The “circular economy” is a key topic when it comes to delivering true sustainability. But the term risks being misunderstood if used as a buzzword. But it offers huge opportunities to retailers, brands and supply chains that can understand and leverage the model. To help us understand the circular economy and what it means for retail is Karen Bendell – a creative former fashion designer come retailer CEO and strategist. She joins the host, Oliver Banks and guides you through the details and implications of the circular economy.

So, listen to this episode of the Retail Transformation Show podcast and explore:

  • What is at the heart of the circular economy?
  • Why the circular economy represents a major transformation to retail supply chains?
  • Who is doing it well right now?



Register for Retail Transformation Live

Also, remember to register your free spot at Retail Transformation Live – it’s happening on the 6th, 7th and 8th of July 2021. Attend this virtual event to help transform your retail operations and operating model. So you’ll hear how the retail world is changing, how this impacts your operating model and how to make that change a success.

Register for your free spot at: www.RetailTransformation.Live.

Karen BendellIntroducing Karen Bendell

Karen Bendell is a creative, an innovator, a thinker, and a strategist.

She’s an experienced CEO and independent consultant who specialises in working with multichannel luxury and premium brands. She helps these businesses to grow and survive through digital or operational change.

Karen started her career as a fashion designer. She’s then held many roles, up to CEO at luxury menswear retailer, New & Lingwood. Her wide-ranging and exciting career has led her to be seen as a generalist. But in fact, her speciality lies in her unique ability to analyse and comprehend any business model or problem. Her experience spans many different aspects of businesses from product design to sales, or manufacturing to project management. Karen takes a holistic approach, drawing upon her varied experiences and combining this knowledge with her innovative and creative thinking.

With 25 years of experience working with ethical supply chains, Karen is excited to see a real step change in sustainability. And in particular how sustainability is seen as an opportunity now.

So, connect with Karen Bendell on LinkedIn.

Also, connect with Oliver Banks on LinkedIn. Or email him:

More information on the circular economy

If you enjoyed this episode, there is plenty of information to explore about the circular economy. Here are a few breadcrumbs to get you started.

Firstly, from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, this system diagram shows the feedback loops that span the entire supply chain.

But, as Karen mentioned in the episode, the current percentages of circularity are not great. So this diagram shows the huge opportunity for the circular economy in fashion and fashion retail. And the challenge currently presented by the volume of landfill and waste incineration.

And finally, this Tedx Talk is another great resource for you. In particular, explore some of the transformative ideas what the circular economy will mean for you.

Further podcast episodes of the Retail Transformation Show to listen to

Firstly, listen to episode 66: Profit vs. Planet – the future of retail. So here, Oliver Banks explores the opportunities and threats to the sustainability movement.

066: Planet vs. Profit: The Future of Retail- The Retail Transformation Show with Oliver Banks

Then, in episode 134: The Race To Retail Resilience, Carl Boutet, author of The Great Acceleration, joined. He explored the post-pandemic world and why we’ve been given a unique opportunity. In particular, Carl discusses the sustainability flywheel concept which is a great follow-on from this episode.

134: The Race To Retail Resilience with Carl Boutet - The Retail Transformation Show with Oliver Banks

And finally, another quick reminder… If you’ve not registered for Retail Transformation Live in July 2021 – then head straight on over to www.RetailTransformation.Live.


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