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MARKETS & INVESTING | Staff Reporter, Singapore
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ZALORA's managing director to speak at SBR's Hottest Startups Panel Briefing 2017

Giulio Xiloyannis will discuss how to build a sustainable brand.

ZALORA Group is Asia Pacific’s leading group of online fashion destinations. Founded in 2012, the company has a presence in Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia & Brunei, the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Hong Kong and Taiwan where it operates as ZALORA and in Australia and New Zealand where it operates as THE ICONIC.

Giulio Xiloyannis heads ZALORA in four key markets – Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, and Taiwan – better known as “The Cluster”, leading the performance and business plan within these markets.

His scope of expertise encompasses managing buying and stock planning, pricing, online and offline marketing, partnerships and alliances, communications and public relations, product and IT system development and management.

Prior to ZALORA, he worked in other companies founded by Rocket Internet GmbH, the world's largest Internet incubator as well as covering positions in the investment banking world for JP Morgan and Rabobank International.

Giulio Xiloyannis holds a Master’s degree in Economics and Business from University of Pisa. Singapore Business Review caught up with with Xiloyannis to find out his thoughts about the startup scene at the upcoming SBR 20 Hottest Startups Panel Briefing 2017.

What are your previous experiences and positions held that contributed to who you are as an entrepreneur today?

My first "grownup job" was in banking, first in commodity trading and following that in the Investment Banking M&A department of JPMorgan Chase, I moved from banking to e-commerce in 2012, joining the Rocket Internet Business Development team in Italy/Milan, this gave me exposure to a number of e-commerce startups and projects among which the most relevant was the time I spent helping the founding team of Dalani.it (Westwing Group), a home and living e-commerce site, get the business up to speed in their first year in operation. I moved into Southeast Asia in 2013, joining ZALORA's office in Kuala Lumpur.

What are your key business philosophies?

I admire and try and practice: analytic problem solving (what do the numbers say?); decision making (the worst leader is the one that doesn't make a call for his team to act on); be ready to admit a mistake and change your decision (decide but don't be blind to the signals that follow); nurture the team, a sign of a great leader is that of being able to "render himself useless" in certain tasks by coaching his second liners into being better and more focused than him on them.

Can you give us a glimpse of what you will talk about at the ​20 Hottest Startups Panel Briefing 2017?

We will be talking about Branding, and specifically about a brand story, my best example for this is of course ZALORA's Brand building efforts in the past couple of years, key focuses will be online VS offline spend, partnership campaigns VS standalone ones, and content quality VS reach tradeoffs.

The SBR 20 Hottest Startups Panel Briefing will be on July 11 at the Meeting Room 3345, Suntec Singapore Convention & Exhibition Centre.

If you are interested to attend, you may contact Nikki Quiniquini at nikkiq@charltonmediamail.com or at +65 3158 1386 ext 238.

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