Top Things You Missed IN Retail

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IHL Group research finds continuing labor, supplier issues leading to $349B in total sales losses

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Canary Technologies announced that Viceroy Hotels & Resorts has implemented Canary’s digital credit card authorizations at select properties. Canary’s Digital Authorizations product is a secure PCI Level-1 compliant authorization solution that replaces arcane, non-compliant paper/PDF third-party authorization forms and prevents chargebacks and fraud.

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Back in May 2018, Kroger unveiled an exclusive U.S. partnership with U.K.-based online grocery specialist Ocado Group. The aggressive plan called for the companies to identify sites for about 20 automated customer fulfillment centers (CFCs) in the United States over the next three years. These high-tech Kroger CFCs would use Ocado’s vertical integration, machine learning and robotics to fill e-grocery delivery orders, providing the supermarket giant with the capacity, speed and efficiency to serve a market base stretching across more than 2,700 stores in 35 states and the District of Columbia plus vast online properties.

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When the beauty retailer opted to modernize its digital platform, four must-have features topped its shopping list that address rapidly changing consumer demands, says CTO Sree Sreedhararaj.

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Picnic Works, Seattle-based innovator of food automation technology, has officially announced a new partnership with industry-leading Domino's Pizza Enterprises Ltd, the largest franchisee of Domino's stores outside of the USA, to explore how restaurant automation can enhance customer and employee experiences around the globe. Both companies are coming together in Berlin, Germany as part of an innovation demonstration of the Picnic Pizza Station in a Domino's store.

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Pan-African eCommerce giant Jumia has teamed up with logistics company Zipline to deliver household goods to remote parts of Ghana via drone. According to media reports Thursday (Sept. 1), the partnership melds Zipline’s automated, on-demand delivery system with Jumia’s distribution network, which lets customers in more isolated regions purchase and receive electronics, cosmetics and other products.

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Sun & Ski Sports is deploying Carousel Cloud throughout its organization to showcase the products and services it offers to its customer base of outdoor enthusiasts, according to a press release.

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Last month, Digital Wave Technology completed a major project go-live with new customer Hibbett, Inc. The athletic-inspired footwear and fashion retailer went live on the Digital Wave Product Platform after a few months of implementation led by the SaaS provider’s Professional Services team.

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Mars, which makes a wide variety of products, has said its portfolio will be available for same-day delivery through Instacart, a press release said. The partnership will offer convenience through adding Mars products like M&Ms, Snickers, Pedigree, IAMs and other such things to the Instacart catalog and be delivered via the company's retail partners.

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A new Amazon service will allow third-party sellers to use its distribution centers for long-term inventory storage.

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Upper Midwest grocery store chain Hornbacher’s is now accepting Electronic Benefits Transfer Supplemental Nutrition and Assistance Program (EBT SNAP) for same-day delivery and curbside pickup orders placed via Instacart. This move enables EBT SNAP recipients to use their benefits to access fresh food and pantry essentials online from Hornbacher’s eight locations in the Fargo, N.D., and Moorhead, Minn., markets.

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Gap has launched a fulfillment service for retailers called GPS Platform Service, offering omnichannel fulfillment using Gap’s nationwide distribution network and handling tasks including delivery to customers or stores, returns initiation and processing at its fulfillment centers.

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Rossmann Hungary, one of the country’s largest drugstore chains, will partner with RELEX Solutions to automate and optimize their end-to-end supply chain. Rossmann Hungary will turn to RELEX for demand forecasting, automatic replenishment, allocations, and promotion forecasting. The RELEX solution will service 240 stores as well as Rossmann’s distribution center, driving improvements to availability, promotion management, and omnichannel operational efficiency.

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Imports at the nation’s major container ports are expected to fall below last year’s levels for the remainder of 2022. That’s according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates. The report cited ongoing inflation and the Federal Reserve’s efforts to cool demand through higher interest rates.

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LG Electronics has launched its own non-fungible token (NFT) platform, LG Art Lab. Now available in the US on the company’s TVs running webOS 5.0 or later, and accessible directly from the home screen, this enables users to buy and sell digital artwork.

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Ulta Beauty has been using a low-code strategy to facilitate fast-paced experimentation for years. To achieve this, the beauty retailer leverages Iterate.ai’s Interplay to develop, deploy, and scale a number of innovative digital experiences for its customers. Ulta was early to adopt a low-code strategy for rapid application development and iteration.

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Bahrain based Al Safir Hotel & Tower has found its perfect technology partner in RateTiger. The 4-star luxury property has been leveraging eRevMax solutions, including RateTiger Shopper for rate intelligence and managing price parity, Channel Manager for keeping rates and availability in sync across all sales channels as well as Booking Engine for keeping brand.com updated with real-time inventory and rates.

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C.J. Express Group Co., Ltd, one of Thailand’s fastest-growing retailers, and RELEX Solutions, provider of unified supply chain and retail planning solutions, have entered into a supply chain system solution agreement. RELEX will support C.J.’s unique business model for their supermarkets and convenience stores, delivering world-class supply chain and retail planning solution to C.J.’s two DCs and over 900 stores in Thailand.

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Grocers are using an increasingly innovative variety of smart technologies to cut food waste by improving in-store freshness. In July, Wisconsin-based regional grocer Festival Foods announced it was ensuring food safety and minimizing shrink with Internet of Things (IoT) technology.

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Dick's Sporting Goods is partnering with Metrical and using Metrical's predicitive AI decision engine to reduce cart abandonment, boost loyalty and brand support as well as drive revenue and targeted customer engagement and a personalized shopping experience.

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If I look at my household as a business, and strive like any enterprise to make sure my expenses don’t exceed my revenue, what mindset do I adopt post-pandemic for filling my kitchen pantry: just-in-time or just-in-case?

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British jewellery brand Shawn Leane has deployed Brightpearl’s retail operating system.

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Deployment of the Starlink technology across the fleet will begin immediately, leveraging the insights obtained from the trial onboard Freedom of the Seas, which has received tremendous positive feedback from guests and crew.

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ICSC Las Vegas show attendees will soon have a new luxury hotel to stay in—and it’s promising a revolutionary retail configuration. The 67-story, 3,700-room Fontainebleau Las Vegas, located next to the Las Vegas Convention Center’s new West Hall, promises a luxury shopping experience that will heighten traffic by being located next to or directly above its 173,000-sq.-ft. casino, its restaurant row, and other day-long attractions.

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Radisson Hotel Group will now use CellPoint Digital’s full payment orchestration platform to seamlessly integrate new payment methods, new acquirers and stored card facilities. By orchestrating payments across regions and payment methods, CellPoint Digital’s innovative platform will allow Radisson Hotel Group to optimize a multi-acquirer payments model that opens new opportunities for growth.

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The disconnect between what consumers want to buy at their local stores and what they actually do buy continues to drive discontent according to new research from analyst firm IHL Group. The total cost to retailers for Inventory Distortion (combined cost of overstocks and out-of-stocks) amounts to $349b in lost sales for US and Canadian retailers in 2022.

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Dutch retail chain Hema is to trial a software-only point-of-sale (sPOS) solution that enables staff to accept contactless payments on any Android smartphone or tablet without needing any additional hardware or accessories.

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Marco's Pizza has partnered with SOCi Inc., a marketing platform for multi-location brands, to utilize SOCi's local store marketing platform systemwide. The partnership will help raise brand awareness within its communities across the country, according to a press release.

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Fast-casual chain Panera Bread is looking to drive digital orders by extending drive-thru ordering opportunities beyond the restaurant into consumers’ own cars. On Tuesday (Sept. 6), the company kicked off a partnership with Apple’s CarPlay.

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Chief data officer Steve Pimblett is taming the British online retailer’s data with a combination of organizational change and new technology to deliver analytics assets across the enterprise.

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Three Ireland, an Ireland retailer, is creating a store concept that will include touchscreen solutions from eyefactive in a quest to evolve from a classic mobile retailer into a digital lifestyle brand. The technology, according to a press release, will offer a combination of a personal shopping experience with online features — something consumers want, according to Three Ireland research findings.

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Walmart is considering creating a platform highlighting social media influences in a quest to sell third-party goods online. Walmart has filed trademark applications for two platform names, Walmart Creator and Walmart Creator Collective, according to a Reuters report.

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American Eagle, Aerie, Tommy Hilfiger, Finish Line, and JD Sports are among the enterprise retail launch partners for Cash App Pay. Previously a mobile payment option for Square sellers offered by financial services app Cash App, Cash App Pay is now available as an e-commerce payment method across the retail industry.

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Aza Fashions, Mumbai based luxury fashion retailer, recently tied up with N7 – The Nitrogen Platform to improve its online shopping experience for its customers.

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British online lingerie retailer BraForMe says that it has transformed its formerly manual order fulfilment operations with Descartes Systems Group’s cloud-based e-commerce warehouse management solution (WMS).

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Summer 2022 featured scorching temperatures and retail innovations in robotic, cloud and freshness technology. As always, summertime has come and gone fast enough to give some of us the blues. But summer always leaves behind great memories, which this year include several notable retail technology implementations.

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Leveraging the Paytronix platform, Dutch Bros. built its “Dutch Rewards” loyalty app. Dutch Rewards is a points-based loyalty program where customers can earn free drinks, win contests, and collect prizes such as signature Dutch Bros stickers.

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UNTUCKit partnered with Deputy, a scheduling and time keeping solution, in order to speed up processes and improve visibility.

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Hudson Group, a travel experience provider with more than 1,000 stores in airports, commuter hubs, landmarks and tourist destinations across North America, launched its reimagined retail portfolio at the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport, including self-checkout kiosks, according to a press release.

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A vertical craft soda retailer and a legendary independent music label are leveraging augmented reality (AR) in a product labeling partnership.

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Rubio's Coastal Grill is launching an updated rewards program, enabling guests to cash in points for free drinks, desserts, tacos and entrees. Designed to be simple and add value to every purchase, the program marks a change in structure since the program was first rolled out in November 2019, Co-Founder Ralph Rubio said in a company press release.

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Supply chain and last mile challenges have been grabbing headlines for months, and executives from Ulta Beauty, American Eagle and others shared their advice on how retailers can turn these troubles into opportunities at the Home Delivery World logistics conference. The big takeaway: managing costs and keeping shelves stocked while also delivering on speed, efficiency and sustainability have become valuable differentiators that can help any company get ahead of the competition.

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