The World in 2019: The Battle for the Future

Thursday 31st January 2019, 8:30am-9:30am

The Fable, 52 Holborn Viaduct, EC1A 2FD

If 2018 was another tumultuous year, 2019 will be no different.

In the UK the battle over Brexit and the future direction of the country will continue well beyond March 29th – whether the UK leaves the EU then or not. The febrile atmosphere continues across Europe, while across the pond Robert Mueller will be closing his investigation just as the starting gun is fired on the 2020 US Presidential Election. Beyond Europe and the US, a third of the world will be voting, driven by elections in India, Nigeria and Indonesia.

In many places these are not just political contests, but cultural wars. What’s at stake is the future.

Globally, our data reveals that there is no shared sense of progress amongst citizens and little common ground on technology, trade, environment and governance from those in charge. As 2018 draws to an end the warning signs are there: consumers are in a recessionary mood, cutting back on leisure spending for the first time in a decade while the IMF warns us that another economic storm is on its way before we’ve finished fixing the roof from last time.

Brands and businesses operating on either a local or an international stage will be buffeted by these trends, as well as wider tech-led disruption, a collapse in trust and new, zero-tolerance expectations of brands and corporate practices. Brands are facing up to a long-established political truth: you can’t please all of the people all of the time. In our increasingly polarised world – where contest currently rules over consensus and segments turn into fragments – the need to pick a side has never been greater.

There are opportunities and at the heart of it all is control. Where consumers feel more control over their lives and their future they are more optimistic and continuing to spend with confidence. Finding those consumers who feel the world is at their feet will be crucial to successfully navigate what 2019 has in store.

Join us for breakfast as we explore what consumers’ priorities for next year will be, examine the impacts of trade war, talk about why it will be a tough year for Big Tech and explain why we’ll all know a lot more about bond yield inversion curves by the end of 2019.

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