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Industry News - September 25th, 2009



Denim Enterprises Rolls Out POS, BI and Planning Software

Denim Enterprises selects Island Pacific Planning along with the AdvanceRetail POS system for installation throughout the company's Australian and New Zealand locations.

Denim Enterprises also plans to implement the AdvanceReports Business Intelligence solution, which provides detailed management information reports on key aspects of the business operation. It also includes the AdvanceCard Gift Card solution and the Island Pacific Planning solution. These solutions are fully integrated with AdvanceRetail POS, and the total system will be rolled out to all company stores over the next 2 months.

Denim Enterprises is headquartered in Melbourne, Australia and operates the G-Star Concept Stores throughout Australia and New Zealand. From its conception in 1989, G-Star (Amsterdam) has been known for its innovative and cutting edge style in the world of denim and luxury street wear.


Pier 1 Plans to Invest $7 Million on Technology Upgrades

Pier 1 unveils its plans to spend $7 million on existing stores and technology upgrades over the next year, according to Charles Turner, CFO and Executive Vice President of Pier 1. Pier 1 reported that total sales for its second quarter declined to $287 million from $320 million reported in the year-ago quarter.

The retailer plans to cut back by closing approximately 50 locations this year. In continuing rental reduction efforts, Pier 1 has reached principle rental reduction agreements on approximately 30 percent of our stores. These agreements will result in total rental savings of approximately $11 million in fiscal 2010.

Beyond closing underperforming stores, Pier 1 announced it plans to spend twice as much in marketing dollars in its third quarter compared to its second quarter, in order to support the upcoming holiday selling season. Its marketing campaigns include direct mail, Internet, newspaper, and social networking.

According to Turner, "Our private label cardholder continues to be an important target of our marketing efforts. Our rewards program continues to attract new cardholders each month and drive repeat purchases from existing cardholders. Our average ticket on the private label card is three times the normal amount. For the quarter, sales on the card were 26.1 percent of U.S. sales, up from 24.4 percent in the year-ago quarter."


1-800-FLOWERS.COM Launches on Google Android

The 1-800-FLOWERS.COM mobile storefront is now available as a downloadable storefront application for Google's Android platform. This launch extends the existing 1-800-FLOWERS.COM mobile strategy built on Digby's Mobile Commerce Suite Platform - which includes the mobile commerce Web storefront and Mobile Gift Store applications for the iPhone and Blackberry.

Customers are now able to easily access popular products from 1-800-FLOWERS.COM when shopping on their Android phones. Users can view product descriptions and full-color images, select addresses from their online account or local address books and place secure transactions with password-protected purchasing.

"1-800-FLOWERS.COM is dedicated to creating an exceptional customer experience," said Jim McCann, CEO and founder of 1-800-FLOWERS.COM. Digby has enabled our customers to seamlessly view flowers and gifts from their mobile device."


Sears Builds Drop-Ship Supplier Network

Sears Canada has teamed up with CommerceHub to provide supplier integration to build its drop-ship supplier network. CommerceHub will provide a direct connection to Sears Canada's existing order management systems for processing purchase orders, order acknowledgements, inventory and fulfillment data with drop-ship suppliers.

"We are building a drop-ship network as part of our online strategy to increase product selection and inventory efficiency," said Simon Rodrigue, Sears Canada AVP of E-Commerce. "We selected the CommerceHub platform to reliably integrate our existing systems with new and current suppliers."

Sears Canada now has the ability to bring on new suppliers and expand product selection with all its suppliers without incurring inventory and handling costs. The Sears Canada drop-ship supplier network enables orders to be sent directly to suppliers, manufacturers and distributors who then fulfill and ship the merchandise directly to customers.

The Supply-on-Demand platform also enables purchase orders to be sent to each supplier with all the information required to create customized Sears Canada branded packing slips for direct-ship customer orders..


The Army and Air Force Exchange Service Add Task Manager

The Army and Air Force Exchange (AAFES), which operates more than 3,150 retail facilities, adds Reflexis Task Manager. The retailer implements task management in order to boost efficiency, ensure compliance and improve customer service.

After a thorough review, AAFES selected Task Manager due to the breadth of the solution and its large installed base.

"The mission of AAFES is to provide quality merchandise and services to military service members and their families at competitively low prices while providing a dividend to contribute to morale, welfare, and recreation programs for our armed services," said Darrick Smeby, Senior Project Manager for AAFES. "Streamlining operations and improving efficiencies are critical in allowing us to meet both aspects of this dual mission."


Scandinavia’s Largest Department Store, Gekås, Adds WMS

Scandinavia's largest department store, Gekas Ullared AB, implements InVision Enterprise WFM for staff scheduling. The retailer uses WMS to optimize the staff planning of 1,100 employees at Gekas' hyperstore.

The Swedish department store has decided to implement all modules of InVision's employee scheduling software to cover the entire workforce management process - from demand-oriented forecasting to scheduling, optimization, integrated time management. The system also will be used to monitor and manage schedules.

Using WFM, Gekas intends to match the deployment of its in-store employees with actual customer footfall and thus improve customer service while avoiding over- and under-staffing. Applying the integrated time management features of the WFM solution the department store will establish an efficient payroll processing system. Additionally, employees will be able to enter preferred working times online, and these choices will be taken into account within the scheduling process.

InVision Enterprise WFM is scheduled to go live at the beginning of 2010.

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