BRP report: Customer-led demand is driving retailers to transform their business to be more customer-centric

According to the 2017 Merchandise Planning Survey, Retailers are Focused on Transforming their Entire Merchandising Process from End-to-end

Boston, MA, 2017-Dec-06 — /EPR Retail News/ — According to a new report from BRP, retailers must accommodate customers who “pre-shop” for merchandise online before they ever enter a store, want one-day or even same-day delivery, and expect “more” from their shopping experience – more personalization, a larger assortment, a more fulfilling experience and non-stop entertainment. Customer-led demand is driving retailers to transform their business to be more customer-centric.

“Customers use technology daily to enable and control their shopping journey,” said Gene Bornac, senior vice president at BRP. “Now it is up to retailers to play catch up with their organization, processes and technology to deliver the right products for the right price in the right place.”

For retailers, it is imperative to take a customer-centric viewpoint. To innovate the customer experience, they must transform their disparate systems, processes and organization into one cohesive environment with the ability to offer customers a seamless shopping environment across any channel and the capability to deliver merchandise immediately – wherever it is needed. It is time to prepare for the future of retail – it is here – whether we are ready or not.

Within this challenging environment, BRP conducted its 2017 Merchandise Planning Benchmark Survey to explore the current state of retail planning and to identify and understand retailers’ priorities as they strive to meet the needs and demands of today’s consumers.

To prepare for today’s new retail model, retailers need to:

Align the organization

  • 58% of retailers currently have an integrated planning organization across channels

Integrate planning processes        

  • 64% of retailers have integrated their business planning processes across channels

Implement the right technology

  • 33% of retailers have implemented new omni-channel demand planning systems within the last two years

Prioritize customer insight

  • 42% of retailers incorporate real-time customer feedback into their in-season planning

Take action

  • 19% of retailers must overcome IT/business resource constraints to advance their planning activities

To download the complete 2017 Merchandise Planning Survey, visit: https://brpconsulting.com/2017-merchandise-planning-survey/.

The 2017 Merchandise Planning Survey platinum sponsor is TXT Retail and the gold sponsors are Enspire CommerceJustEnoughLogilityNCR, and Retalon.

About BRP

BRP is an innovative retail management consulting firm dedicated to providing superior service and enduring value to our clients. BRP combines its consultants’ deep retail business knowledge and cross-functional capabilities to deliver superior design and implementation of strategy, technology, and process solutions. The firm’s unique combination of industry focus, knowledge-based approach, and rapid, end-to-end solution deployment helps clients to achieve their business potential. BRP’s consulting services include:

Strategy | Business Intelligence | Business Process Optimization | Point of Sale (POS) Mobile POS | Payment Security | E-Commerce | Store Systems and Operations | CRM Unified Commerce | Customer Experience | Order Management | Networks Merchandise Management | Supply Chain | Private Equity

For more information on BRP, visit http://www.brpconsulting.com.

Source: BRP

Nisa Retail members vote in favour of the Co-op Group’s offer to buy 100% of the business

MANCHESTER, UK, 2017-Nov-15 — /EPR Retail News/ — Nisa Retail, the delivered wholesaler and convenience retail specialist, is pleased to announce that its members have voted significantly in favour of the Co-op Group’s offer to buy 100 pct of the business for up to £137.5m.

At the Court Meeting of the members held at Elland Road, Leeds, earlier today members voted 75.79% in favour and 24.21% against the Co-op’s offer. The offer requires clearance from the Competition and Markets Authority, which is expected around the end of March next year.

Nisa Chairman Peter Hartley said:

“We are delighted that our members have chosen in such significant numbers to vote in favour of Co-op’s offer. We as a Board are firm in our belief that a combination with the Co-op is in the best interests of Nisa’s members. The convenience store environment is changing rapidly, and is unrecognizable from that which existed when Nisa was founded more than 40 years ago. Co-op will add buying power and product range to our offering, while respecting our culture of independence.”

Jo Whitfield, CEO Co-op Food said:

“We are delighted that Nisa members have supported our offer and our ambition to create a stronger member-led presence within the UK convenience sector. Together Co-op and Nisa can go from strength to strength, serving customers up and down the country and creating real value for them in their communities. Our offer remains conditional on CMA approval and we remain in discussions with them.”

Nisa shareholders will receive an equal initial payment, a deferred share payment payable over 3 years, as well as additional rebates payable over 4 years.

Along with taking on the existing Nisa debt of £105m, the combination is expected to bring significant immediate and long-term benefits for Nisa members including access to greater scale, the Co-op’s award-winning range and own label proposition. Members will still enjoy the independence to operate their stores as they wish, and will be able to remain part of a member-owned organisation within the growing UK convenience retail sector. In October 2017, Nisa reported a positive H1 trading for the 26 weeks to 1 October 2017, with total sales up 12.4% to £728m on the comparable period.

In June, the business also announced that it had completed the £120m refinancing of its debt facilities, providing longer term, cheaper, and more flexible capital for Nisa to further invest in growth over the next three to five years.

Notes to the editor:

About Nisa Retail Limited

Nisa is a unique member owned organisation, helping independent retailers remain competitive in the food and drink markets. With the retail sector being largely dominated by the multiples, Nisa’s objective is to create benefit, including negotiating the best deals on products, to allow its members to compete effectively. Nisa supports nearly 1,200 local retailers and more than 3,200 stores across the UK. Some operate under the Nisa brand and others under their own names. Nisa supplies the stock they need and the retail support that helps them to grow their business. In the year ending 2 April 2017, Nisa’s revenue was £1.252bn. EBITDA was £8.6m and profit before tax was £2.8m.

About the Co-op Group

The Co-op is one of the world’s largest consumer co-operatives, with interests spanning food, funerals, insurance, electrical and legal services. It has a clear purpose of championing a better way of doing business for you and your communities. Owned by over 4.5 million members, the Co-ophas 3,800 outlets in communities across the UK. It employs around 69,000 people and has an annual turnover of over £9.5 billion.

Enquiries:
Temple Bar Advisory (PR adviser to Nisa)
nisa@templebaradvisory.com
0207 002 1486

Tom Allison
07789 998 020

Ed Orlebar
07738 724 630

The Co-op Group:
Jon Church
07545 210 812

Russ Brady
07880 784 442

Source: Co-op Group

Australian Retailers Association: Retailers conducting business in Australia should pay their tax just like Australian retailers currently do

Wellington Parade, East Melbourne, 2017-Apr-24 — /EPR Retail News/ — The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) strongly supports the Government in closing the Low Value Threshold (LVT) loophole for the purchase of offshore tangible goods under $1000.

Russell Zimmerman, Executive Director of the ARA said they have been working with the Federal and State Governments to reduce the low value threshold and provide a level playing field for Australian retailers.

“This is a tax equity issue and internationally-based retailers should pay their fair share of tax,” Mr Zimmerman said.

“Retailers conducting business in Australia should pay their tax just like Australian retailers currently do.”

The ARA has said this GST has been a long time coming, expressing thanks to then Assistant Treasure Bill Shorten for his commencement of the process in 2011.

“Multiple jurisdictions are already introducing similar laws as this is a global tax issue,” Mr Zimmerman said.

“This new legislation will create a fairer tax system for Australian retailers by creating a level playing field against international competitors.”

This new model may not be perfect but the ARA believes that the proposed system is the best model at this point.

“Freight companies and credit card businesses should not be responsible for collecting this tax, the onus should fall on internationally-based businesses to collect it” Mr Zimmerman said.

“Australian retailers already collect this tax in Australia, therefore it is unnecessary to complicate this process and allow international retailers to continue to exploit this legislative loophole.”

“We already know that overseas retailers selling online have the capability of charging taxes as required by Australian law,” Mr Zimmerman said.

The ARA will be appearing as witnesses at the Senate Economics Legislation hearings this Friday 21 April to reiterate the importance of this GST.

“We strongly support this proposed GST model and will continue to work with the Government to resolve any implementation issues,” Mr Zimmerman said.

Mr Zimmerman will be available at 12 noon outside the Flinders Room at Mantra Hotel, 222 Russell Street, Melbourne VIC 3000

For interview opportunities with ARA Executive Director Russell Zimmerman call the ARA Media Line on 0439 612 556, or email media@retail.org.au

About the Australian Retailers Association:

Founded in 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is the retail industry’s peak representative body representing Australia’s $310 billion sector, which employs more than 1.2 million people. The ARA works to ensure retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 7,500 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. For more information, visit www.retail.org.au or call 1300 368 041.

Contact:

1300 368 041

Source:  Australian Retailers Association (ARA)

Amazon Business provides enhanced transaction data on customer purchases

Customers can now streamline reconciliation with enhanced transaction data when they use Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citi, and PNC Visa commercial cards on Amazon Business

SEATTLE, 2017-Apr-12 — /EPR Retail News/ — Amazon Business has teamed up with Visa to provide enhanced transaction data on customer purchases made with Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citi, and PNC U.S. issued Visa commercial cards. With enhanced transaction data, Amazon Business customers will receive additional details on their purchases and can easily reconcile their business purchases, resulting in increased speed, visibility and accuracy of expense recording. Along with other Amazon Business benefits, such as Free Two-Day Shipping on tens of millions of eligible items, multi-user business accounts, approval workflows, tax exemptions and dedicated customer support, enhanced transaction data provides corporate card administrators with greater visibility and control over their organization’s spending.

“The ability to easily view and control spend is a top priority for business customers. By working with Visa, we are now able to offer business customers the enhanced reporting they need for greater efficiency,” said Prentis Wilson, Vice President of Amazon Business. “We are excited about this new level of data we are providing to users of Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Citi, and PNC Visa commercial cards.”

The transmission of line-item detail will provide Amazon Business customers with transparency into their organization’s spend and allow them to streamline their reconciliation and expense reporting processes. With the addition of enhanced transaction data, Amazon Business customers can now receive detailed data on purchases made with their Visa commercial card that can integrate seamlessly with popular expense reconciliation tools. Examples of the additional data available include item description, quantity, invoice number, PO number, tax rate and tax amount.

“This added functionality will help us eliminate the manual, time-consuming process of reconciling and recording our business purchases,” said Terry Lastinger, Assistant Director of Purchasing, Tulsa Community College. “Resources that were historically dedicated to the reconciliation process will now be reallocated thanks to Amazon Business, allowing us to focus on other areas of our procurement operations.”

Amazon Business, available in the U.S., U.K., and Germany, is a marketplace that combines the selection, convenience and value customers have come to know and love from Amazon, with new features and unique benefits tailored to the needs of businesses. Amazon Business provides easy access to hundreds of millions of products – everything from IT and lab equipment to education and food-service supplies. There are now more than 45,000 business sellers who have accessed the Amazon Business Seller feature set. Amazon Business also offers Business Pricing or Quantity Discounts on more than five million products.

Amazon Business serves businesses of all sizes and across industries, including hospitals, educational institutions, Fortune 50 companies, government agencies, daycares, restaurants, labs, and sole proprietors. To register for a free Amazon Business account, visit www.amazon.com/business. To add your product(s) to Amazon’s growing selection, visit www.amazon.com/business-seller. More information about Amazon Business is available at www.amazonbusinessblog.com.

About Amazon

Amazon is guided by four principles: customer obsession rather than competitor focus, passion for invention, commitment to operational excellence, and long-term thinking. Customer reviews, 1-Click shopping, personalized recommendations, Prime, Fulfillment by Amazon, AWS, Kindle Direct Publishing, Kindle, Fire tablets, Fire TV, Amazon Echo, and Alexa are some of the products and services pioneered by Amazon. For more information, visit www.amazon.com/about and follow @AmazonNews.

Media Hotline:

206-266-7180
amazon-pr@amazon.com
www.amazon.com/pr

Source: Amazon.com, Inc.

ascena underscores the importance of female leadership in business and the need for gender equity on public boards

ascena underscores the importance of female leadership in business and the need for gender equity on public boards

 

NEW YORK, 2017-Mar-21 — /EPR Retail News/ — After the ascena retail group, inc.’s quarterly Board of Directors meeting, four women members left the Board Room in Times Square to pay tribute to the “Fearless Girl” statue on Wall Street to underscore the importance of female leadership in business and the need for gender equity on public boards.

ascena Board Members Katie Bayne, Senior Vice President, Global Sparkling Brands, The Coca-Cola Company; Kate Buggeln, Senior Advisor, Irving Place Capital; Linda Yaccarino, Chairman of Advertising Sales & Client Partnerships at NBCUniversal; and Kay Krill, former President and CEO of ANN INC. stand with the “Fearless Girl” on Wall Street in solidarity and celebration of female leadership in business, gender equality and the progress ascena has made regarding equal representation on its Board. (Photo by Angela Pham, BFA)

Four of the eight ascena Board Members are women, including Katie Bayne, Senior Vice President, Global Sparkling Brands, The Coca-Cola Company; Kate Buggeln, Senior Advisor, Irving Place Capital; Kay Krill, former President and CEO of ANN INC.; and Linda Yaccarino, Chairman of Advertising Sales & Client Partnerships at NBCUniversal.

“Today, we are proud to stand in solidarity with each other and with the “Fearless Girl” to honor the significant impact and growing influence women have on the future of business and society,” Kay Krillsaid on behalf of her colleagues on the ascena Board of Directors. “As female leaders, we believe boards need to make meaningful progress in gender equality NOW for the next generation of women as well as for economic success.”

“Gender parity is an issue we feel strongly about, especially as a family of brands that serves women and girls,” said David Jaffe, President and CEO of ascena retail group, inc. “A few years ago, we made the very intentional decision to completely transform our Board with a greater emphasis on gender balance and are proud to have 50% female representation on our Board today.”

About ascena retail group, inc.

ascena retail group, inc. (NASDAQ: ASNA) is a leading national specialty retailer offering apparel, shoes, and accessories for women under the Premium Fashion segment (Ann Taylor, LOFT, and Lou & Grey), Value Fashion segment (maurices and dressbarn), Plus Fashion segment (Lane Bryant and Catherines), and for tween girls under the Kids Fashion segment (Justice). ascena retail group, inc. operates ecommerce websites and approximately 4,900 stores throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

For more information about ascena retail group, inc. visit: ascenaretail.com, AnnTaylor.com, LOFT.com, louandgrey.com, maurices.com, dressbarn.com, lanebryant.com, cacique.com, Catherines.com, and shopjustice.com.

Contact:

For investors:
ICR, Inc.
James Palczynski
203-682-8229
Partner
jp@icrinc.com

For media:
ascena retail group, inc.
Sue Ross
218-491-2110
Corporate Affairs
sue.ross@ascenaretail.com

Source: ascena retail group, inc.

ABBYY Mobile announces 90% off on Productivity and language Apps

abby-black-fridayMilpitas, CA, 2016-Nov-24 — /EPR Retail News/ — Black Friday is a long-awaited day for everyone who doesn’t want to pass up a good deal. This year ABBYY Mobile has prepared some great Black Friday discounts for its productivity and language apps.

Productivity apps:

Business Card Reader Plus for iOS – 90% off: $3.99 instead of $39.99
Business Card Reader Pro for Android – 70% off: $3.99 instead of $14.99

Convert paper business cards to digital with a single tap, manage, export and use them effectively on your smartphone or Apple Watch. Featured by the New Your Times, CNN and The Telegraph.

FineScanner Pro for iOS and Android – 90% off: $3.99 instead of $39.99

Make high-quality electronic copies in PDF or JPEG and convert printed text on them in 193 languages to MS Word, Excel and more. Best mobile scanner according to LifeHacker, editor’s choice at PCMag, featured on Discovery.
TextGrabber + Translator for iOS – 80% off: $0.99 instead of $4.99
TextGrabber + Translator for Android – 90% off: $0.99 instead of $9.99

Capture printed text in 60+ languages and translate it into 100+ languages. Digitize and recognize text from books, magazines, ads, and timetables on the go. Featured by Business Insider and LifeHacker.

Bundle:

Black Friday Bundle: TextGrabber + FineScanner Pro – 90% off: $3.99 instead of $41.99

Language apps:

Larousse Spanish Basic for iOS – 50% off: $0.99 instead of $1.99 (Americas only)
Larousse Spanish Advanced for iOS – 60% off: $1.99 instead of $4.99 (Americas only)
Spanish Advanced set of Larousse dictionaries – 50% off: $2.99 instead of $5.99 (Americas only)

Special offer for español learners. Explore useful content bundled with smart word look-up functionality – phrases, idioms, synonyms, antonyms and over 75,000 definitions.
Lingvo Mac – 50% off: $19.99 instead of $39.99

Licensed offline dictionaries for 7 languages with translations and examples of words and phrases (English, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese and Russian).

All the information is available on the website: https://www.abbyy.com/en-us/blackfriday-mobile/

Contact-Details: Catherine Matantseva
Catherine_Mat@abbyy.com

Alliance Data Systems Corporation’s Columbus, OH-based card services business to provide private label and co-branded credit card services for Ulta Beauty

PLANO, Texas and BOLINGBROOK, Ill., 2016-Aug-03 — /EPR Retail News/ — Alliance Data Systems Corporation (NYSE: ADS), a leading global provider of data-driven marketing and loyalty solutions, today announced its Columbus, Ohio-based card services business, a premier provider of branded private label, co-brand and commercial credit programs, has signed a new long-term agreement to provide private label and co-branded credit card services for Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ: ULTA, www.ulta.com). Ulta Beauty, based in Bolingbrook, Ill., is the largest beauty retailer in the United States, operating 886 stores in 48 states and the District of Columbia.

Ulta Beauty and Alliance Data have partnered to develop and manage the Ultamate Rewards Credit Card program which is designed to enhance the benefits of the popular Ultamate Rewards loyalty program and increase engagement with the Ulta Beauty brand. The Ultamate Rewards co-brand credit card program will leverage the MasterCard network so cardmembers can use it anywhere MasterCard is accepted around the world. In addition, cardmembers will have exclusive access to an array of outstanding benefits and unique experiences, including the Priceless Cities program, available only to MasterCard cardholders.

“At Ulta Beauty, we keep the guest at the center of all we do. Enhancing our guests’ shopping experience with added convenience and benefits through this new partnership with Alliance Data is yet another way for us to do that,” said David Kimbell, chief marketing and merchandising officer at Ulta Beauty.

Alliance Data will employ its best-in-class data assets and loyalty marketing expertise and will utilize in-store, online and mobile channels to acquire new Ultamate Rewards Credit Cardholders. The program’s robust value proposition will be designed to reward Ulta Beauty guests for visiting more frequently with a shopping experience that will deepen their connection to the brand by accelerating benefits of the existing Ultamate Rewards program. Alliance Data’s Conversant® and Epsilon® businesses are also providing services to Ulta Beauty.

“From the in-store experience to the immensely popular Ultamate Rewards program, Ulta Beauty has fostered a passionate, loyal customer base,” said Melisa Miller, president of Alliance Data’s card services business. “We will employ our life cycle marketing approach to deliver on our promise of being a valued partner for the entire customer journey. We look forward to the possibility of existing Ulta Beauty guests becoming lifelong cardmembers with even deeper brand affinity and engagement.”

About Ulta Beauty
Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ: ULTA) is the largest beauty retailer in the United States and the premier beauty destination for cosmetics, fragrance, skin, hair care products and salon services. Since opening its first store in 1990, Ulta Beauty has grown to become the top national retailer providing All Things Beauty, All in One Place™. The Company offers more than 20,000 products from over 500 well-established and emerging beauty brands across all categories and price points, including Ulta Beauty’s own private label. Ulta Beauty also offers a full-service salon in every store featuring hair, skin and brow services. Ulta Beauty is recognized for its commitment to personalized service, fun and inviting stores and its industry-leading Ultamate Rewards loyalty program. As of April 30, 2016, Ulta Beauty operates 886 retail stores across 48 states and the District of Columbia and also distributes its products through its website, which includes a collection of tips, tutorials and social content.

About Alliance Data’s card services business
Alliance Data’s card services business is a leading provider of tailored marketing and loyalty solutions, delivered through branded credit programs that drive more profitable relationships between our brand partners and their cardmembers. We offer private label, co-brand, and commercial products to many of the world’s most recognizable brands across a multitude of channels.

We uphold our Know more. Sell more.® promise by leveraging unmatched customer insights, advanced analytics, and broad-reaching innovative capabilities. It’s how we deliver increased sales to our partners, build enduring loyalty to their brands, and provide more value to our cardmembers. Alliance Data’s card services business is a proud part of the Alliance Data enterprise.

About Alliance Data
Alliance Data® (NYSE: ADS) is a leading global provider of data-driven marketing and loyalty solutions serving large, consumer-based industries. The Company creates and deploys customized solutions, enhancing the critical customer marketing experience; the result is measurably changing consumer behavior while driving business growth and profitability for some of today’s most recognizable brands. Alliance Data helps its clients create and increase customer loyalty through solutions that engage millions of customers each day across multiple touch points using traditional, digital, mobile and emerging technologies. An S&P 500 and Fortune 500 company headquartered in Plano, Texas, Alliance Data consists of three businesses that together employ more than 16,000 associates at approximately 100 locations worldwide.

Alliance Data’s Card Services business is a leading provider of marketing-driven branded credit card programs. Epsilon® is a leading provider of multichannel, data-driven technologies and marketing services, and also includes Conversant®, a leader in personalized digital marketing. LoyaltyOne® owns and operates the AIR MILES® Reward Program, Canada’s premier coalition loyalty program, and Netherlands-based BrandLoyalty, a global provider of tailor-made loyalty programs for grocers.

Follow Alliance Data on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and YouTube.

Forward Looking Statements
This release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Forward-looking statements give our expectations or forecasts of future events and can generally be identified by the use of words such as “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “intend,” “project,” “plan,” “likely,” “may,” “should” or other words or phrases of similar import. Similarly, statements that describe our business strategy, outlook, objectives, plans, intentions or goals also are forward-looking statements.

We believe that our expectations are based on reasonable assumptions. Forward-looking statements, however, are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the projections, anticipated results or other expectations expressed in this release, and no assurances can be given that our expectations will prove to have been correct. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, factors set forth in the Risk Factors section in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year, which may be updated in Item 1A of, or elsewhere in, our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q filed for periods subsequent to such Form 10-K.

Our forward-looking statements speak only as of the date made, and we undertake no obligation, other than as required by applicable law, to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, subsequent events, anticipated or unanticipated circumstances or otherwise.

Contact:
Alliance Data:

Tiffany Louder – Investor Relations
214-494-3048
tiffany.louder@alliancedata.com

Ulta Beauty:
Olivia Mata
630-410-5408
omata@ulta.com

Source: Ulta Beauty