Patriot Outfitters aligns channel strategy & tactics with NetSuite
Topeka, Kan. — Popular industry wisdom holds that channel alignment is mainly for the benefit of the consumer, who desires a seamless retail experience and does not want have to start from scratch every time they engage with a retailer via a new channel. While this holds true, channel alignment is also a crucial strategic and tactical necessity for back-end operations.
Take the example of Patriot Outfitters, a multichannel retailer of tactical military equipment that operates in both the B2C and B2B verticals with 23 stores as well as two e-commerce sites and a call center. To keep everything running with military precision, Patriot Outfitters uses unified NetSuite Retail Anyhwere POS, SuiteCommerce and CRM solutions. As a result, Patriot Outfitters is able to simultaneously publish content to both sites, as well as obtain a real-time, cross-channel view of sales, inventory and customers which aids customer service, demand planning and general operational efficiency.
“It’s a strategic initiative for us to have our entire core data consolidated in one location," said Pete Isermann, owner of Patriots Outfitters. “Many channels, one set of consistent data. It’s how the multichannel retailing battle is won.”
Staples, BGCA recruit teen actor to help kids in need
Staples and Boys & Girls Clubs of America have brought teen actor Jake T. Austin on board for the 6th annual Staples for Students national school supply drive.
Austin will be featured in the campaign’s public service announcement, now available online and airing on television and radio stations starting next month.
“I’m so excited to team up with Staples and Boys & Girls Clubs of America for this great cause,” said Austin. “I can’t imagine starting school without the right supplies, so I’m rallying fellow teens to help make a difference in their communities by making sure students have the essential supplies they need to succeed.”
From Sunday, June 30 to Saturday, September 28, Staples customers can donate $1 or more at any Staples store, with 100% of the proceeds benefiting local students. Each Staples store will be matched with a local Boys & Girls Club which will receive the donation to benefit youth who attend the club in time for the new school year. To kick-start the campaign, Staples is donating $125,000 worth of school supplies to the program this year which will be distributed to Boys & Girls Club youth in need.
Since 2008, the campaign has raised nearly $3 million for hundreds of thousands of students in need throughout the country. Past celebrity supporters have included Jordin Sparks, Ciara, Nikki Reed, the cast of Pretty Little Liars and Bella Thorne.
“It’s amazing to see teens and customers rally together each year to give back to their local communities through Staples for Students,” said Alison Corcoran, SVP stores and online marketing, Staples. “Working with Jake T. Austin and Boys & Girls Clubs, we can help ensure that students across the country start the year off right in the classroom.”
Staples is also leveraging social media to reach out to more people. Starting in early July, the company is encouraging teens to visit the Staples for Students Facebook page where Jake will take followers through a series of interactive missions to help drive donations. As missions are completed, teens will be rewarded with donations on their behalf to Boys & Girls Clubs, coupons for school supplies and opportunities to participate in sweepstakes.
There are 4,000 Boys & Girls Clubs in communities nationwide serving nearly 4 million youth ages 6-18 by providing a safe and productive place for young people during the after-school timeframe. Clubs offer caring mentors and programming that help youth, many of whom come from disadvantaged circumstances, advance in the areas of education, health and wellness and develop character and leadership skills.
“A core focus of our mission is to enable youth to be successful throughout school and follow a career or educational plan post-high school to become productive and responsible citizens,” said Kimberly Boyd, VP, program training and youth development services for BGCA. “Partnerships and programs like the Staples for Students national school supply drive provide critical support for Clubs and youth so they have the resources needed to do well in school and create a path to a great future."
Private investment firm acquires Retail Solutions Group
Santa Monica, Calif. — Private investment firm Clearlake Capital Group has begun the process of acquiring the Retail Solutions Group of Agilysys through a newly formed affiliate, Kyrus Solutions. The transaction is expected to close in the early summer.
RSG, which will be renamed Kyrus Solutions upon the close of the transaction, is one of the leading technology and managed services solution providers in the retail market worldwide, offering retail point-of-sale, self-service and wireless mobility solutions and proprietary business consulting, implementation and maintenance, support and other managed services. The company has been operating for 35 years. It streamlines operations, aims to improve the customer experience and increases customer loyalty, all while reducing IT costs. The company will continue to be based in Greenville, S.C. and Paul Civils will remain its GM.
“We are excited to partner with the talented management team of RSG as we make a significant investment in the company and create a strong and focused standalone entity, Kyrus Solutions,” said Behdad Eghbali and Prashant Mehrotra of Clearlake. “With its longstanding reputation for exceptional technology solutions, service delivery, customer focus, and innovative managed services solutions, coupled with Clearlake’s capital resources and operational capabilities, we believe the company is ideally positioned to benefit from significant market trends, including the continuing investment in technology solutions by retailers.”
Keith Bradley, a Clearlake executive operating adviser, will become the company’s executive chairman upon the close of the transaction. Bradley was most recently the president of Ingram Micro North America.
“Kyrus Solutions is a strong platform that is extremely well-positioned for future growth,” added Bradley. “I look forward to working with Paul and the rest of the management team to drive the company’s growth strategy of providing our customers with cutting edge solution innovation and industry leading service and support.”
Clearlake Capital Group focuses on special situations and private equity investments such as corporate divestitures, recapitalizations, buyouts, reorganizations, turnarounds and other equity investments. Clearlake currently manages approximately $1.4 billion of equity capital, and its founding principals have led more than 50 investments totaling more than $3 billion of capital in sectors including business services, communication, consumer products/retail, defense/public safety, energy/power, healthcare, industrials, media and technology.