Winning In A Technology Retail Landscape:
And Delighting Readers Along The Way
Wednesday, April 20th, 2016
Speakers: Mike Ward CEO and Prasad Gopalkrishnan CMO of ThriftBooks.com
5:30--8:30 Dinner Event
Seattle Yacht Club
ThriftBooks.com is one of the world’s largest books retailers you might never have heard about. Why? ThriftBooks.com built its technology around being able to source, rate, shelve, ship, and track used books, one of two high-growth pockets in the books retail landscape. Now as the dominant player in that space, ThriftBooks.com is turning its proprietary capability against the wide open books landscape, including New Books and new media.
In this talk, we look to share some of the founding principles, applicable across retail and manufacturer catalogs and, dually based on tech and customer-centricity. We discuss how we manage inventory across multiple editions and formats on millions of titles and over 20M price changes a day on over a hundred marketplaces including the ThriftBooks.com vertical. We conclude with a look forward to how as a high-growth retailer, we leverage technology to tap category adjacencies and continue to delight existing readers while step-changing new reader acquisition.
The speakers, Mike Ward CEO and Prasad Gopalkrishnan CMO, will also share their personal journeys as technology and business leaders and how they earned their seats at the executive table.
Mike Ward has over 16 years’ experience building web and e-commerce solutions and growing online businesses. He joined Thrift Books in 2007 as the Chief Information Officer, overseeing Development and IT during its high-growth years. In 2013 he took over as President of Thrift Books and has grown the company to annual sales of $90 Million and over 600 employees in 10 states. His background as a technologist and engineer have been essential in leading an e-commerce company in the quickly changing digital retail industry.
Prior to joining Thrift Books, Mike Ward led the Development team at Wasatch Advisors in the financial services industry. He has also worked as Webmaster for several Silicon Valley and Fortune 500 companies. Mike has been instrumental in getting several high tech start-up companies off the ground and has brought both IT leadership and vision to help these small companies achieve quick and sustained growth. He is passionate about leadership, business, technology and how to use it as leverage for innovation and growth.
Prasad Gopalkrishnan has over 13 years of marketing and direct general management experience in the consumer goods and ecommerce industries. Most recently he founded and led a nutrition startup past capital raise. Prior to this, he was the Head of Marketing and Marketplace on Kitchen and Dining Retail at Amazon.com, in addition to managing the standalone product, the Amazon Wedding Registry. Prior to Amazon.com, Mr. Gopalkrishnan was Brand Manager at Proctor and Gamble (P&G) at their world headquarters in Cincinnati for a decade. He managed and launched large and small brands in Home, Health and Beauty, including Secret, Old Spice, Gillette, NyQuil & DayQuil, after two years leading manufacturing plant startups and R&D product development teams at P&G.
Mr. Gopalkrishnan holds an MBA from the Booth School of Business, University of Chicago and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from Case, Cleveland, OH.
Thank you to our April Dinner Sponsor: Equinix