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SAS and 360pi team up to help retailers price right

BY Marianne Wilson

Ottawa, Canada — 360pi, a leading provider of retail price and product intelligence, announced a collaborative effort with SAS, a leader in business analytics software and services. The goal is to allow retailers who combine 360pi’s competitive price intelligence with SAS’ revenue optimization engine to gain full real-time visibility into competitive pricing to make more profitable pricing decisions.

SAS’ revenue optimization engine will receive a feed of real-time competitive price intelligence from 360pi’s 360price solution, in turn helping retailers optimize pricing and promotions. Armed with a powerful automated decision engine that takes into account daily price changes on millions of products by hundreds of competitors, retailers are able to right-price to any market at any time.

"Competitive intelligence is a vital element in pricing decisions," said Kevin MacDonald, SAS retail product manager. "The combination of 360pi’s best-in-class competitive price intelligence with our pricing and analytics technology will help drive increased revenues and margins for retailers."

"The 360pi team is excited to work with SAS to empower retailers to make more profitable pricing decisions on thousands of products daily," stated Alexander Rink, CEO of 360pi. "SAS has a stellar reputation in the industry and serves a who’s who roster of clients, such as Staples, Macy’s and Vistaprint. 360pi’s competitive price intelligence and insights, combined with the SAS revenue optimization suite, form a potent combination that will deliver compelling benefits for any retailer."

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Whole Foods’ record revenue increase not enough for Street

BY CSA STAFF

Despite the Easter holiday shift, Whole Foods reported second-quarter revenue of $3.32 billion, a record increase of 10% from the prior-year quarter. But the record was not enough for Wall Street, which expected $3.34 billion.

The company’s earnings per share of 38 cents for the quarter also came in below expectations of 41 cents per share.

Comparable store sales, including the negative impact of approximately 50 basis points from Easter shifting from the second quarter last year to the third quarter this year, increased 4.5% on top of a 6.9% increase in the prior year. The spread between comparable store and identical store sales growth for the quarter due to five relocations and one expansion was approximately 50 basis points.

"The rapidly growing demand for fresh, healthy foods affirms our mission for the last 36 years and highlights the increasing growth opportunity ahead of us," said co-founder and co-CEO John Mackey. "Whole Foods Market is the premier brand in natural and organic foods, with unparalleled quality standards and the broadest selection. As we continue to innovate and evolve at a fast pace, we are confident in our ability to gain market share and expect our sales to approach $25 billion during the next five years."

Since the end of the first quarter, the company has added eight stores in six new markets. In the second quarter, the company opened three new stores. So far in the third quarter, the company has opened one new store and completed its acquisition of four New Frontiers Natural Marketplace stores in Flagstaff, Prescott and Sedona, Ariz.; and San Luis Obispo, Calif. The company expects to open seven additional stores in the third quarter and another 11 to 14 stores in the fourth quarter.

Whole Foods currently operates 379 stores totaling approximately 14.4 million sq. ft. and expects to cross the 500-store mark in 2017. Longer term, the company still sees demand for 1,200 Whole Foods Market stores in the United States.

The company has increased its development pipeline to a record 114 stores with the signing of nine new leases, including one relocation, totaling approximately 410,000 sq. ft. These leases include three new markets and are located in Fayetteville, Ariz.; Honolulu, Hawaii; Indianapolis, Ind.; Metuchen, N.J.; Chappaqua, N.Y.; Buffalo, N.Y.; Lower Gwynedd Township, Pa.; Fort Worth, Texas; and Richmond, Va.

Looking ahead, the company is revising its fiscal year 2014 outlook and now expects sales growth of approximately 11%, comparable store sales growth of 5% to 5.5% and diluted earnings per share of $1.52 to $1.56.

The company expects the Easter shift to positively impact comparable store sales growth in the third quarter by approximately 50 basis points.

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Walmart awards TCP 2013 Hardware/Paint Supplier of the Year

BY CSA STAFF

Walmart has named Technical Consumer Products as a 2013 Hardware/Paint Supplier of the Year in appreciation for the company’s support, outstanding contributions and overall operational fulfillment.

TCP, a leader in energy efficient lighting innovations, currently supplies more than 50 lighting products to Walmart, including LED and CFL light bulbs. Walmart has honored TCP with seven awards for supplier excellence in less than three years.

“TCP is committed to supporting Walmart’s growth in the lighting category,” said Jim Connolly, SVP of TCP’s retail division. “We are honored to be recognized for our contributions to the lighting category and look forward to the opportunity to provide Walmart and its customers with superior quality products at an affordable price point.”

The Hardware/Paint Supplier of the Year award recognizes suppliers for overall operational fulfillment, strong fulfillment rates, outstanding support and contributions and a commitment to maintaining high quality products at a low cost.

In less than three years, TCP has received seven awards for its operational support as a top Walmart supplier including Supplier of the First Quarter 2013, Supplier Award of Excellence: Price 2013, Supplier Award of Excellence: Product 2012, and Supplier of the Fourth Quarter 2012 for its quality, execution and understanding of the market to help Walmart better serve its millions of customers.

Founded in 1993 with its North America headquarters in Aurora, Ohio, Technical Consumer Products is a leader in energy efficient lighting innovations. TCP’s extensive product offerings include LED lamps and fixtures, compact fluorescent lamps, energy efficient halogen lamps, exit and emergency lighting, HID, decorative and outdoor fixtures, ballasts and fixtures and linear lamps.

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