News

Acellos integrates dispatch tool with location service

BY Dan Berthiaume

Colorado Springs, Colo. – Acellos is integrating its Prophesy Dispatch TMS (transportation management system) productnwith MacroPoint, a service that provides location tracking for brokered loads. The integrated solution provides transportation brokers with a way to automatically track loads including arrival, departure from stops and GPS position updates.

The seamless interface with Prophesy Dispatch automatically passes load info to the MacroPoint site to eliminate the need for re-entry. The system then automatically brings load data back into Prophesy Dispatch including arrival, departure and GPS position data. Check calls are automatically created in dispatch and load ETA’s are automatically updated. The actual route the driver is taking can also be mapped in the Prophesy Dispatch software.

“We are pleased to announce this powerful capability for our brokerage users, said Prophesy senior VP and general manager William Ashburn. “The unique technology provided by MacroPoint allows brokers complete visibility of the loads they have contracted out, providing both real-time accuracy and the ability to address issues as they occur.”

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News

J&R owners prepare for ‘unprecedented’ retailing concept in 2015

BY CSA STAFF

J&R Music and Computer World may not be a retailer with which many are familiar, but it’s been a longtime institution in Lower Manhattan. After 43 years of business, owners Joe and Rachelle Friedman this week issued pink slips to all of the retailer’s employees and closed the doors of the block-long technology and music superstore.

The closing of the iconic store illustrates the challenges that consumer electronics retailers are facing in a quickly evolving landscape. In an open letter addressed to its “loyal customers,” the Friedmans pointed to the manner in which that landscape has changed, from the manner in which consumers listen to music to the manner in which they shop. Although the Friedmans did not specify in the open letter what they meant by the “manner” in which consumers shop nowadays, they seem to be alluding to online shopping — so it’s important to note that while J&R has closed its brick-and-mortar stores, the e-commerce site remains in business.

So what happens to the block-long retail space? According to the open letter, the Friedmans are going to “reinvent” themselves, and plan to rebuild the location into what they call “an unprecedented retailing concept and social mecca.” The couple told the New York Daily News a few days before publishing yesterday the open letter on the J&R site that they are in the market for retail partners to redevelop the site. Undoubtedly, the re-envisioned retailing concept will be designed to appeal to students in the nearby Pace University campus.

DNAinfo New York reported that “employees who were locking up for the night Wednesday could be seen hugging on the showroom floor” and “declined to comment as they left.” According to the publication, the Friedmans anticipate opening the new retail space in 2015.

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OPERATIONS

Overstock.com shuffles executives

BY Dan Berthiaume

Salt Lake City — Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne has relinquished his role as chairman of the company. In other moves, co-president Stormy Simon was named president of the online discount retailer.

Byrne will continue to serve as CEO, while current executive vice chairman Jonathan Johnson assumes the chairman responsibilities Byrnes has held since 2006.

In connection with these changes, Mark Griffin, senior VP and general counsel, has been named as corporate secretary, a position Johnson previously held. David Nielsen will continue in his role of co-president and his responsibilities within the firm will also be enlarged.

Byrne’s latest term as chairman of Overstock.com’s board of directors began in April 2006. Simon was elected to the board in May 2011. Johnson was elected to the board and named executive vice chair in May 2013.

"For 12 years Stormy has been our secret weapon," said Byrne. "Her ideas and her leadership have been crucial to Overstock’s success. I have long maintained that simply as a matter of good institutional design, the roles of chairman and CEO should be split. For that reason my father held the position for years, as much as his health and other duties permitted. It has been back in my hands for some years, but for the completion of many of the duties of chairman I have come to rely more and more on Jonathan Johnson, another long-termer at the company who has made enormous contributions in the areas of finance, legal, and government affairs, and who has also had, at one time or another, nearly every piece of the company reporting to him.”

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