INVENTORY

Karstadt Deploys Item-Level RFID

BY CSA STAFF

When Karstadt, Düsseldorf, Germany, was ready to jump into an item-level RFID (radio-frequency identification) program to manage its apparel category, the chain opted for a flexible Gen 2 solution that promises to deliver more accurate inventory management, improve merchandise visibility and streamline shipment reporting capabilities.

Kardstadt is known for the advanced technology it deploys across its 86 department stores and 32 sporting-goods stores, but it always remains mindful of embarking on disciplined, pragmatic projects. When it planned to move RFID down to an item level, it avoided conventional, yet complex, high-cost solutions, and instead chose the Sensormatic iREAD RFID platform from ADT Security Services, a division of Tyco International, Boca Raton, Fla. The solution, which is based on the EPCglobal Gen 2 standard, will support global interoperability and allow the company to simplify the installation and data distribution of the system across its enterprise.

The chain tested the solution in its 30,000-sq.-meter Düsseldorf store in October. The retailer installed tag readers at the store’s point of receiving; between the back room and front of the store; on shelves; within mobile inventory-management devices; and at the point of sale. Next, the chain added RFID tags to its private-label Goood Jeans line, including jeans, jean jackets, shirts and sweaters.

As RFID-tagged merchandise enters the store, managers can stay abreast of where individual items are located within the store in real time, as well as which styles and sizes are selling best. With real-time access to inventory levels, managers can also instantly order merchandise and avoid out-of-stock scenarios.

“Initial deployment was easier and ongoing operating costs are lower [than other Gen 2 systems] since there is minimal hardware to power and maintain,” said Rainer Jilke, Karstadt’s RFID manager and departmental head of process organization purchasing. “We expect to quickly move toward a positive ROI.”

Karstadt expects the system to speed up inventory management, improve inventory accuracy and visibility in stock levels, and automate reporting. Each benefit will improve efficiencies and operating margins, and enhance the customer shopping experience.

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Stage Stores says Peebles evp to retire

BY CSA STAFF

HOUSTON Stage Stores today announced that Dennis Abramczyk, evp and coo of its Peebles Division, will be retiring after approximately nine years with the company. He will continue to serve in his position until a replacement is found.

Jim Scarborough, chairman and ceo, commented, We want to thank Dennis for his contributions and service to our company, and we wish him well as he begins this new phase of his life. We will immediately begin a search for his successor, and we are pleased that Dennis will be staying on until the conclusion of our search process, as this will ensure a smooth and orderly transition.

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Home Depot to cut 500 HQ jobs

BY CSA STAFF

ATLANTA Home Depot is cutting 500 jobs at its headquarters. According to reports the cuts make up 10% of the 5,000 employees who work at the headquarters.

The cuts are partly due to the struggling U.S. economy, which has hurt market conditions, reports said. Employees were notified of the eliminations today, they will be paid through April 4.

Home Depot reported fiscal 2007 third quarter consolidated net earnings of $1.1 billion, or 60 cents per diluted share, compared with $1.5 billion, or 73 cents per diluted share, in the same period in fiscal 2006.

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