Washington, D.C. The National Retail Federation (NRF) and the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) Wednesday announced that the two organizations have ended merger discussions.
“Following a deliberative process, RILA and NRF have ended discussions aimed at merging the two organizations. NRF and RILA will devote all resources to continuing the work they are each doing to address the serious issues that America’s consumers and retailers are facing in today’s economic environment,” said the two boards of directors in a joint statement.
Tracy Mullin, president and CEO of the NRF, stated in an open letter on Thursday to NRF members: “This week, after a long and deliberate process, the Boards of Directors of both groups have decided to end merger discussions. There is no plan for the two groups to merge at this time -- or for the foreseeable future. As NRF members, you’re likely wondering what this means for you. I’m happy to report that, even during the due diligence and merger process, we have not skipped a beat. We have big plans on the horizon, and I can say for a certainty that NRF’s staff is more committed than ever to serving the needs of all our members, large and small.”
Mullin announced her plans to retire when the merger was announced in April. However, in her statement she said that her retirement has been "put on hold."
RILA President Sandy Kennedy was to oversee the transition between the two groups. She is planning to hold a conference call with members Thursday.
The two retail associations had announced in April they were planning to merge into a single entity to strengthen lobbying on issues ranging from tax policy to labor laws.