David has spent most of his life creating, and growing strong, valuable brands that are meaningfully differentiated and grow shareholder value.

The History Of Retail In 100 Objects – The Rialto Bridge


History Of Retail Rialto Bridge

It’s Tuesday so it’s The History Of Retail In 100 Objects post – This weeks object is The Rialto Bridge

Recognised worldwide as an architectural icon , the Rialto Bridge in Venice is the oldest of four structures spanning the ancient city’s Grand Canal. Construction of the bridge was necessitated by the popularity of the Rialto Market on the canal’s eastern bank. Venice flourished as a centre of trade throughout the 13th and 14th centuries and its dominance of the maritime industry and trade made it one of Europe’s most prosperous cities.

The Rialto Bridge was at the centre of it all and for centuries served as the only dry land connection across the Grand Canal. As such, the bridge helped facilitate commerce in one of the world’s most vibrant trading hubs. An early version of the bridge established in 1181 was made of floating pontoons. However, the establishment of the Rialto Market and its growing popularity prompted construction of a higher capacity wooden structure. The original wooden bridge was built with inclined ramps on either side and a centre section which could move to accommodate the passage of larger vessels on the canal. Although an improvement from earlier versions, the wood structure required frequent maintenance, occasionally caught fire and collapsed on several occasions. To remedy the situation, a stone structure was considered and in 1551 proposals were requested from architects. A design for a stone structure similar to the wooden bridge to be replace was accepted from Antonio da Ponte. The design was regarded as bold, if not foolhardy, and sceptics feared the centre span would collapse due to the weight of the stone. Construction proceeded and the bridge was completed in 1591. The concerns of sceptics proved unfounded as the Rialto Bridge has withstood the test of time and more than four centuries after its completion remains serviceable.

 Contribution to Retail History

The Rialto Bridge in all its various forms contributed to the success of the Rialto Market and the establishment of Venice as a hub of global commerce. The bridge highlighted the important role infrastructure plays in facilitating commerce and provided crucial ingress and egress to the city’s vibrant market. The establishment of new sea routes diminished Venice’s role on the world stage, but the enduring image of the Rialto Bridge serves as a reminder of the city’s bygone greatness.

The History Of Retail In 100 Objects Is Available As A Free Podcast

History of Retail Podcast

David Roth In Retail Conversation With…

DR Retail Con_Sept2014

I am going to do another in the popular series “In Retail Conversation…” This time the subject is Tesco’s and I will be in conversation with Bryan Roberts, the insightful –  Insights Director at Kantar Retail with a wicked sense of humor.  We will be sending out invitations to attend on Monday but as a special offer to my blog readers you are going to get advance priority and you can sign up for this online event now,  for free. Places are limited and it will be a sell out. So register right away before it is full. All you need is a web connection, sound and a reasonably fast connection. It takes pace on Thursday 11 September at 3pm GMT London time and lasts 60 minutes. You can register here.  Bryan and I are looking forward to it…Hope you can join us.



BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable Indian Brands

The BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable Indian Brands was launched in Mumbai a couple of weeks ago and has featured prominently in the press and on TV.  The growing opportunity of India and the changing Indian consumer challenges all brands to remain relevant and different. Every brand has its story. So I have created and presented short individual videos about each of the BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable Indian Brands stories. The films also contain some unique footage and content about India. So over the next few weeks I will be featuring some of these videos in my blog. I hope that you enjoy them. Tuhin produced, shot and edited all the videos so a massive thanks to a very talented film maker.

Here is the first one.

It is the 50th brand in the rankings.

Liptons. Yes the tea brand. How appropriate.

Information Is Beautiful

Here is an Infographic with  the key insights from the BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable Indian Brands done by the very talented Kay. Thank you Kay….

Infographic BrandZ India

In Retail Conversation With…

David Roth In Retail Conversation with

It was great to do this webcast with Bryan. It’s packed with insights which would be helpful for anyone looking at how to be more successful for the holiday session 2014/5. Not that much planning time to go…scary.

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