Great seminars lined up for PATS Telford, including keynote talks from pet business expert J.Nichole Smith
In anticipation of my speaking gig at PATS Telford (UK) Sept. 23-24, 2018 I had a chance to chat with Neil from Pet Trade Xtra. This was a fun interview with a few questions that were a bit different than the standard stuff… I had a chance to share a few clients on my wish list and shout-out to a couple of innovative women petpreneurs I’ve had the pleasure to work with:
What is the best/most innovative pet brand you have helped developed and why?
I am currently working with a really exciting pet tech brand that I can’t really talk about yet… but I have loved working with many brilliant, innovative minds in the pet space. Two that come to mind are Victoria Stilwell, a celebrity dog trainer who has led a movement away from aversive dog training methods and towards the future of dog training. She champions scientifically-proven methods that are both more effective and more compassionate, but she is also on the ground doing work in advocacy and working on legislation that helps dogs and their communities. I also loved working with Cynthia Chomos, who owns Catiospaces.com – she helps cats and wildlife stay safe, by helping cat owners build indoor/outdoor ‘catios’ for their cats – an enclosed space where they can enjoy the enrichment of the outdoors, without the risks. I love her and I think her business is genius.
Is there anyone you would really like to work with now?
I would love to work with Pets at Home, and I am especially keen to work with non-pet brands that could benefit from learning more about and moving into the pet space, like luxury hotels who desire to be truly pet-friendly, or investors who are looking to acquire pet brands. As I’m from Seattle, I have always wanted to work with Starbucks to develop an in-house pet brand (as their locations are pet-friendly). I really admire Cath Kidston as well, and I’d love to help them launch in the pet space. I think one of the things that is easy for pet businesses to forget, is that in countries like the UK and the US where a majority of households have dogs, many exciting opportunities for reaching more customers actually live in complimentary spaces like home, hospitality, travel, and other lifestyle brands
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PATS is a series of national pet tradeshows in the UK that take place in Fall and Spring (one in Telford and one closer to London at Sandown). These shows are are the UK’s equivalent of Global Pet Expo and Superzoo in the States. I love walking and speaking at these shows – it’s such a wonderful chance to see the wonderful new trends and innovations happening in the pet space. If you’re going to be at PATS, be sure to swing by my keynotes and say hi!