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BY CSA STAFF

To improve throughput and customer service during checkout, more than 100

“Customer service is a top priority at Canadian Tire, and self checkout will provide a new and enhanced method to efficiently serve our customers,” said Glenn Butt, senior VP, store design and support, Canadian Tire.

The Toronto-based retailer has been testing the units in a proof-of-concept environment since October 2006. Besides delivering positive results, the units will complement the 468-store chain’s TeamPoS 2000 M units, also from Fujitsu.

“Fujitsu has been a valuable technology partner, and we are confident that U-Scan will be a hit among our dealers and customers,” he said.

Since holidays and special occasions are important to 170-plus-store specialty greeting-card and gifting retailer Papyrus, the Fairfield, Calif.-based company’s retail stores often rented outside storage space to ensure that it had ample product available for seasonal peaks. With the launch of its e-commerce site in 2006 however, this practice became less than adequate.

By adding a warehouse-management solution from Milwaukee-based RedPrairie, however, the retailer gained insight into available inventory. “Now we know what’s selling, and we leave a lot of product in our forward picks,” said Del Duquette, the retailer’s warehouse-management-system manager.

Besides enabling Papyrus to embark on just-in-time store shipments, the solution has helped Papyrus’ inventory accuracy jump from 85% to 99.5%. Papyrus also credits the solution for reducing overall inventory, better managing warehouse space and gaining insight into seasonal trends.

Outdoor lifestyle retailer Gander Mountain used to rely on its business intelligence tool from MicroStrategy Inc., McLean, Va., for sales and inventory management. To give product managers, planners, allocators, buyers and merchandise assistants more visibility into inventory, merchandise and product sales across its enterprise, the retailer recently merged the solution with its data warehouse from Netezza, Framing-ham, Mass.

“Now we can produce consistent reports that help us to make timely, data-driven decisions,” said Kerry Graslewicz, the St. Paul, Minn.-based retailer’s VP merchandise planning and replenishment. “The solution’s Web-based interface gives our users the ability to easily report on data across essential areas of the business.”

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Borders to offer free resolution workshops

BY CSA STAFF

ANN ARBOR, Mich. Borders said Thursday that it is offering customers free in store events throughout the month of January to help them kick start their new year’s resolutions and learn how to keep them through the year. Programs include wellness fairs, yoga classes and diet seminars.

Borders reported that local organizations and community groups will be featured in activities and events at its stores across the country ranging from fitness centers and hospitals to singles groups and retirement centers.

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Schulze sells 440K shares of company stock

BY CSA STAFF

MINNEAPOLIS Best Buy chairman and founder Richard Schulze sold 440,000 shares of Best Buy stock last week valued at $22.4 million. Schulze sold the stock at prices ranging from $50.71 to $51.18 per share. Earlier this month, Schulze sold 2.35 million shares valued at more than $120 million.

While Schulze’s stock sales are considerable, they represent just a fraction of his holdings at Best Buy. He’s estimated to still hold more than 68 million shares of stock amassed during 41 years with the company.

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