For more than 50 years, GMDC|Retail Tomorrow has created and fostered important connections between the non-foods industry, retailers, manufacturers, and the consumer. With a strong legacy of leadership, we are proud to have led the industry in connecting our members to General Merchandise (GM) and Health, Beauty and Wellness (HBW) category growth opportunities.
Through our pioneering of the “speed dating” conference format, the development of SEC trading partner meetings, and our launching of the GMDC Connect platform enabling virtual trading partner meetings, our focus has always been on connecting our members. Our pivot to 100% virtual connectivity in 2020 and 2021 has been a lifeline for many member organizations disrupted by the global pandemic.
Nonetheless, our membership – and the industry – have been impaired by Covid, and while we see hopeful signs emerging on the horizon, it’s clear that the pandemic’s impacts on business practices and policies will be lasting. Live events and industry conferences will continue to be reassessed, as connectivity is now occurring in new ways.
As such, today we are announcing a member vote on a board-approved resolution to dissolve GMDC|Retail Tomorrow as a member-owned nonprofit, effective December 31, 2021. This news is disappointing to many, but we recognize that our industry has changed significantly across 51 years, and simply put, we are responding to our members’ evolving business needs.
While we acknowledge the continued disruptions impacting the retail industry, we are committed to searching for new and innovative ways to deliver meaningful connections through technology, content, and trading partner relationships – beyond GMDC|Retail Tomorrow. Until then, we will continue to provide member benefits and connectivity through the end of the year.
We cherish the relationships we have built and supported, and it has been our privilege to serve our members and the industry for the last half-century.
We are grateful for your support.
Q: Why is GMDC|Retail Tomorrow announcing this now?
A: Following a strategic review by the GMDC|Retail Tomorrow board, we believe that dissolution at year-end is the responsible thing to do in service of the industry, our members, and the GMDC|Retail Tomorrow staff
Q: What member services will be available to GMDC|Retail Tomorrow members through year-end?
A: All of them. The GMDC|Retail Tomorrow website, myGMDC member area, and GMDC|Retail Tomorrow mobile app will all be active through 12/31/21
Q: What other associations are available to my company if we want to participate within the industry?
- IHA – Housewares manufacturers
- CHPA – OTC manufacturers
- NACDS – GM and HBW manufacturers, S/S providers
- FMI – GM and HBW manufacturers, S/S providers
- NGA – GM and HBW manufacturers, S/S providers
- NCA – GM confectionery manufacturers
- NACS – GM and HBW manufacturers, S/S providers
Q: My company has a credit on the books for 2021/2022 events – what happens to the money?
A: All funds will be returned to GMDC|Retail Tomorrow members who have prepaid dues and/or conference registration
Q:What happens to GMDC|Retail Tomorrow’s financial reserves?
A: The Executive Committee of the board will manage the distribution of GMDC|Retail Tomorrow’s remaining reserves
Q: Do I still have to pay for the Fall SEC meetings?
A: Yes, GMDC|Retail Tomorrow provided you with a meeting schedule that your organization accepted and will provide on-going member services through 2021. Your prompt payment of your outstanding invoice is both expected and appreciated and is important to the planned dissolution of the organization. GMDC|Retail Tomorrow board members will be monitoring payment and AR schedules
Q:Do the members get to vote on this decision?
A: Yes. GMDC|Retail Tomorrow retailer/wholesaler organizations (the voting members) have received a memo from the board and a proxy ballot to return to GMDC|Retail Tomorrow by 11/12/21
Q: Why didn’t GMDC|Retail Tomorrow merge with another association?
A: Options were considered but there was no specific association that was a good fit across our membership