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Key Themes from Vendavo’s 2022 Growth + Profitability Summit in Stockholm

June 8, 2022

From keynotes, breakout sessions, and panels, to dinner cruises and everything in between, Vendavo’s 2022 Growth + Profitability Summit had something for everyone. 

While zoom waves and at-home pet sightings are always enjoyable, it was so good to be back in-person for Vendavo’s bi-annual Growth + Profitability Summit in Stockholm. Our customer community event offered two packed days of keynotes, sessions, demos, UX labs, product discussions, and perhaps most importantly, networking between pricing and commercial experts.  

We welcomed speakers and customers to Stockholm to share their unique perspectives on pricing, selling, and commercial excellence. From keynotes that covered pricing sustainability, and the value of pricing, to in-depth and interactive discussions on eCommerce, customer insights, commercial excellence, and alignment with other teams, there was a myriad of pertinent topics. Throughout the conference, common threads began to weave through conversations and presentations.

Here are 5 key themes from this year’s summit:

1. In the face of volatility, agility is key 

Not surprisingly, addressing volatility and changing business environments was on everyone’s minds. Macro- and microeconomic factors are clearly pushing businesses to make fast decisions with little to no historical pretense, and many organizations are looking for guidance. Teams, including pricing groups, are expected to be more efficient, more agile, and leaner. Not only do individuals need to do more with less but they have more responsibility for their success and that of the corporation. If you missed the conference and you’re looking for some best practices for fostering agility to keep up with volatile market conditions, check out this guide to improving practices, analytics, and technology to deliver critical pricing agility.  

2. Pricers must communicate with the rest of the organization, frequently and consistently 

Pricers must handle numerous tasks and requests. While the ask for more headcount is an option, it is not always well received. Multiple panelists emphasized communication within the organization. In order to ensure success and efficiency, Kati Ilkka, Senior Pricing Manager at Huhtamaki noted, “Communication is always difficult because you can never have enough, but you need it to get influence and feedback.” 

Communication is always difficult because you can never have enough, but you need it to get influence and feedback.”

Kati illka, Senior pricing manager at huhtamaki

3. Sustainability 3.0 requires CEOs to champion change 

The external societal pressures on sustainability and the acceleration to digital regardless of industry drove many discussions as well. Yes, topics like sustainability and eCommerce have been around for more than 10 years, but the gravity of solving challenges is now more apparent than ever. Dr. Larisa Kryachkova, Chief Human Rights Officer at the NGO slavefreetrade, provided some unique perspectives around the current state of sustainability. The future is Sustainability 3.0 and now more than ever, CEOs must get involved. But there is a long way to go before we get there. In 2020, only 1-2% of all CEOs were even moving their companies toward sustainability.

Sustainability is all about us. If we do not change, nothing will change.”

Dr. larisa kyrachkova, Chief Human Rights officer at the ngo slavefreetrade

4. Creating a shared pricing vision relies on making the complex simple 

Summit attendees discussed and compared notes on their roles. A consensus seemed to be that the role of pricing is extremely complex compared to other roles in the organization. When others find the role of pricing and commercial excellence to be convoluted, it becomes that much harder to communicate and celebrate wins. Stakeholders want the price and only the price, without dependencies or gray areas. Taking complex topics and situations and being able to reorganize them into something more simplistic, that others understand, is key going forward. One way to resolve this is to focus on your culture and define a shared vision. Koen Hoogstoel, Products Global Digital Strategy Manager at Yokogawa, discussed culture setting. Not only does Yokogawa employ people from across the globe, Koen’s work with global pricing also proves that when different regions come together, it tends to work better when both sides have some alignment and work toward a similar vision or set of objectives. 

5. It’s time for pricing to take a seat at the leadership table 

Overall, there’s a call for ongoing leadership of pricing teams. It’s important for pricers to have and deliver the right information and data for the right teams – different parts of the business are going to want to see different KPIs and be ready for them. It is your time to drive decisions. Pricing and commercial teams are the best suited to create, manage, maintain, and prove a company’s pricing strategy.  

We are more excited than ever before to continue the ongoing pursuit of growth, profitability, and commercial excellence with our customer community. 

We’ll leave you with one compelling lesson learned during Growth and Profitability Summit 2022. In professional meetings in Indonesia, there are no definitive yes/no answers. Instead they use a concept called belum which means not yet. In other words, it’s a journey, it’s a continuum. Belum is a good reminder that while important decisions must be made, there is always room for adaptations and deviations to improve upon the journey.

Our community is core to Vendavo and drives our approach to our solutions and vision. Thank you to all those who attended Growth + Profitability in Stockholm this year. We offer our community two opportunities to join us for dynamic events across the world. Join us for the next Growth + Profitability Summit that will take place in Denver, CO from September 12 – 13, 2022.