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Staples introduces Staples Connect app

BY Dan Berthiaume

Framingham, Mass. – Staples is introducing Staples Connect, an offering that lets customers’ home or office technology interact and be controlled by a single app. With the touch of a button, Staples Connect lets customers shut down their office, turning off lights, lowering shades and locking doors, while at the same time turning on their lights and heat at home.

Staples Connect consists of a multi-platform app and universal hub that allow a multitude of devices to talk to each other. The Staples Connect Hub, powered by Linksys, will be available online and in a limited number of Staples stores for $99 this November. Staples Connect uses a platform developed by Zonoff Inc., which features a free, single app. Installation will be available through Staples EasyConnect and can also be performed by customers.

“Staples Connect gives consumers looking for a home or office automation solution a broad selection of products to choose from, featuring the top names in safety, lighting, heating and cooling,” said Mike Edwards, executive VP, merchandising, Staples. “Staples Connect uses products from the biggest and best brands, as well as innovative newcomers, like DoorBot wireless doorbells and the ivee Wi-Fi voice-activated assistant. Our app makes it easy for customers to control their entire home or office from their smartphone, tablet or laptop, wherever they may be.”

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David’s Bridal ensures timely order fulfillment

BY Dan Berthiaume

Atlanta – David’s Bridal is using omnichannel solutions from Manhattan Associates to ensure on-time and accurate delivery of customer orders from across its network. The company is using Manhattan’s order management solution to orchestrate both customer and store replenishment orders to ensure reliable fulfillment.

In addition, the software is used to pool and govern availability of inventory across David’s Bridal’s e-commerce and store distribution network to allow the retailer’s entire supply chain to service each customer’s needs. David’s Bridal uses Manhattan’s order management solutions as the hub of supply and demand across its network. This has allowed the retailer to move beyond visibility and instead use inventory availability information across all of its channels, allowing e-commerce, store and call center operations to work from a single view of the network. This, in turn, results in David’s Bridal being able to match available inventory across the network to an individual customer’s need.

"We are proud to be a long-standing partner with David’s Bridal as they further enhance the customer focus that has been the hallmark of their success,” said Eddie Capel, president and CEO, Manhattan Associates. “Like so many of our omnichannel customers, we’ve worked together to deliver successful projects to increase sales and improve service."

“Our business is founded on offering brides the widest variety of products always delivered on time for her big day, no matter how she chooses to shop with us: online, in our stores, or by phone. It’s critical that we have one system we can rely on to provide inventory availability and manage orders across our network,” said Caryn Furtaw, chief information officer, David’s Bridal. “With Manhattan’s solutions, we have a foundation on which we can continue to build out our omnichannel initiatives.”

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Dover Saddlery explores strategic alternatives

BY Dan Berthiaume

Littleton, Mass. – The board of directors and senior management of Dover Saddlery, Inc. have initiated a process to identify and consider a range of operational, financial and strategic alternatives to better pursue its growth strategy and that may accelerate the enhancement of value for the benefit of its stockholders.

At the direction of the board, the company has engaged Duff & Phelps Securities, LLC as its exclusive financial advisor in connection with the review process. While the board has previously received unsolicited expressions of interest in relation to various potential strategic transactions from time to time, it says it is not currently in discussions with any particular party. Dover Saddlery says it will continue executing its long-term operational plan, which includes the continued rollout of its retail store expansion plan and the integration and realization of the strategic and financial benefits of new retail stores opened during the past several years.

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