100% Global DTC, Cross-Border and International Ecommerce

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It is time to get back out there and enjoy what we all love- networking, learning and sharing with industry colleagues and new connections! So please join us at GELF LA 2022 on April 21st!

On Thursday April 21st, the Global Ecommerce Leaders Forum (GELF) community returns to West Hollywood for our 15th Forum. Make plans now to head to Los Angeles and join us at the Directors Guild of America (DGA) for another full day of global direct-to-consumer (DTC) and cross-border ecommerce!

After the roller coaster of 2020-21, GELF NYC ’21 made its successful return to in-person conferences on New York on September 28-29th 2021.  Prior to the pandemic, GELF LA 2020 was our most successful West Coast event ever – and after postponing GELF LA 2021 due to the pandemic, we cannot wait to kick off 2022 with our sixth GELF LA (which has been rescheduled from our original date, February 10th, 2022)

We look forward to diving deeper into the current state of global DTC commerce and re-examining why cross-border ecommerce is more important to a retail brand’s growth strategy than ever before.  Join us as we explore how global ecommerce leaders are bouncing back from the pandemic stronger than ever and why digital commerce continues to disrupt retail distribution globally.

GELF LA 2022 will bring together leaders from retailers and brands selling direct-to-consumer and through new and traditional retail partners.  Global consumer brands will join digital natives from the fashion and apparel world, health and beauty, consumer electronics and other leading verticals for a full day of education and sharing. Digital commerce innovators, cross-border ecommerce experts and global ecommerce thought leaders will debate what’s next for international retail expansion and where leaders’ priorities lie.

Get a jump on the 2022 holiday peak season by joining the fast-growing GELF community as we learn together, meet new friends and network throughout the day at the Director’s Guild of America Theater, 7920 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90046!

Are you a retail ecommerce leader interested in speaking at GELF LA 2022? If so please contact

GELF is a retailer-only, sponsor-only event. If you are an ecommerce platform or marketplace operator, software company, agency, data aggregator, logistics provider or other global ecommerce solution provider interested in sponsoring and attending GELF, please contact 

As always, GELF speakers will deliver an energetic and engaging combination of global ecommerce strategy and cross-border tactics and best practices.

  • One-to-One@GELF LA 2022 meetings will provide attendees with the opportunity to connect directly with global ecommerce experts to discuss how best to tackle their most pressing cross-border and global ecommerce challenges.


  • Looking for more structured networking & opportunities to learn from experts and industry peers? Executive Meetup Roundtables @GELF 2022 are back this year! The GELF team will connect peers and experts that want to share pressing questions, discuss best practices and learn more about what it takes to succeed in today’s dynamic world of global trade.

GELF succeeds when the community steps up and helps drive the conversation.  Let us know what topics you’d like to include in the program.

You can count on the following topics being part of the show:

  • Re-Prioritizing Market Entry. Whether you’re pursuing massive market opportunities in Greater China and SE Asia or appraising whether Mexico should be your “next big bet”, GELF will help you connect with leaders that have been there and done that. If you’re looking to ramp up sales in maturing markets in Europe and/or testing hot markets like the Middle East, GELF has you covered there too.


  • Going Direct-to-Consumer on a Global Scale. Direct-to-consumer brands of all shapes and sizes are coming to GELF to learn how to balance traditional B2B retail distribution with emerging direct-to-consumer ecommerce opportunities around the world. One of the hottest topics at GELF recently has been understanding what to look for in your next-gen global distribution partners.


  • The Rise of Global Ecom-systems.  As international marketplace platforms evolve into global distribution ecosystems, digital engagement with consumers matter more than ever. Amazon and Alibaba may be the pace setters but they aren’t the only game in town! Regional platforms like Mercado Libre and Zalando offer enticing alternatives to the global titans.  Meanwhile social communities offer niche opportunities to connect with the next generation of global consumers.


  • Social Connectors and Influencers are redefining how the global shopper discovers new brands and innovative products and services. In LA, we’ll learn how brands are working with emerging influencers to connect with the rising global middle class.


  • Getting Closer to Global Shoppers. Cross-border is no longer just about shipping from your US distribution centers to customers around the world. As expectations rise globally for fast delivery at an attractive price, the bar is being raised.  At the same time, growing govt and regulatory scrutiny is generating more and more cross-border friction. As a result, retail brands and ecommerce entrepreneurs are investing in hybrid fulfillment operations, drop shipping and local delivery from retail store partners to service their global consumers.


  • Localized Operations. The more global we go, the more local we must become. Learn how content and operational “g-localization” boosts conversation by improving both the on-site shopping experience and the ability to provide a world class post-order experience tailored to a wide range of consumer expectations.


  • Evolving Cross-Border Platforms. Looking for a one-stop spot to shop for global DTC and cross-border ecommerce solution partners? There is a booming international ecosystem of cloud commerce solutions, commerce agencies and best-of-breed software providers boldly leading global ecommerce brands, experienced omnichannel retailers and start-up commerce ventures into new markets. Meet them at GELF LA in April!

GELF combines breakout sessions and deep-dive workshops with our morning & afternoon keynotes and showcases. Our program offers retail professionals strategic insights and actionable takeaways about how ecommerce leaders are tackling their top cross-border challenges and how they are making the case for investing in global retail growth.

Networking starts during breakfast, extends into lunch and wraps up during our late afternoon reception. We’re working hard to align the program with what the GELF community wants, so raise your hand and get involved with our One-to-One@GELF LA meetings and our new Executive Meetups@ GELF 2022

Bring your experiences and questions. Leave with insights and answers.

Look Who's Attending GELF LA '22

More than 200 global e-commerce professionals are expected at GELF LA 2022 including many of the brands below that attended past GELF LA forums


We are developing an all-new GELF LA 2022 program - and look forward to finalizing the draft agenda below and announcing speakers in the weeks ahead. We welcome your ideas and insights. If you are a retail or brand executive interested in sharing your global DTC and cross-border ecommerce experience, please contact us at - thanks!

If you haven't joined us at a GELF event before, please check out our GELF YouTube Channel where we have video recordings of GELF NYC '21 -

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  • Welcome and Opening Remarks
  • Morning Keynote Firesides & Panels
  • Morning Break
  • Concurrent Morning Breakout Sessions & Workshops
  • Lunch
  • Afternoon Keynote Firesides & Panels
  • Afternoon Break
  • Afternoon Breakout Sessions, Workshops & Executive Meetupss
  • GELF Networking Reception
8AM to 9AM
Breakfast and Networking
9AM to 9:30AM
Welcome and Opening Remarks

The GELF co-founders welcome our West Coast audience and thank our sponsors!

We will explore how key international ecommerce trends & market data frame the day’s program and examine key drivers of global DTC and  cross-border ecommerce growth.


9:30AM to 10 AM
Opening Keynote: Where We've Been and Where We're Headed

Our morning keynote looks back at the year-plus boom in global ecommerce sales and glimpses forward at the path ahead for both well-known retail brands and fast-growing DTC innovators in markets around the world.

What lies in store for the global ecommerce community as the pandemic lingers and global shoppers adjust to the New Normal?

How are leaders re-connecting and re-engaging with consumers who have new shopping behaviors and follow different customer journeys?

What digital opportunities await us as the demise of many traditional retail brands and legacy wholesale distributors is offset by the rise of new retail formats and DTC brands?

Learn how digital’s move from side show to the main stage is helping leaders rethink the strategic role of global ecommerce and omnichannel retail as the pandemic ebbs.


10AM to 10:30AM
Keynote Fireside

Our morning keynote fireside focuses on how multi-portfolio brands are successfully investing in global DTC strategies in both mature and emerging international markets.  Investing in global ecommerce growth also means building the right team for the times.

Our speakers explore lessons learned from the 2021 holiday shopping season. Which product categories maintained recent market share gains? How did the return to in-store shopping impact cross-border ecommerce? How can global omnichannel operations help overcome international fulfillment challenges that will linger into 2022? Is a universal shopping journey emerging that offers retail brands of different shapes and sizes exciting new opportunities to service an international audience of online shoppers? Who is influencing today’s global shopper to buy what and from whom?

Join our experts to learn how holiday gifting, group buying, social commerce and new international consumer preferences, behaviors and awareness offer new growth opportunities.

10:30AM to 11AM
Executive Leaders Keynote Panel

Our executive leaders keynote panel discusses how their organizations are re-prioritizing global expansion plans.  We explore how regional and country priorities are changing as markets around the world look beyond the pandemic?

Our panelists also explore their evolving channel mix. As global retail brands expand globally, DTC cross-border operations, international marketplaces and in-country sites all factor into the mix – often on a country-by-country basis.

Partnerships and B2B ecommerce is changing as well. For some brands, traditional international distribution partners continue to play an important role; but these roles are transforming with the times. Our panelists share their POVs on how digital is disrupting global distribution and how they are growing international sales as new go-to-market partners and platforms take share from traditional retail wholesale partners.

Lastly, we explore how the pandemic has changed the customer journey and how global ecommerce leaders are using customer-centric strategies to tune their products and marketing operations to new global buying behaviors.


11AM to 11:15AM
Morning Break
11:15 to 11:45AM
Channel Strategy Showcase: International Marketplace Platforms

GELF’s channel strategy showcase focuses on international marketplaces and explores how global ecommerce is helping to disrupt traditional distribution & B2B channels.

Global marketplace platforms are solidifying their place as the preferred “digital-first” distribution partner for many brands investing in their direct-to-consumer initiatives – especially those in new global markets.

So its no surprise that the strategic role of international marketplaces is changing for many organizations that have traditionally sold primarily through wholesale and B2B retail partners.

Join our panel as we explore the pros and cons of working with international marketplaces and platforms.

Learn what it takes to evolve from selling to global wholesale partners to selling with these global distribution partners.

11:15 to 11:45AM
Regional Showcase: Asia-Pacific Ecommerce Strategies

China rebounded first from the pandemic – and remains the biggest and most alluring cross-border ecommerce market in the universe. But are internal dynamics in China clouding the clarity of digital commerce opportunities in Greater China?

China isn’t the only booming ecommerce opportunity in APAC; Japan and South Korea both offer significant revenue opportunities –  and Australia and New Zealand are always in the mix for global DTC brands.

Our APAC Regional Showcase explores where the best opportunities lie for ecommerce investments in 2022 – and why global ecommerce leaders are succeeding in China, Japan, South Korea and beyond.

Learn how today’s shopping journeys differ among APAC shoppers and which upstart social and specialty ecommerce platforms are gaining on the leaders.

11:45 to 12:15PM
Innovation Showcase: Building Customer Loyalty by Localizing Cross-border Operations

One of the realities of cross-border ecommerce is that conversion rates lag domestic rates.  Uncertainty about the real cost of  tariffs, taxes and fees is one culprit. Another challenge is high shipping costs – and vague (or non-existent) policies such regarding cross-border returns.

In this session, we explore how brands focus on global online sales and innovative practices designed to overcome friction before and after checkout.

Our panelists share how leaders can boost international conversions by more effectively communicating the total landed cost of an order. Hear about what it takes to plan and execute all-inclusive cross-border pricing strategies on a market-by-market basis. We share tips for lowering international shipping costs and for establishing cost thresholds for offering free international returns.

11:45 to 12:15PM
International Shipping Realities in a Post-Pandemic World

Supply chain constraints and shipping disruptions have defined 2021.  What comes next?

Our speakers share their perspectives as we examine the latest research, insights and analysis about why the decade ahead promises to shake up the dynamic world of global logistics.

Learn more about the international shipping-related constraints that are here to stay. Our logistics insiders share their POVs on what to watch for as new regulations  impact international shipping in 2022 and beyond.

Join us to find out how expectations among global shoppers for faster and cheaper shipping, 24/7 transparency  and frictionless returns will impact your cross-border operations and will define your global growth strategies.

12:15 to 1:45PM
Lunch and Networking
1:45 to 2:15 PM
Afternoon Keynote

As an unprecedented digital commerce growth surge moderates, global ecommerce leaders are taking stock of lessons learned from the pandemic. Our afternoon keynote explores the key trends ahead framing the next era of ecommerce growth.

Our keynote examines key environmental, social, and governance  considerations guiding DTC ecommerce companies as they weigh future investments in global ecommerce infrastructure innovations. We discuss how a focus on  sustainability will guide the next round of capital investments in fulfillment and logistical innovations.

Customer journeys have transformed markedly in key markets around the world since we last gathered at GELF LA 2020. We debate which consumer’s buying behaviors are short-lived – and which ones will be longer lasting.

Curious about the “global tech stack” investments that lie ahead?  Join us we as look around the next bend in the road to global ecommerce growth.

2:15 to 2:45PM
Afternoon Keynote Fireside: Scaling Today for Tomorrow's Growth

As the new global retail landscape materializes, retail brands positioned to thrive in tomorrow’s marketplace are re-accelerating DTC ecommerce strategies. Some do so via partnership with traditional wholesale partners; others embrace new strategies and sign on new platform partners.

Both face operational challenges as digital disruption at the wholesale level transforms the accepted practices by which branded manufacturers have traditional taken goods to global markets. Our afternoon keynote fireside examines how brands are prioritizing international expansion objectives that can be achieved quickly and at scale.

Learn how leaders are leaning in to optimize cross-border opportunities by overcoming constraints tied to older modes of international product distribution.

Gain insights about the new data and benchmarks that global ecommerce leaders require as they weigh the different market entry models that make the most sense for their target markets. Listen in as they share differing POVs on what to look for in local distribution and technology partners – and when and what to outsource.

2:45PM - 3:15PM
Afternoon Executive Leaders Keynote Panel

Global supply chain disruptions redefined the 2021 holiday shopping season – and no country escaped the product shortages and shipping delays that slowed the growth of international trade.

Leaders in the global ecommerce community are investing billions to reinvigorate their supply networks as they  scramble to reinvent their supply and demand chains. Yet at the same time new cross-border regulations and anti-monopolistic government policies introduce additional uncertainty.

GELF’s executive leaders keynote panel tackles these and other related global supply chain questions as we try to re-imagine how products get from manufacturers to consumers with the least amount of operational friction.

3:15PM to 3:30PM
Afternoon Break
3:30PM to 4PM
Regional Growth Showcase: LATAM Ecommerce

GELF LATAM in Miami launched in May of 2019 and was a resounding success. At GELF NYC ’21, we heard from many brands who prioritizing cross-border ecommerce opportunities in Mexico and other key markets in Latin  America including Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Colombia.

Is LATAM your next big global ecommerce bet? Should it be?

Mexico is attracting more attention from global ecommerce leaders who find that solving payment, shipping and delivery constraints opens opportunities to serve a very attractive – and relatively close – customer base.

Meanwhile Brazil remains a cross-border opportunity defined in part by  border friction and shipping constraints. Opportunities in Colombia, Argentina and Chile beckon as LATAM shoppers who came online in throes during the pandemic keep coming back for more.

Learn why LATAM ecommerce may offer your company its next big global ecommerce bet!

3:30PM to 4PM
GELF's Global Tech Talks

GELF’s Tech Talks tackle head-on the operational cross-border pain points creating friction for global online sellers.

Whether the friction stems from accepting local or cross-border payments so shoppers can pay how they prefer or overcoming complex cross-border trade regulations creating costs and complexities, Job #1 is alleviating the pain.

Join our speakers as they share how their clients are successfully navigating cross-border pitfalls that face retailers and brands extending their digital reach globally. GELF’s Tech Talks wraps up with Town Hall Q&A session with international ecommerce experts.

4PM to 4.30PM
Regional Growth Strategies Breakout: O Canada! Opportunities North of the Border

Our second regional growth strategies breakout looks to the North and explores opportunities and challenges facing retail brands pursuing ecommerce growth with the US’s #1 trading partner. Canadian consumers have always embraced cross-border shopping in the States and the pandemic accelerated the growing propensity to buy online from US ecommerce brands.

Canada remains the first international market for which ecommerce leaders plan and execute their cross-border strategies. Find out what’s changed since the pandemic closed the border and what lies ahead as trade with Canada resumes.

4PM to 4.30PM
DTC Strategy Showcase: New Brands. New Strategies.

Direct-to-consumer (DTC) brands typically lead traditional retailers by a significant margin when it comes to the percentage of ecommerce revenue coming from shoppers outside their home countries.

However, even the most successful DTC brands can benefit significantly from localization best practices – from both customer engagement and operational perspectives.

Our closing panel discusses lesson learned from global-first DTC brands that are innovating from product discovery to post-order re-engagement in different markets around the globe.

4.30PM to 5PM
Executive Meetup Roundtables@GELF

The GELF community has spoken and we’re listening. Our Executive Meetups roundtables launched in 2020 and GELF’s structured group discussions are back for 2022!

Our community asked us to coordinate opportunities for digital commerce executives to meet others with common interests facing similar challenges.  Based on community feedback we gathered @GELF LA 2022 registration, we’re developing a chance for you to talk shop with other execs whose global ecommerce operations – or aspirations – are at a similar state of maturity.

Each small group discussion will be facilitated by a table leader or two. Stay tuned for our topics!

5PM to 6PM
GELF Networking Reception

Thanks to all of the speakers joining us at GELF LA 2022! Stay tuned as we update our speakers in the weeks ahead.

If you are an experienced executive from an online retailer or brand and are interested in speaking at GELF LA 2022 on February 10th, please email Kent, Jim and Scott at

Gabriela Gutierrez Velarde

Digital Strategy and Ecommerce Lead, GNC Mexico

Tassie Christopher

VP International Business Development, Paula’s Choice Skincare

John Hazen

Chief Digital Officer, Boot Barn

Patty Wu

SVP, General Manager - buybuy BABY, Bed Bath & Beyond

John Lawson


Angela Clark

Executive Vice President of Digital at True Religion Brand Jeans

Derrick Dinglasan

Founder @

James Thompson

VP of Ecommerce & Growth, Nutrabolt

June Pai

GM, APAC, Manduka

Sherri Kuo

Head of Marketing, Italic

Casey Gee

Director of International Business, Manscaped

Indy Guha

Chief Marketing Officer & Alliances Leader, Signifyd

Juliana Pereira

VP Marketing, Flow Commerce

Matthew Merrilees

CEO, North America, US, ‎Global-e

Shannon Thompson

VP, Americas, Aramex International

Rob Keve

CEO and Co-Founder, Flow Commerce

Brian Bourke

Chief Growth Officer, Seko Logistics

Mike Sanchez

CRO, Flavorcloud

A.J. Hernandez

President & CEO at SkyPostal

Jason Nyhus

Senior Vice President of Sales and Partnerships, Digital River

Kent Allen

Co-Founder, Global E-Commerce Leaders Forum

Jim Okamura

Co-Founder, Global E-Commerce Leaders Forum

Scott Silverman

Co-Founder, Global E-Commerce Leaders Forum

DGA Theater

7920 Sunset Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90046

West Hollywood

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