Plug and Play CEO Corner: Santosh Gopal, Ship2MyID
What does your company do?
Ship2MyID is a patented shipping enablement platform that allows consumers to ship products to others without the need of the receiver’s mailing address. The world is going social and mobile. However, neither carry mailing addresses.
Without mailing addresses, products cannot be shipped. Ship2MyID comes as a shipping option at merchant checkout, where the buyer can provide either a cell phone number, email or any social media ID of the receiver, when they don’t have the actual mailing addresses. Ship2MyID takes care of the rest.
In a way, it is like PayPal for shipping. Ship2MyID provides 100% control to the receiver and they can control where to receive, whom to receive from and when to receive. Addresses are never shared between users or sold to third parties. We plan to start with online gifting and social samples, and then get into offline shipping without addresses.
How do retailers leverage your solution?
Ship2MyID offers an easy integration to merchant checkout. It has been designed to seamlessly adapt to the changing structure of mobile commerce, without changing the buying behavior of the consumers. Some of the benefits to retailers are generating new transactions, which were not possible before.
In addition, with every new transaction, the retailer gets a new impression and a new prospect who is already using a product Retailers can also leverage the growing community of Ship2MyID users, who are habituated to shop without mailing addresses, as well as sell more gifts easily while cutting down marketing costs.
Retailers can also generate dynamic recommendations based on future social events and book transactions in advance, as well as obtain an omnichannel view of a customer
What led to the development of the company?
I have more than 25 years of experience in technology-related business including software education, outsourced product development, digital publishing, direct marketing and gifting marketplaces. Ship2MyID represents an “address-free” future and was born out of the expectations of a seven-year-old Millennial kid waiting on the shipment of his tablet. He had received an email about the shipment while he was in Virginia, but the tablet shipped to his home address in California. He wondered, “If email can find me in Virginia, why can’t my shipment come there too?”
Millennial kids want the freedom and flexibility of a virtual world. With Internet comes convenience, accessibility and privacy, and all this is driving the digital world exponentially. Ship2MyID aims to bring those digital world benefits to the “real world.”
Plug and Play is a global accelerator brings together retailers and tech start-ups that offer specific technology and expertise that can relieve merchants’ pain points. Chain Store Age’s Customer Disruption newsletter provides a Q&A with the CEO of one of those companies in each issue.
Same store sales at Hhgregg drop 10%
Hhgregg President and CEO Dennis May played the “pleased with significant progress on transformation efforts” card after the company reported abysmal sales for its fourth quarter ended March 31.
The retailer said same store sales decreased 10%. Net sales decreased 9.8% to $485.6 million. Revenue dropped 10% to $485.6 million. The company had a loss of $25.2 million, or 91 cents a share, wider than its prior-year quarter loss of $7.2 million, or 25 cents a share.
“Our fourth quarter results were challenging, however, I am pleased with the significant progress we have made on our transformational efforts,” said Dennis May, president and CEO. “Our top fiscal 2016 initiatives are centered on improving our cost structure through the optimization of our marketing dollars, the reduction of our operating expenses and more efficiently managing our working capital, along with reversing our negative sales trends.”
The retailer has grappled with lower demand for electronics for several quarters and begun a shift toward selling higher margin items, as well as increased advertising and slashed expenses.
“On the expense side, we have identified over $50 million of savings. These savings are inclusive of both marketing and operating expenses,” May added” “We plan to reduce and re-invest advertising dollars to more effective channels, further reducing our reliance on print media. Additionally, we have identified several areas throughout the company where we believe we can be more efficient with our spend. In addition to operating expenses, we will also be working to selectively rationalize our footprint and work to free up working capital through inventory optimization. From a top-line perspective, we will continue to expand our Fine Lines departments within the appliance category given the strong results we are seeing from our Fine Lines business, continue to focus on sales of larger screen 4K TV’s, and continue to refine our offerings within our other categories. We remain confident that through the combination of our savings and revenue initiatives, we will return to positive adjusted EBITDA in fiscal year 2016.”
HHgregg operates more than 200 stores in the United States.
Dillard’s posts drop in same store sales
Dillard’s joined Macy’s, Kohl’s and JCPenney in reporting lackluster results as a result of weak sales in the first quarter.
For the first quarter ended May 2, Dillard’s reported of $109.6 million, or $2.66 a share, compared with $111.7 million, or $2.56 a share, in the prior year quarter. Same-store sales declined 1%.
"We are disappointed with our first quarter performance. Our 1% sales decline hampered our ability to leverage operating expenses and to drive net income growth," said Chief Executive William Dillard. "Although inventory is higher than we would like, we believe the levels are manageable."
Net sales at Dillard's were $1.574 billion, up about 1.5% from the same quarter last year. Net sales includes the operations of the company's construction business, CDI Contractors LLC. Total merchandise sales, which excludes CDI, were $1.518 billion, down about 1% from the same time last year.
The Texas-based retailer said sales trends were strongest in the juniors' and children's apparel category followed by shoes and ladies' apparel. Sales were notably weak in the home and furniture category. Sales trends were also strongest in the Eastern region, Dillard’s said, followed by the Central and Western regions, respectively.
Regarding the impact of the Texas economy, the company noted that sales in Texas performed slightly below the company average during the first quarter.
Dillard’s also announced that it has issued a new $1 billion senior unsecured credit facility, enhancing the company's liquidity. The new unsecured facility replaces the company's $1 billion secured credit facility and underscores Dillard's continued improvement in financial strength.
As of May 2, the company operated 274 Dillard’s locations and 23 clearance centers spanning 29 states and an Internet store at www.dillards.com.