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NACDS Total Store Expo is ‘changing’

Welcome to the 2018 NACDS Total Store Expo! This year’s event will be unlike anything else before it, because that is the nature of the transformation in which the industry is engaged.

You will see the scope and magnitude of change in the content of each and every meeting between retailers and suppliers, as well as in the nature of the official conference programming.

As far as the business meetings go, the conversations during Meet the Market and in the Exhibit Hall will surely prove fascinating. Name me a company that is not focused on assuring that its own transformation meets or exceeds the demands of transformation in the marketplace and in consumers’ expectations. Name me a company that is not looking to its business partners for collaborative approaches to this transformation.

The unique advantage of NACDS Total Store Expo is that it fosters a total-store, cross-functional and collaborative approach, and the companies that use the conference in that way will find it to be a highly effective agent of change. This is the right time and the right place to make full use of the opportunities presented by this conference.

Companies also will find inspiration and insights throughout the NACDS Total Store Expo’s scheduled events. The evolution of the “Meet the Industry” feature — previously the “Meet the Retailer” feature — will present intelligence that is genuinely worthy of being called “cutting edge.” Companies of all types will find value in the “Meet the Industry” programming.

The Insight Sessions have the hottest topics throughout the industry covered — in areas including consumer goods, pharmacy, health and wellness, as well as technological applications related to all of these areas. Special programming, including the Supply Chain Summit and the retailer-specific sessions, such as the NACDS Institute and the Compliance Roundtable, will address current challenges and opportunities head-on.

The Exhibit Hall — including each and every display, the Vision 2029 Pavilion and the Product Showcase — will be worthy of thorough investigation.

NACDS Total Store Expo also will feature the latest on pressing public policy issues on which the association is engaged aggressively and proactively. The NACDS Access Agenda will be in focus, including the aspects that deal with preserving patients’ access to care, enhancing access to newer services, and working as partners for stronger and safer communities. That means the latest on direct-and-indirect remuneration fees; appropriate pharmacy reimbursement; scope-of-practice and scope-of-business issues; pharmacy as part of the solution to the opioid abuse epidemic; and more.

In addition to the pharmacy and health and wellness policy issues at the core of NACDS’ advocacy, NACDS also will be leveraging NACDS Total Store Expo as an opportunity to lend the industry’s voice to the effort to avert a trade war that results from tariffs and retaliatory actions by our nation’s trading partners.

NACDS Total Store Expo will be full of change in 2018, because — just as was the case when it debuted in 2013 — it is a reflection of the industry. We all look forward to seeing the transformation that it empowers at this unique moment in time.

Steve Anderson is president and CEO of the National Association of Chain Drug Stores.
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