Incisive Analysis, Actionable Insights and Effective Outputs

  • We action insights and deliver results, not just plans or cleverly worded documents.
  • We deliver work with great strategies and provide strategic development.
  • We listen, understand and deliver.
  • We have experience that means the right contemporary solution is executed.
  • We understand the detail and enable good fast agile decision-making.
  • We provide the output: design and production with a commercial edge: creative ideas that sell.
  • Having difficulty executing your plan? The RPU can do that for you.
We only work for people who want

Retail Thinking

It’s all about a cross-functional delivery, not just marketing. It’s about results that you can really measure – probably within minutes of implementation.

The ability to balance brand imperatives whilst driving sales, footfall and clickfall without compromise.  Being nimble, being fresh, driving innovation, and being customer first to the point of obsession – reinforced with a good dose of commercial reality that seasoned retailers bring to the table.

Coming up with marketable ideas before you do – and ensuring that the idea is going to be actionable and profitable. Never mind waiting for a brief, but writing it because you’re so inside a business and its customer needs you don’t need much direction.

We know what questions to ask: we know what to do next. We deliver enabling processes that let you respond to opportunity quickly.

That’s what we mean by ‘getting’ retail.


Our Team

The RPU is led by a small team of experts that has delivered commercial and brand advantage in the toughest retail markets in both Australia and the UK over the last 20 years. We work at street level and online. Wherever people shop. We deliver powerful ideas and strategies, initiatives and communications that pay and pay. Driven by unique research techniques, rich customer insights that are actionable, and bucket loads of experience. We’ll help you stand back and take a closer look at your business.

Above all, we understand retail issues – we don’t just translate them. And we know how to fix them.

Alasdair M Hirst


After a robust 20-year track record of living and breathing retail to the point of obsession, delivering commercial and brand advantage with leading retailers in the UK and Australia- and FMCGs that have needed help with ‘retail thinking’ Al brings the RPU proven brand marketing, B2B and B2C marcomms strategy expertise. He delivers actionable insights for our clients. Starting his retail career in operations with Halfords UK, Al migrated to marketing with some of the most famous brand names including Comet Group (Kingfisher), Morrisons Supermarkets, Argos (UK), P&G, Staples, World Duty Free, Virgin and Lloyds Pharmacy, to name but a few.

Al is one of the few who can genuinely claim to be a long-time leader in CRM and e-commerce development, with a notable innovation and commercial success trail. He’s blessed with high creativity, obsessive customer centricity with honed insight instincts and outstanding commercial strengths. Over the decades he’s been in management, planning and marketing roles and has worked both corporate and agency side in senior management. He’s a dream to work with if you can get past the accent and the awful puns.

Geoffrey M Bowll


Geoffrey is a senior marketer with 30 years of experience in managing campaigns and driving research projects for some of the biggest brands in Australia. Working closely with fellow marketers and C-level staff, his approach is risk-averse, research-driven, analytical, outcome focused and strategically disruptive.

He has a colourful history spanning a broad range of marketing roles many of which include significant retail interfaces, and a boatful of fish (we’ll explain later).

What Geoffrey doesn’t know about research isn’t worth researching. Who he doesn’t know really isn’t worth knowing. And if you want an opinion, Geoffrey’s your man. But he shares the one thing that all RPUers hold in common: we are customer-first to the core.

Arguably the intellectual backbone of the RPU, Geoffrey brings a hatful of agency and consultancy experience, and bridges strategy, business ideas and opportunities, turning them into tangible financial outputs.

Julian A Rapkins


Julian brings a broad spectrum of international retailing experience from Australia and Europe both from an FMCG Brand supplier perspective through to National Multiple Retailers: Big Box hardware, Catalogue Process retailing and Big Box, as well as Convenience and small format, expertise.

His retailing ethos is Customer First, a hallmark of the RPU approach, which drives every thought process and action, from initiation through to execution – delivering a genuine expertise in Customer Insight: creating appropriate plans that deliver real results.

Julian has risen through the ranks through category management into leading merchandise roles for numerous brands including 7-Eleven, United Petroleum, Argos (UK), Homebase (DIY) Best Friends Supercentres, with extensive exposure to franchised, privately owned and publicly listed business

He is recognised for his coaching and mentoring style, and ability to deliver high quality outcomes across the Retailing landscape.

Our Experience

We’ve produced results working in Marketing, Operations, Advertising, Logistics and Sales Training for a few brands you might recognise. And if you don’t recognise them, click through to get some background.

Pop by for a coffee!

Any questions? Want to have a chat? Give us a call.

Unit HQ

Address: 140 Stawell Street, Burnley, VIC 3121
Phone: (03) 9428 4411