and has upcoming projects in China, with each adapted and personalised for its host place.

De Villiers said that searching for a location – chosen for a mix of reasons including the local history and back-story of a potential site – is about much more than simply the catchment and involves careful consideration.

“For us two things are very important in choosing the place and the location of the project. Authenticity, which means the project has got roots. And beauty of course. Because it has to be very beautiful,” he said. “This is the reason for you coming to a beautiful project, you visit a beautiful show, because of beauty and because of authenticity.”

The final presentation came from Karl Wambach, executive vice president Europe, Brookfield Properties Germany, and Jonathan Doughty, global head of foodservice, leisure and placemaking, ECE Projektmanagement, as they concluded the hour-long event by outlining plans for Potzdamer Platz, Berlin, which is undergoing a major and extensive refurbishment as a mixed use location.

“We basically identified an opportunity to recreate a public high street. Bring the public realm into the scheme, you see here the pavements [which flow form the exterior into the scheme]. Basically bringing the materials from the public realm into it. And de-malling the mall,” said Wambach. “Creating six individual, unique buildings, with their own architecture. Basically anchored by their own, strong anchors.”

Potzdamer Platz will bring a number of retail, leisure and F&B first to Berlin and Doughty was keen to point out that if a scheme is created and developed to a high quality then it can bring people in to work, shop, eat and enjoy the leisure, both during the working week and then to return at the weekends.

Reflecting on the three presentations and the upcoming digital and physical events being held for MAPIC, LeisurUp and The Happetite, Depetro concluded: “This illustrates to me the evolution of the industry and that is going to be showcased at MAPIC.” MAPIC, LeisurUp and The Happetite will be held together at the Palais des Festivals, Cannes, France from 30 November to 2 December.

Watch the session in full, click on the image below:

MAPIC Digital Launch


About Author

Mark Faithfull is Editor of the MAPIC Preview and News Magazines, as well as Editor of online publication and analysis specialist Retail Property Analyst.

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