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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

Thanks to all the global DTC and retail brands attending GELF LA 2022 on April 21st including the global ecommerce leaders from the brands highlighted below!


We are excited to produce an all-new GELF LA 2022 program - a big thanks to all the global ecommerce leaders joining as speakers this year! We like to think of GELF as an ongoing conversation and we always 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 always feel free to 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 9:20AM
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.


9:20AM to 10AM
Executive Leaders Keynote Panel: Where We've Been ... and Where We're Headed

Our morning keynote panel explores the path ahead for well-known global retail brands and fast-growing DTC innovators.  We reflect on the ’20-’21 boom in global ecommerce sales and discuss why retail brands are re-prioritizing – and in some cases re-defining – what global ecommerce means to their organizations.

Hear different perspectives on what it takes to thrive globally in a post-pandemic retail world as cross-border shoppers return to a semblance of normalcy, re-balance their lives and re-prioritize their values.

Learn how these new global shopping journeys require community-centric approaches to building and leading teams and new ways to collaborate with regional colleagues and local in-market partners.

Join us as we discuss why brands need to tell a new story that blends traditional values with new priorities embraced by today’s shopper.  Find out what’s next as global ecommerce takes the main stage.


  • Angela Clark, Head of Digital Studio, Patagonia
  • Zach Goldstein, Founder and CEO, Public Rec
  • Kellie Swanton, VP International Expansion, Reformation
  • Elizabeth Krause, Vice President Digital, North America, Speedo (Pentland Brands)
10AM to 10:30AM
Keynote Fireside: How Continuous Experimentation + Nimble Execution Propels APL's Global Growth

Simply put, many DTC brands “crushed it” during the 2021 holidays as cross-border ecommerce’s “echo boom” set online sales records in markets around the world. GELF’s morning keynote fireside features a live case study that explores how lessons learned from successful holiday campaigns are helping fast-growing DTC brands accelerate 2022 sales.

NJ Falk shares how Athletic Propulsion Labs drafted off their successful holiday marketing program momentum to craft a super successful International Women’s Day campaign.

NJ also discusses how her team’s relentless market testing unearthed new opportunities in global markets that weren’t high on the radar.  Learn more about how re-visiting your “rest of world bucket” provides actionable insights for optimizing ecommerce opportunities presences in new markets as well as existing countries.

Curious about the road ahead now that Global-e and Flow have joined forces? Rob Keve, EVP of SMB & Channels at Global-e moderates the case study conversation and provides the GELF community with an exciting update about the path ahead for clients of the two global ecommerce platform leaders.


  • NJ Falk, Managing Partner, APL- Athletic Propulsion Labs
  • Rob Keve, EVP of SMB & Channels, Global-e
10:30AM to 11AM
Scaling International Operations: How GOAT Built an Authentic Brand - and a Passionate Global Fanbase

Passionate consumers searching for authentic goods from specialty fashion & apparel brands they trust have driven the growth of cross-border ecommerce from Day One.

Curious how GOAT has become a wildly popular digital platform where 30M+ avid members buy sneakers, luxury apparel and accessories from 600,000 exclusive sellers across 170 countries? Although GOAT’s secret sauce is authenticating epic styles and fashions, the heart and soul of the firm’s explosive growth lies in mastering global operations.

Hamaad Akmal, GOAT’s Head of International Operations & Global Logistics shares how scaling logistics and customer-centric strategies has enabled GOAT to cost-effectively deliver authentic fashions from one corner of the world to another.

Hear how GOAT found the right global logistics partner – and how the innovative brand works with SEKO to master supply chain dynamics in a world of constrained shipping capacity and rapidly rising costs.


  • Hamaad Akmal, Head of International Operations & Global Logistics, GOAT
  • Brian Bourke, Chief Growth Officer, Seko Logistics
11AM to 11:15AM
Morning Break
11:15 to 11:45AM
Overcoming the Complexity of Global Expansion: How to Choose the Best Path Forward

Whether real or perceived – or somewhere in between – the complexities associated with global DTC and cross-border ecommerce require a new approach; one steeped in the principles and practices of customer experience management.

Join our panelists as they contrast the different paths retailers and DTC brands follow as they optimize global ecommerce operations and evolve to become “brands without borders” capable of connecting with an increasingly borderless global online shopper. Hear how focusing less on ensuring regulatory compliance and more on enhancing the cross-border customer experience can help grow ecommerce sales globally.

Expanding internationally can feel like you need to “choose your own adventure.” So it’s no surprise when some brands take a cookie-cutter approach to growing global ecommerce sales. Hear why your brand’s cross-border journey should start by prioritizing the Top 10 elements of a great customer experience – and how relying on strategic go-to-market partnerships can help your team avoid complexities that aren’t always obvious.


  • Phoebe Yu, Founder & CEO, Ettitude
  • Drew Labrosse Sr. Director of Ecommerce Strategies, Digital River
  • Patrick Frith, Global Trade, Avalara
11:15 to 11:45AM
Building Trust via Innovation: A Winning Strategy in Challenging Times

No matter where you turn these days, margins are getting squeezed.  At the top of funnel, marketing and media costs are increasing as customer data regulations tighten.  Lower in the funnel, fulfillment, shipping and delivery costs are skyrocketing as yesterday’s relatively attractive margins on international shipping become a distant memory.

To build trust with wary consumers and re-connect with weary post-pandemic shoppers, smart global ecommerce leaders are innovating in the middle of the funnel. Our fireside explores how DTC brands are cost-effectively engaging shoppers via social & influencer marketing strategies and optimizing revenue by enhancing the site experience, checkout, and payments.

Hear how to regain control of the customer experience as attractive DTC ecommerce growth opportunities meet the hard reality of rising costs and tight margins.


  • Rajaa Grar, Chief Marketing and Digital Officer, Nutrabolt
  • J Bennett, SVP of Operations and Corporate Development, Signifyd
11:45 to 12:15PM
Strategy Showcase: Global Omnichannel

Shopper expectations for a more engaging customer experience have risen dramatically in recent years, in all regions of the world. Retailers and brands are prioritizing strategies throughout the customer experience funnel to make cross-border shopping more engaging for consumers – and more profitable for their organization.

Making global customer data and intelligence actionable and optimizing inventory and order management in international markets are key areas for most brands to improve the international ecommerce shopping experience.

Retailers know that broad and deep product selection drives top-line growth. Removing friction in the shoppers’ product discovery requires smart segmentation and product recommendations in real-time at the top of the funnel.  By assuring cross-border shoppers that orders will be efficiently processed and fulfilled, retailers gain profitable repeat international customers.

Our panelists provide perspectives and advice that span the global omnichannel sales funnel. Hear how retailers with sizable product catalogs are using smart customer data management and intelligent catalogs to manage the customer experience and increase engagement with their brand more effectively.

We also discuss how global ecommerce leaders are staging inventory closer to international shoppers.  Our panelists explore how drop shipping, order management and global omnichannel solutions help ensure that brands deliver on their promise to cross-border customers while managing vendor and brand compliance dynamics.


  • Kipenzi Chidinma, CEO & Founder, Lineij
  • Chad Hooker, VP Global Channels and Alliances, Fluent Commerce
  • Nathan Loveless, VP of Sales, Americas, BlueShift
11:45 to 12:15PM
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 new health concerns and internal regulatory/political dynamics in China are clouding the clarity of ecommerce 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 why having the right mobile strategy can mean thriving in Asia-Pacific markets.


  • June (Pai) Van Heel, Head of International, Bala
  • Wenqing (Isabel) Gan, Founder/CEO, Rose Planet International Brand Management Inc
  • Nicole Granucci, Vice President of Product Marketing, Citcon
12:15 to 1:45PM
Lunch and Networking
1:45 to 2:15 PM
Afternoon Keynote Fireside: Getting Closer to the Shopper by Re-inventing Global Logistics

Global supply chain disruptions redefined the 2021 holiday shopping season. Almost everyone dealt with complications from component and product shortages – and shipping delays negatively impacted the post-order customer experience.

Few, if any, retail organizations escaped the rapidly rising costs of shipping product across borders. Most now face increased complexity as global logistics challenges loom while cross-border ecommerce sales keep growing briskly.

As a result, global ecommerce leaders are revisiting supply chains as they explore how they can manage the growing costs of distributing products to international destinations. Third party logistics partners are playing an increasingly strategic role as retail brands explore how to stage products closer to the international shopper.

We start our afternoon program with a panel discussion about how leaders are simplifying the complexity and challenges of cross-border order fulfillment.  Join us as we re-imagine how products get from manufacturers to consumers more cost-effectively – and with the least amount of operational friction.


  • Casey Gee, Director of International Business, Manscaped
  • Pablo Diaz Barriga, VP, International, Balsam Brands
2:15 to 2:45PM
The Metaverse Beckons! Understanding the Whats, Whys and Hows of the Virtual Opportunity

Our afternoon keynote looks to the future – and explores the retail ecommerce growth opportunities that await in the Metaverse. The session will examine current perceptions of the Metaverse and analyze the role that virtual product(s) and NFTs will play in the future of digital commerce.

We’re pleased to feature the latest research on consumer adoption of virtual goods & NFTs as well as insights from thought leaders about how DTC brands should approach planning strategies for virtual commerce as the Metaverse dawns.

Learn why the Metaverse offers DTC retail brand executives the promised land of nearly limitless catalog offerings – and gain a deeper understanding of the opportunities and challenges associated with catalog expansion in the Metaverse.

Hear how global ecommerce leaders like Nike and a fast-growing number of luxury brands see the Metaverse as world where adjacent trends like recommerce, the circular economy and blockchain can help build a more sustainable, portable and profitable world.


  • Speakers:
    • Kimber Cooper, Co-Founder of INTERVRSE, Co founder of Prologue & Prologue Immersive
    • Justin Hochberg, CEO & Founder, Virtual Brand Group
    • Chidi Erike, International Lead, Disruptors, Meta (Facebook)
    • Dan Wallace-Brewster, SVP Marketing, Scalefast
2:45PM - 3:15PM
Regional Strategy Showcase: Shipping to Canada

Our regional growth strategy showcase looks to the North and explores opportunities and challenges facing retail brands pursuing cross-ecommerce growth with the US’s #1 trading partner. Canadian consumers have always loved shopping in the States. But with the border closed throughout the pandemic, Canadians went online in a big way.

Most US ecommerce brands take advantage of the ecommerce boom in Canada by shipping to Canadian shoppers from their US fulfillment operations. But many are not aware of looming regulatory challenges and tax changes. Others are confused about how Canadian taxes work and the impacts of changing de minimis levels.

Our regional showcase tackles all the key “ship-to-Canada” topics you need to know. Join our panel so you don’t have to spend days dealing with Canadian trade and tax attorneys!

Learn how cross-border shipping requirements differ by carrier and channel, when retail ecommerce brands are required to register for GST and how to recover duty and tax on returns (or undeliverables). Hear about what’s next – and how new (and delayed regulations) will likely impact your ability to take full advantage of booming ecommerce opportunities north of the border!


  • Will Ryan Co-founder / COO at Wolven
  • Thomas Taggart, Head of Global Trade, Passport Shipping
3:15PM to 3:30PM
Afternoon Break
3:30PM to 4PM
Overcoming International Shipping Complexities in a Post-Pandemic World

Global supply chain constraints and disruptions with cross-border logistics defined 2021.  International shipping has always been a complex business with many moving parts, regional players, and rapidly evolving challenges, but it’s never been more crucial to gain control of your global logistics than now.

Our panelists provide first-hand perspectives about the complexities and opportunities of DTC brands going global in a post-pandemic world. Our Global DTC case study examines the real-life experiences of retailers who have navigated these challenges as well as the hurdles and cross-border regulatory dynamics that lie ahead in 2022 (and beyond).

Any merchant currently shipping internationally – or those thinking about expanding internationally – can learn how to take their post-order customer experience to the next level while improving international conversion and retaining profitable cross-border shoppers.


  • Robin Cagan, Head of Operations, OneSkin
  • Nick Stobie, Founder and CEO, Teema Towels
  • Mike Sanchez, CRO, Flavorcloud
  • Casey Armstrong, CMO, Shipbob
4PM to 4.30PM
DTC Strategy Showcase: Growth Strategies to Optimize Today’s Global Opportunities

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.


  • Derrick Dinglasan, Founder / President, OPTE
  • June Van Heel, Head of International, Bala
  • John Lawson, Founder and CEO, ColderIce


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

Hamaad Akmal

Head of International Operations & Global Logistics, GOAT

NJ Falk

Managing Partner, APL- Athletic Propulsion Labs

John Lawson


Angela Clark

Head of Digital Studio, Patagonia

Derrick Dinglasan

Founder / President of OPTE

Elizabeth Krause

VP Digital, Speedo and Pentland Brands

Rajaa Grar

Chief Marketing and Digital Officer, Nutrabolt

June (Pai) Van Heel

Head of International, Bala

Zach Goldstein

Founder CEO, Public Rec

Kellie (Siler) Swanton

VP International Expansion, Reformation

Casey Gee

Director of International Business, Manscaped

Phoebe Yu

Founder & CEO, Ettitude

Jeff Campbell


Kipenzi Chidinma

Chief Executive Officer LINĒIJ™

Pablo Diaz Barriga

VP, International, Balsam Brands

Wenqing (Isabel) Gan

Founder/CEO, Rose Planet International Brand Management Inc

Nick Stobie

Founder and CEO, Teema Towels

Kimberly Cooper

Co-Founder of INTERVRSE

Justin Hochberg

CEO & Founder, Virtual Brand Group

Nicole Granucci

VP of Product Marketing, Citcon

J Bennett

SVP of Operations and Corporate Development, Signifyd

Robin Cagan

Head of Operations, OneSkin

Will Ryan

Co-founder / COO at Wolven

Rob Keve

EVP of SMB & Channels, Global-e

Brian Bourke

Chief Growth Officer, Seko Logistics

Mike Sanchez

CRO, Flavorcloud

Drew Labrosse

Sr. Director of Ecommerce Strategies, Digital River

Thomas Taggart

Head of Global Trade, Passport Shipping

Dan Wallace-Brewster

SVP Marketing, Scalefast

Nathan Loveless

VP of Sales, Blueshift

Patrick Frith

Global Trade, Avalara

Casey Armstrong

CMO, Shipbob

Rick Watson

CEO and Founder, RMW Commerce Consulting

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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