Built by Retail People for Retail People

Our Purpose; We believe leadership development should not be a luxury and unattainable, everybody is worthy of learning. We aim to reinvent retail education, develop future leaders, one manager and one skill at a time. 

Our mission is simple; To inspire retailers to invest in their best asset, their people. By simplifying learning and making it affordable.

Our core values are what drives us;

  • Creative; We create content that is relevant and engaging, inventing new ways to learn
  • Honesty;  We know what our capabilities are and stay true to who we are
  • Curious; We are curious about people and the world we live and work in
  • Agile; We strive for speed and efficiency and are not afraid to learn new ways of operating
  • Community; We contribute to our community and inspire retail as a desirable career

Our team gets it with over fifty years of combined experience in retail sales and operations we know retailu is the best resource out there.

We believe engaged employees create engaging customer experiences, which is only possible through engaged leaders. We believe in the power of development and what this can do for your business. We are fast becoming the choice of retail brands as we have outpaced the content, positioning and technology of previously popular retail training providers. We are CURRENT, ON POINT and more AFFORDABLE.

People build brands, we build people.

photo of April Sabral of retialu

Meet April Sabral, founder and President of retailu.

“I started my retail career as a part-time sales associate in London (UK). Like most working in retail, I thought about what it was I should be doing; and as the years passed my retail career grew from sales to manager to Vice President of Sales and Operations for a national Canadian retailer. Now as Founder and President of retailu, my mission is to provide leadership development at an affordable price making it accessible to all retail managers. I know what operations people want to be better at their job after leading them for 25 years. And succession planning team members throughout my time in field operations.

I have had the pleasure of working for many established brands such as Gap, Banana Republic, Starbucks, Apple, Holt Renfrew and other privately-owned Canadian retailers. I am highly passionate about what I do, and I have a proven track record of developing teams to their highest potential.

We thought about you when we built retailu. Knowing that retail hours can be long or unpredictable, retailu is accessible on your phone so you can learn on the go! You can learn at your own pace, or network with other retail managers to find solutions and coaching for your most significant challenges.”

April is also a guest speaker at national retail conferences. To book please email info@retailu.ca or connect with her on Linkedin.

photo of April Sabral of retialu

Meet Jane Shannan, Director of Content and Operations.

Jane is an Operational GURU with an eye for detail.

From an early age, Jane loved retail. Her first retail job was in Barnsley UK as a sales associate at the iconic brand Marks & Spencer. She quickly progressed and was promoted due to her drive for results and organizational skills. Jane has worked in various sales and operations leadership roles over the years and believes to win in retail, organization, good communication and clear strategies matter. Her expertise is in organizing, process, and productivity improvement. Jane understands what it takes to run a retail store, as she has done it many times.

Jane is responsible for all content and marketing at retailu and keeping us all organized!

To contact Jane, email her @ Jane@retailu.ca

Meet our trusted advisory board

Jon Plens

Former President with Reitmans Canada Limited; a transformational leader, has multiple brand experience (Retail & wholesale), board experience in the corporate and non-profit sectors. Focused on profitable growth speaks to more than 30 years of “real world” schooling and savvy acumen for people, communicating vision, and leadership style,  Known for impacting the bottom line and building engaged teams, with responsibility for merchandising, operations, marketing, visual, social media, digital and omnichannel strategy.


Howard Tafler

A Bilingual finance leader and CA with strong business acumen, 25+ years of experience and extensive expertise in strategic financial management, business transformation, process improvement and the implementation of corporate controls and best practice policies and procedures. A key member of numerous leadership teams working cross-functionally across all aspects of the business to develop companies, brands, vision, strategic direction, operations, infrastructure, retail networks and full value chains from customer needs and competitive positioning to back-office operations, technology integration and supplier contributions.


Joanne Nemeroff

Joanne is an international senior retail leader who has led the revitalization, reconstruction and growth of well-known brands as President of La Senza, President of Penningtons, GVP of Call It Spring and SVP of Holt Renfrew /Ogilvy to name a few. Joanne has also implemented best practices across three divisions of Limited Brands International and provided retail strategy for Mark’s. Presently working as a board director, retail consultant, business coach and mentor and advisor to new businesses. Joanne’s knowledge and experience is invaluable.


Nathalie Binda

Creative and passionate professional with 15+ years of progressive experience across a broad range of marketing experiences, blending traditional and non-traditional marketing strategies working for brands like DAVIDsTEA and LOLE. Nathalie’s strong experience in multiple distribution channel strategies including wholesale, retail and digital within the Canadian, U.S. and European markets. Twelve years’ experience in the fashion industry with an emphasis on the athleisure market (yoga, fitness, lifestyle).


Fil D’Urbano

Fil is an accomplished Human Resources Executive, with a proven track record of supporting key business drivers for fast-paced national and international ivy league organizations such as Limited Brands, Group Dynamite, Bombardier and Ardene. Fil Combines passion, creativity, and an entrepreneurial spirit in assembling world-class leadership teams, building capability, and driving results.
Fil is a trusted advisor providing thought leadership in change management and culture-shaping to deliver stakeholder value.


In my first ever leadership book, I share my 3-step Leadership method called how to ACT, lead with awareness. (Accept-Create-Teach) as a way of being.

I take you through my retail journey, life lessons and give practical examples that you can act on. The ACT leadership method can be applied to your personal and business life, this is why people are loving it!

 Grab your copy at AMAZON today. It is available in all countries.

Latest Press

Retail Insider Press release November 2020