The speaker lineup for our Dec. 7 virtual Future Smarts conference is set. And it’s top-notch.
We’ve recently confirmed our final addition, Henrik Jelert, who is EVP for ReadyRefresh at Nestle Waters North America. This direct-to-consumer business has navigated higher demand for at- home beverage delivery and a slow-down in workplace consumption during the COVID-19 crisis. He and I will discuss challenges and opportunities, while looking ahead to what comes after the pandemic.
We’ll also bring Molson Coors Beverage into the Future Smarts fold for the first time. The brewer is moving aggressively into ready-to-drink non-alcoholic categories including bottled water and probiotic seltzers. Marlon Hernandez, who leads non-alcoholic beverages in the Americas, will elaborate on his company's strategy to break down the wall between beer and everything else.
There is plenty more. Coca-Cola COO Brian Smith will discuss his extensive work to shape Coca-Cola’s global leadership structure for the future. What will that mean for one of the most important beverage companies in the world, and how has the COVID-19 pandemic shaped that process?
Jim Andrew, PepsiCo’s EVP of beyond the bottle and chief sustainability officer, will talk about balancing an important packaged beverage portfolio with a mission to reduce plastic waste using brands such as SodaStream.
Keurig Dr Pepper’s Andrew Springate, whose CMO role has expanded to include the company’s beverage concentrates business, will discuss the role that marketing will play as the company seeks to put coffee and cold beverages in the hands of consumers no matter where they shop.
From the world of distribution, we’ll bring you a conversation with John Sherman, CEO of Coca-Cola United, which is Coke’s third largest US bottler. He and United are on a mission to create one of the most efficient DSD systems in the country, all with the help of some of the newest automation available. He also has a ground level view of the consumer market, especially in the era of COVID-19.
Our always popular analyst panel will include two of the foremost Wall Street experts on beverages. Future Smarts regular Bonnie Herzog, known in part for her deep-dive surveys with US convenience store operators, appears for the first time since beginning her current role analyzing beverage stocks at Goldman Sachs. And Nik Modi, who brings a futurist’s mindset to his deeply data-driven analysis, will join me from RBC Capital Markets for a wide-ranging review of the day’s most pressing industry topics.
Future Smarts is never complete without the voices of cutting-edge innovators capitalizing on the newest product and consumer trends. This year, I’ll talk to Jim DeCicco, co-founder and CEO of Kitu Super Coffee, which signed a critical distribution agreement this year with Anheuser-Busch. And Yanni Hufnagel, founder and CEO of Lemon Perfect, will join the discussion fresh off an important distribution deal with New York-based rainmaker Big Geyser.
To top it all off, we’ll spend a few minutes with Future Smarts Headline Sponsor PureCircle. CEO Tony DeLio took the helm of the stevia producer following the company’s sale this year to global ingredient company Ingredion. He and I will discuss urgent developments in the natural sweetener market.
Finally, we'll announce our 2020 Beverage Digest Awards winners, which will give attendees a chance to see a range of innovation in 11 categories including Best Functional Drink, Best Hard Seltzer, Best CBD/Hemp Drink, and Best Technology.
This insights-driven conference will be held live online on Dec. 7 from 11a to 6p. The 30-min sessions are designed to be fast-paced, with a chance for attendees to participate with questions. The day will include networking as well by way of our conference platform.
You won’t want to miss this program. Book your slot now.
Can’t wait to see you.
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