IEDC Conference

“It’s a Need, Not a Want: The Importance of Retail in Economic Development”

Overview: Retail development does several things for a community: it keeps money local, contributes to the quality of life for residents, and helps create a healthy buzz of activity on main streets. However, it is also an industry that is extremely susceptible to greater forces in the economy and to consumers ever changing preferences. Given recent news of several major retailers closing stores around the US, this session will dive into the trends in retail development and how economic developers can keep the retail scene healthy in their communities.

What you’ll learn:

  • Trends in retail including online shopping and technology to enhance the shopping experience
  • Challenges for retail in communities ranging from rural towns to big cities
  • Helping retail establishments contribute to a lively social scene on the Main Streets and downtown’s

Time: 1:45 PM – 3:15 PM

Moderator: Danny Games, CEcD, Executive Vice President, Global Business, Arkansas Economic Development Commission, Little Rock, AR

Program Speakers: 

Jason Claunch,
Principal and CEO of Catalyst

Program Speakers: 

Hrishue Mahalaha,
Senior Partner,Innovation Economy Partners

Program Speakers: 

Rose Washington,
Executive Director of Tulsa Economic Development Corporation