2019 Ireland’s Convenience Summit Speakers Revealed


What’s Next for Food-to-Go? Spectacular speaker line-up announced

As the food-to-go market continues to soar across the island of Ireland, it is never been so crucial for retailers to know what lies in store for this dynamic channel.

Last year, the total size for the food-to-go segment in IOI was €458m in terms of consumer spending and €160m in operator purchases.

Steve Gotham, Director of Insight at MCA says, “Food-To-Go is a growing and increasingly influential component within the total ‘Eating Out’ market. We predict there is a prize of £2bn to be fought over as the market grows to reach over £23bn by 2022.”

Food-to-go is the most intensively competitive sector within the entire foodservice market. Market winners will be operators and retailers who impress on the core needs of speed, value and quality.

“It is predicted that growing opportunities will also be presented through innovating around the emerging trends for more conscious consumerism and ultra-convenience,” Steve adds. “With key younger adult consumers in particular looking to be more responsible their health and the wider environment, and also wanting technology-led time-saving solutions, the next few years promises to be an exciting period as the market adapts and evolves.”

Busier schedules drive the need for more convenient foodservice solutions. According to the 2016 Morgan McKinley Working Hours Survey, nearly three quarters of Irish employees reported working longer hours than they are contracted to in 2016. Today, consumers are looking to source food at anytime, anywhere, creating a continued emphasis on convenient options.

The food-to-go market is pivotal to the convenience sector. According to Val Kirillovs, Research and Insights Director at HIM, “the latest shopper research highlights price and convenience as two of the key trends that retailers need to focus on. Those retailers that are seeing great success in food-to-go market are offering a variety of hot and cold options that cater to the needs of their particular shoppers.”

With so much opportunity at stake, Ireland’s Convenience Retailer Summit brings you everything you need to know from some of the biggest foodservice market names from around the world. From innovative fresh food concepts, to the latest technologies, to expert insight in how to achieve sustainable success in this sector, the ICR Summit is not one to miss. S

2019 Speakers Revealed

Dame Kelly Holmes – Nothing is Impossible

Double Olympic Champion Col. Dame Kelly Holmes is one of the world’s most popular athletes, respected throughout the globe as a role model and an inspiration.

As an Olympic, Commonwealth, and European champion that has achieved seven Gold, eight Silver, and four Bronze medals throughout her career, Kelly Holmes is an inspiring motivational speaker who shares how she overcame diversity to achieve her lifelong dream.

Before Col. Dame Kelly started winning gold medals, her career was overshadowed by injury and disappointment. At Ireland’s Convenience Retailer Summit she will draw on how she found the determination and dedication to overcome this as she emphasises that we can all overcome our hardships, especially in the workplace, just as she did.

Eric Dzwonczyk – Turning Food Margins into Profits

Eric Dzwonczyk is a Managing Director at AlixPartners and co-leads the Restaurant, Hospitality and Leisure sector globally.  He has over 25 years of consulting and industry experience in the Restaurant, Convenience Store, CPG and Food Industries. His efforts have delivered significant operational improvements and large-scale transformation programs in a number of different environments.

Gray Taylor – Digital Disruption in Convenience

Gray is the executive director of Conexxus, is a non-profit, member-driven technology organization dedicated to the development of the convenience store and petroleum market. Gray has been involved in heading global product management for three of the world’s largest retail petroleum equipment and systems suppliers and acting as Vice President of Research & Technology for the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS).

Jerry Gamez – Achieving Sustainable Success


As CEO of global bakery and award-winning eatery business Le Pain Quotidien, Jerry Gamez has a wealth of global experience when it comes to achieving sustainable success in the food-to-go industry.  Before taking on his current role, Jerry was the co-founder, CEO and member of the executive board of Consumer Investment Partners. 

Terry McShane – Navigating Rapid Industry Change

As former area manager for F.A. Wellworths and responsible for opening and growing Caseys Retail Group, Terry is no stranger to overcoming obstacles and achieving sustainable success in the convenience sector. Today the group operates five Londis stores, four circle K forecourts, three Chopped restaurants and two Supermacs and 1 four-star Pizza with 180 people employed throughout.

Stuart Fitzgerald – The Evolution of Naturally Fast Food

Stuart Fitzgerald is MD and co-founder of the company which operates the LEON franchise in Ireland. He has worked with a range of franchised concepts in food & beverage and general retail and has in depth experience of the elements that are required to build, manage and control a successful franchised estate.

Katie Cantwell – Finding your Niche in Food-to-Go

Katie Cantwell traded in her career in corporate consulting and founded KC Peaches in 2006. KC Peaches is the first whole foods cafe and catering company in Dublin, serving only all-natural food. What started as a simple business idea has turned into four thriving KC Peaches Stores with 150 employees. With a passion for food developed in her native Seattle and nurtured in France, Katie yearned to bring naturally flavourful hand-crafted food to the masses.

Travis Sheetz – Building a Convenient Food-to-Go brand

Travis Sheetz

Travis Sheetz began his career with Sheetz as a Real Estate Site Selector in Western PA and Ohio. Since then, he has served as Director of Real Estate, Director of Sales, and Vice President of Operations. In 2018, Travis was appointed President & Chief Operating Officer, making him the first COO in Sheetz history, responsible for the day-to-day operations of the company’s 600+ locations.