World Retail Congress 2019


Rita Clifton

Rita Clifton

Rita Clifton


Rita has been called ‘Brand guru’ by the Financial Times and ‘The doyenne of branding’ by Campaign magazine. The Daily Telegraph described her as ‘The brand leading the brands’.

Rita graduated from Cambridge University and started her career in advertising, where she became Vice Chairman and strategy director at Saatchi & Saatchi in its most successful period. She then joined Interbrand, the world’s leading brand consultancy, as London CEO and then became Chairman for a ten year term. She now has a portfolio of chairing and non-executive director roles, including ASOS, Ascential plc and Nationwide. Past board roles have included Dixons Retail plc, Bupa, Emap and Populus, the opinion pollster and research company. In 2013, she co-founded and is Chairman at BrandCap, the brand consultancy for the boardroom which now has offices in London, New York and Hong Kong.

She has worked with many leading retail businesses, including Marks & Spencer, Lane Crawford and Alliance Boots, and she speaks around the world on all aspects of brands, branding and business leadership. Retail speaking and judging engagements have included International New York Times, Retail Week, and Economist conferences. She is also a regular commentator in all the major TV, radio and news channels and was a judge and mentor on CNBC’s award-winning series ‘Pop Up Start Up’, which was supported by Alibaba. Her writing has included the best selling book ‘The Future of Brands’, and The Economist book ‘Brands & Branding’.

Pro bono board roles have included WWF and the UK Government’s Sustainable Development Commission. In the 2014 New Year’s Honours List, Rita was awarded a CBE for services to the creative industries.