Famous Footwear gains profitable new footing
Improved conversion and customer service at Brown Shoe’s Famous Footwear stores are the anticipated benefits of a new merchandise allocation and replenishment solution the company has deployed.
The 1,041 unit Famous Footwear division of Brown Shoe recently announced it had deployed the Q Allocation and Replenishment solution from Minneapolis-based Quantum Retail Technology. The Quantum solution works in conjunction with Famous Footwear’s legacy JDA solution, according to the company, to produce a wide range of benefits.
“Our selection of Q was based on our desire to drive conversion and turn through improved service levels,” said Mike Edwards, Vice President of Merchandising and Sales Operations for Brown Shoe/Famous Footwear. “We knew the key to doing this was developing a better understanding of demand at the item, size and width level in each of stores. With Q, we are able to optimize our inventory by leveraging these insights within our allocation process.”
According to the company, it has already seen an uptick is store service levels and conversion across its full range of inventory as well as better balancing of inventory across store locations leading to a greater ability to anticipate and respond to demand at store level.
“Partnering with Famous Footwear to drive their business has been a win/win or them and for us,” said Morgan Day, Vice President of Corporate and Account Strategy at Quantum. “Q’s ability to be deployed within any existing client environment makes it the best choice for retailers with legacy systems that are grappling with the complexities of today’s retail environment and who need advance optimization capabilities within the confines of their existing infrastructure.”
Express, Sycamore end acquisition talks
Columbus, Ohio – Express Inc. and private-equity firm Sycamore Partners announced that, despite having worked together in good faith towards a transaction during the past several months, discussions regarding Sycamore’s expressed interest in acquiring Express have been terminated. The companies said that discussions were halted due to the unavailability of financing on commercially acceptable terms.
In June, Express said it had been approached by Sycamore about a potential deal. Sycamore Partners has a 9.8% stake in Express.
In connection with the termination, Sycamore has agreed to be bound until June 15, 2015, by restrictions on disclosure of certain information and its ability to be involved in a third-party attempt to purchase Express.
NRF disappointed in Supreme Court refusal to review swipe fees
Washington, D.C. – The National Retail Federation (NRF) has publicly expressed disappointment at the U.S. Supreme Court’s announcement that it would not review an appellate court ruling on whether the Federal Reserve set a 2011 cap on debit card swipe fees higher than the level sought by Congress in legislation passed the year before.
The court has turned down a petition asking the justices to review the case that was filed in August 2014 by NRF, the National Association of Convenience Stores, the Food Marketing Institute, the National Restaurant Association, NRF member Boscov’s Department Store, and NACS member Miller Oil Co., all of whom were plaintiffs in the original lawsuit.
Under the Dodd-Frank Consumer Protection and Wall Street Reform Act of 2010, the Federal Reserve initially proposed a cap no higher than 12 cents, but the Federal Reserve Board of Governors eventually settled on 21 cents after lobbying from the financial services industry.
While lower than the average of 45 cents before the cap was set, NRF argued that the 21-cent figure included costs that went beyond those allowed under the legislation and filed suit against the Fed in U.S. District Court in 2011 along with other retail groups. In July 2013, Judge Richard Leon ruled in NRF’s favor and ordered the Fed to recalculate the cap at a lower level, but the Fed appealed. In March 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia overturned Leon’s ruling, citing “ambiguity” in the 2010 law and saying the Fed based the cap on a “reasonable interpretation” of the measure.
“The court’s decision is disappointing because it leaves merchants and their customers paying far more than intended by Congress,” NRF senior VP and general counsel Mallory Duncan said. “Federal agencies have flexibility in implementing our nation’s laws, but do not have the discretion to blatantly ignore the wishes of elected officials and the clear language of the statute. The court’s ruling means retailers will keep paying billions of dollars more than they should, and that fee-hungry banks will continue to rake in unearned profits that ultimately come out of consumers’ pockets. We will continue to press the issue.”