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No design-conscious household is complete without one of Alessi’s products, be it Philippe Starck’s citrus juicer or Michael Graves’s kettle. Alberto took over the family firm and revitalised the brand, commissioning top-name designers and experimenting with new materials. He describes how traditional brands and working methods can be reinvigorated without losing the original ethos and customer loyalty.

A career ad man, Kevin Allen was notable for leading the pitch on the famous Mastercard ‘Priceless’ campaign. His account skills have been applied as Director of Global Accounts and Chief Growth Officer for some of the world’s biggest ad agencies. He now looks at how companies can grow, where the opportunities lie, and how great leadership inspires the greatest asset - the workforce.

After spells at BA and Thomas Cook, Tony was the third employee to join easyJet. He was central in steering it from ambitious start-up to the biggest single airline in Europe. It now flies twice as many passengers as BA. Tony still works with Stelios on projects like peer-to-peer car rental. In speeches he tells the inside story, including brand extensions that didn’t quite go to plan: “It certainly helps to be in the right place at the right time, but anything is possible providing you avoid complacency.”

Chris sells creative talent from several cultures to marketers and governments. He’s also the author of Ethical Marketing & The New Consumer, and THUNK - a different way to think. In speeches Chris suggests ways to market to socially conscious consumers based on a ‘triple bottom line’ that considers people and planet as well as profit. A former Saatchi Creative Director, he also shows how to re-ignite the creativity we enjoyed as children.

Seven years ago guerrilla marketing helped James successfully launch Gü, taking on entrenched competition. The company has kept on growing, introducing new lines and winning an Exporter of the Year award in 2008 for their sales in France. James acknowledges that decisions now have to focus more around cash flow, but he also sees it as essential to take risks. He has confidence in the resilience of his product as an ‘affordable treat’, and believes exchange rates offer significant opportunities.

James concentrates on the relationship between emerging technologies and the way we live, work and do business. He considers the age of ‘big data,’ the ageing population and the rise of a billion-strong global middle class. He also assesses the consequences of the shift in the balance of economic power and its impact on the world’s financial centres.

James is credited with creating the ‘lads’ magazine sector, which has since become a worldwide phenomenon. After LOADED he then published Jack, Viz and Bizarre. With a management style akin to Gordon Ramsay, he talks passionately about how to spot talent and build teams around the brand.

The business author, Sunday Times cartoonist and brand consultant believes fresh thinking is the only way to sustain competitive advantage. He is also a champion of simplicity as the perfect antidote to an increasingly complex world. With a wonderfully dry wit Guy shows how to find solutions to virtually any problem, throw off conventional thinking and avoid meaningless clichés by breaking every challenge into small parts and seeing through others’ eyes. After dinner the bestselling business writer lives up to his billing as the David Attenborough of the corporate jungle.

Robert played a major role in the evolution of one of the world’s leading brands. (He’s also the man who employed Jonathan Ive.) More recently he’s been responsible for designing ‘beats by dr. dre.’ Robert asks whether your customers would shed any tears if you were gone tomorrow. If not, what needs to change? Passionate about the ideas that make people want to interact with certain objects, he explores how innovation can solve the world’s problems – not always from the obvious angles.

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