The Global Department Store Summit

GDSS is the world’s leading discussion platform for department store CEOs and senior executives and their stakeholders including brands, suppliers and service companies to meet, network and  exchange ideas. GDSS 2022 is organised by Nordstrom and IGDS.

Past Summits

• GDSS 2018 in London
During GDSS 2018, 30 industry experts, economists, department store leaders and London figureheads shared their insights and strategies on ‘The Power of Luxury Redefined’ in front of an audience of executives from around the world. Selfridges was the winner of ‘The Best Department Store in the World’ Award in 2018; ‘The World's Best Business Partner to Department Stores 2018’ Award was given to Gucci.

• GDSS 2016 in Zurich
At the 5th GDSS, major industry figures shared their insights and strategies on 'Delighting Global Travellers at Home & Away'. Organised by Jelmoli and IGDS, which on this occasion also celebrated its 70th anniversary, the Summit welcomed senior executives from 65 department stores. Rinascente won the envied title of 'Best Department Store in the World'; Harvey Nichols took home the 'World's Best Store Window Campaign at a Department Store' award and Selfridges won the 'World's Best Sustainability Campaign at a Department Store' award.

• GDSS 2014 in Singapore
The 4th GDSS was staged in Singapore, organised in collaboration with TANGS. The conference - held in Asia for the first time - was attended by retail executives and stakeholders from 46 countries, including leaders from 56 department stores. During the two-day event, top retail leaders shared their views and strategies on the theme ‘Capturing the Retail REvolution’Selfridges was recognised as the ‘Best Department Store in the World’ for an unprecedented third time consecutively; in competition were two other world-renowned department stores: Macy’s, USA, and Breuninger, Germany.

• GDSS 2012 in Paris
The 3rd GDSS was held at the iconic Centre Pompidou in Paris, organised in collaboration with Printemps. Carrying the title ‘Staying Relevant for Growth’, the Summit presented compelling presentations and great insights from 20 highly experienced retail CEOs from America, Asia, Europe and Australia. Selfridges was elected ‘Department Store of the Year 2012’ for the second time; the other finalists were Macy’s, USA, and Woolworths, South Africa.

• GDSS 2010 in New York
The 2nd GDSS saw delegates from 36 countries attending the Summit in New York. Organised in collaboration with Saks Fifth Avenue, this Summit carried the theme of ‘Winning in the New Retail Environment’, with fourteen CEO speakers presenting their success stories. Selfridges, UK, won the ‘Department Store of the Year 2010’ Award; the other finalists were Bloomingdales, U.S.A., and Lane Crawford, Hong Kong.

• GDSS 2008 in London
The first GDSS was staged in London in May 2008, and was organised in cooperation with Selfridges. Leading executives from the global retail industry attended this successful event and benefited greatly from the dynamic presentations of fourteen highly experienced department stores CEOs on the topic of 'Growth Opportunities for Department Stores'. During the Official Dinner, the title of ‘Department Store of the Year 2008’ was awarded to Bloomingdales, USA; the other finalists were Central Department Store, Thailand, and Woolworths, South Africa.