Bob Rae, Anthony Stokan to Headline Hardlines Conference

Posted by on Jul 11, 2013 in Featured | 0 comments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE            Contact: Michael McLarney, 416-489-3396

TORONTO, July 9, 2013 — Retail Guru Anthony Stokan is the latest retail expert to join the Hardlines Conference, October 23 and 24, 2013. Joining Stokan this year is a range of speakers that reflects the varied range of challenges facing retailers and vendors alike in today’s tough business environment.

The incredible range of speakers comes from both within and outside the retail home improvement industry. James Ryan, Vice-President, Home and Hardlines at Sears Canada, will offer a perspective on retail from the vantage point of one of Canada’s largest retail chains. At the other end of the spectrum, Frances Sologuk of Osoyoos Home Hardware is one of the country’s most innovative and successful independents.

Hardlines Bob Rae HeadShot-web

An important part of the Hardlines Conference each year is the “Profiles in Leadership” Series. This year, HARDLINES is proud to welcome former Parliamentarian Bob Rae. Rae served as Ontario’s 21st Premier from 1990 to 1995, and since 1978 has been elected 11times to federal and provincial parliaments. From 2011 to 2013, he served as the Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada.

What are the trends in retail? Delegates will hear from Rafe Petkovic of Google Canada, who is responsible for leading Google’s sales teams that guide customers’ online and multi-channel strategy to drive more customers to their stores. Ibrahim Ibrahim is managing director at Portland Design, a leading international branding and retail design consultancy based in the UK. Ibrahim returns to the Hardlines Conference by popular demand, after wowing our audience just two years ago.

Jill Nykoliation is president and lead strategist of ad agency Juniper Park. Her team brings together the disciplines of strategy, design, and advertising for a global client roster that includes Virgin Mobile, The Source, CIBC, Del Monte, EOS, Pfizer, Tropicana, and Weston Bakeries.

Rounding out the program are Jeffrey Kilgour, VP special projects & analysis at Eacom Timber Corporation; and Pat Bolland, media coach and host at Sun News Network.

The 18th Annual Hardlines Conference will be held October 23 and 24 at the Sheraton Toronto Airport Hotel. Click here for more info and to register today.

About Hardlines
Now in its 18th year, Hardlines is a leading authority on the retail home improvement industry. Hardlines’ products and services include its weekly HARDLINES electronic newsletter; its hard-copy magazine, Hardlines Home Improvement Quarterly; a comprehensive and informative website; a free Daily News Service; and the Annual Hardlines Conference Series, a two-day symposium that gathers retail executives from all over the world. For more information, please contact Michael McLarney, Editor of Hardlines at 416-489-3396 or

Pictured:  Bob Rae, a former Liberal Member of Parliament who served as the Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada from 2011 to 2013, is one of the keynote speakers at this year’s Hardlines Conference.