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C&K Markets chooses Retalix to cut costs, ease PCI compliance

BY Staff Writer

Dallas — Grocery chain C&K Market Inc. said it has deployed Connected Payments from Retalix, rolling out the cloud-based, software-as-a-service payments system across its 61 Ray’s Food Place, Ray’s Shop Mart and C&K Market banners. The grocer also uses Retalix POS software across its enterprise.

Alan Nidiffer, chief information officer of C&K Market, said Connected Payments will help his company better manage compliance-related transaction data, while improving overall POS efficiency and reducing costs. The Connected Payments subscription-based model eliminated all of C&K’s up-front license costs for the new system, while providing operational efficiency from centralized online reporting and analysis, according to Nidiffer.

"We wanted to effectively meet increasing PCI standards, and Connected Payments provided the best solution because it actually removes all cardholder data from our stores," said Nidiffer. "The result is optimal transaction data security. In addition, Connected Payments has helped us reduce our electronic payments costs overall, and it provides centralized reporting that improves our operational performance."

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NPD: Last minute BTS spending on the rise

BY CSA STAFF

PORTWASHINGTON, N.Y. — Once again, consumers are putting off back-to-school shopping until the last minute, but retailers can take solace in the fact that they intend to spend more this year.

According to NPD’s survey, 31% of respondents said they plan to spend more this year, compared with 22% who made that claim in 2011. The number of consumers who plan to spend less went from 38% in 2011 to 24% this year, while those who plan to spend the same rose from 40% to 46%.

When it comes to when they plan to shop, the numbers were essentially the same from 2011 to 2012. This year, 37% shoppers said they will finish their back-to-school shopping by Aug. 1 compared with 38% from the year before. This year, 58% of consumers plan to have their shopping done by Sept. 1, compared with 57% for the prior year.

“Retailers should plan to see a rise in sales when the temperature drops,” said Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst, The NPD Group, Inc. “The summer heat wave in much of the country is a possible contributor to the delay in back-to-school shopping.”

Where consumers spend their money this year has shifted, with the bulk of the spending to be done at department stores (26% of those surveyed), followed by footwear specialty stores (25%) and online (16%).

“There will be waves of sales growth – in the early stages, school supplies and electronics will do well," said Cohen. "And when school is back in session apparel and footwear will show some true promise, driving shoppers to department, sporting goods, and specialty stores."

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Facility companies merge to create leading provider of retail services

BY CSA STAFF

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Retail facility maintenance and janitorial service provider, Expert JMS, headquartered in Knoxville, Tenn., and NJS Indoor and Outdoor Services, headquartered in Mt. Laurel, N.J., have combined to create a leading North American provider of quality retail facility services.

The transaction closed Tuesday, with the continuing enterprise consisting of the combined operations of Expert JMS, NJS and Advantage Janitorial Solutions, an affiliate of NJS. The newly combined entity will approach the market as Expert NJS.

"Our similar cultures, along with our tandem focus on service quality, make this a very powerful combination," said Milton Cohen, chairman and CEO. "Over 75% of our combined revenue is from 10-year plus customers with whom we are either the sole or largest provider of floor care and janitorial service. As the flight to quality continues, we’ll be in a very strong position," he added.

In connection with the combination, Jim Hoff, CEO of NJS, will be joining the company’s executive committee as EVP and co-COO, with primary operational responsibility for the Company’s floor care and janitorial business. Susan Dykman, Expert JMS’ EVP co-COO, will continue in her role with responsibility for business development and repair and maintenance operations, and Phillip Pacey, Expert JMS’ CFO, will continue serving in his role.

The combined company provides facility services in North America across a broad cross section of trades. The company’s floor care and janitorial business provides hard and soft surface floor care, window and awning cleaning, power washing and other indoor and outdoor janitorial services. The company’s repair and maintenance business provides all other indoor and outdoor services, from HVAC to routine plumbing, on both a scheduled and demand basis.

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