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Industry News - January 8th, 2010



Infor Names Bruce Richardson Chief Strategy Officer

Breaking News: Infor announced today that software industry veteran Bruce Richardson, who is currently chief research officer at AMR Research, will join Infor as chief strategy officer. Richardson will report to Jim Schaper, Infor chairman and chief executive officer (CEO). In addition to his role with Infor, he will serve as a strategic advisor to Golden Gate Capital, Infor's largest shareholder. 

"As a student of the market for the last 30 years, I understand the dynamics of the business software marketplace - the forces that are driving the industry and shifting the balance of power in favor of customers," said Richardson. "Infor gets it. Their leadership is changing how business software providers engage with customers. It's amazing what Infor has been able to accomplish in seven years - a large and loyal customer base, a global footprint, an exciting lineup of products, a great management team and a bright future with enormous growth opportunities."

As chief research officer at AMR Research, Richardson oversaw all aspects of analysis at the company, including opinions and reporting of key trends and strategies in areas such as ERP, supply chain management, cloud computing, service-oriented architectures, software-as-a-service, software appliances, virtualization and visualization. Richardson has covered and analyzed the enterprise software market for decades and made many early market predictions that have since proven accurate, such as the rise of the advanced planning market and the evolution of manufacturing resource planning (MRP) to enterprise resource planning (ERP). 

Richardson's insights and perspectives on the enterprise software market, and particularly his knowledge of customer needs and requirements, will continue to differentiate Infor as a software provider that consistently listens to its customers. Richardson will continue to share his insights and opinions at www.infor.com in his "An Insider's View" weekly blog.


Marks & Spencer Improves Inventory Forecasting, Replenishment

Marks and Spencer manages inventory forecasting, replenishment and order planning for its food division by using Quantum Retail's software solution, Q. 

Marks and Spencer uses Q to forecast and make inventory decisions in real-time while considering both inter-day and intra-day stocking. Q also forecasts demand at an individual item/SKU level for every store, rather than using averages across a range of similar stores. Buying decisions are made based on current stock levels, as well as considerations such as daily selling patterns, product life-cycle, seasonality, projected waste, target service levels and inventory availability.

Marks and Spencer began running Q for the first area of merchandise in less than 6 months. Rollout is planned to commence in 2010.


ARTS Hosts 10th Annual Pavilion

The Association for Retail Technology Standards (ARTS) hosts the 10th Annual Pavilion (booth 2037) during the National Retail Federation's 99th Annual Convention and EXPO, January 10-13, 2010 at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New York City. 

The booth will display the latest and greatest in retail technology platforms and information on how retailers can leverage them to increase sales and profits. The Pavilion also features a "Meet the Experts" discussion series offers an informal setting in which to ask questions and learn from retailers including Big Lots, BJ's Wholesale Clubs, El Corte Inglés, and Lowe's Companies. In addition, Pavilion visitors may review the new ARTS Cloud Computing whitepaper, with information that helps retailers evaluate and implement this new method for delivery of IT services and preview the Mobile in Retail whitepaper now in development. 

Visitors to this year's Pavilion can:

-Discuss Cloud Computing with experts from IBM and Microsoft 
-Learn about mobile technology already in place in Europe through demos by CellPoint Mobile
-Find out how Digital Receipts can help manage customer information in a demo from Third Solutions 
-See Verizon Business's vision for the future of mobile in retail 
-Review a Business Intelligence application that Profitbase built on ARTS standards 
-Explore a full function Merchandise Processing solution that imbeds the ARTS Data Model from ibs Soft Solutions 
-Discuss the PLM application from New Generation Computing (NGC) and the future impact of new ARTS standards 
-Learn how end-to-end encryption and secure scan can protect data from MagTek 
-Hear from Epson and Bizerba how the ARTS UnifiedPOS standard bridges the gap between hardware and innovative applications operating in a SOA architecture
- Learn features of ARTS Data Model 6.01 from new data tools provider Embarcadero 

For more information on ARTS Pavilion, click here.


dunnhumby Acquires KSS Retail

International marketing consultancy dunnhumby announces it has acquired KSS Retail, a provider of price modeling and optimization solutions for retailers. 

This acquisition will enable dunnhumby to combine their analysis of customer buying patterns with KSS Retail's price modeling and optimization solutions for existing and future clients worldwide.

KSS Retail provides software which generates optimized prices based on consumer demand and that models and forecasts the effects of future pricing and promotional decisions for retailers in the grocery, drug, convenience, online and general retail segments. Clients include Kroger, Sonae (Portugal), Raley's, McKesson, Associated Food Stores, Brookshire Brothers, Balls Food Stores and others. 

KSS Retail will operate as an independent business unit of dunnhumby and maintain its existing management structure. Over time, KSS Retail will bring elements of dunnhumby capability to the marketplace.


Bob’s Stores Transforms Store Communications with Mobile Functionality

Bob's Stores plans to improve communications between its retail operations team and head office by implementing Opterus Store Ops-Center at all 34 locations in the United States.

"We are very excited about the Opterus solution because of the enhanced functionality that it provides when compared to our previous system," said Kevin Campbell, AVP Store Operations, Bob's Stores. "There are a number of significant functional improvements that Opterus provides."

One of these improvements is the new mobile functionality which helps field management stay updated on new messages, tasks and issues that are assigned to the stores says Campbell. 

"The Opterus team has been extremely responsive throughout the entire process," adds Campbell. "Store Ops-Center has met and exceeded our expectations."

The store communications and task management portal will help Bob's Stores communicate with their stores through its software as a service (SaaS) model.


Robotic Vision-Based Solution Combats BOB Loss

Shoppers Food & Pharmacy, a division of Supervalu, combats bottom-of-basket (BOB) loss with a robotic vision-based solution from Evolution Robotics Retail. Using visual pattern recognition (ViPR) technology, the grocer is able to detect, identify and present BOB items directly to the point of sale, enabling cashiers to add those items directly to the transaction. "LaneHawk captures valuable transaction data to help us track what BOB items we are selling, and whether cashiers are actually ringing up BOB items," said Mike Mays, director of loss prevention at Shoppers. "It is an effective tool for both front-end operations as well as loss prevention."


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