Tommy Bahama adopts SaaS IT model
San Diego – Tommy Bahama is employing the IT Service Automation Application Suite from cloud-based IT services provider ServiceNow to automate IT functions such as incident management, change management, problem management, configuration management database and service catalog. The specialty apparel brand is also using the SaaS-based Orchestrate solution from ServiceNow to streamline the hiring and training process.
“We selected ServiceNow to help us evolve the way we deliver IT services,” said Stewart Hubbard, vice president of IT for Tommy Bahama. “ServiceNow’s modern approach to IT service automation will allow us to provide higher levels of customer service across our corporate, retail and restaurant users.”
AutoZone has ‘solid’ Q3
MEMPHIS, Tenn. — AutoZone reported net sales of $2.2 billion for the 12-week third quarter period ended May 4, an increase of 4.5% from $2.1 billion for the same period last year. Domestic same-store sales decreased 0.1% for the quarter.
Net income for the quarter was $266 million, an increase of 6.8% from $249 for the same period last year. Meanwhile, gross profit was 51.8%, versus 51.6% for last year’s quarter. The increase in gross margin was primarily driven by lower acquisition costs, partially offset by the inclusion of AutoAnything, an online retailer of specialized automotive products.
"Our organization executed our game plan and delivered another quarter of solid performance,” said Bill Rhodes, chairman, president and CEO. “While sales results for the quarter finished below our expectations, we were pleased to see noticeable improvements in our performance during the final four weeks of the quarter, specifically in our more recently challenged Northeastern and Midwestern markets."
Rhodes believes the company’s ongoing efforts to improve its inventory assortment and accelerate its deployment will have meaningful impacts on results for upcoming quarters.
During the quarter, AutoZone opened 33 new stores, relocated three stores and closed one store in the U.S. and opened seven new stores in Mexico. As of May 4, the company had 4,767 stores in 49 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico in the U.S., 341 stores in Mexico and one store in Brazil for a total store count of 5,109.
Parago study: Shoppers seek deals
Lewisville, Texas – The hunt for the deal has grown significantly in the past year and is now a behavior consistently seen in shoppers from all demographics, according to an annual shopper study by Parago.
The report, “Let’s Make a Deal,” revealed that deal seeking is no longer just trendy or born completely out of necessity. Shoppers not only are continuing to seek out the very best prices, but are willing to go out of their way to save even a little bit.
Consumers are rapidly adopting all forms of deal seeking — especially rebates — through mobile, social and online platforms. Searching for and finding the best value is a practice now cemented in consumers’ path to purchase due to several factors: greater price sensitivity, reduced perceived spending power, advancing mobile technology and easier access to deals online and via social networks.
Key findings from the research include:
Price sensitivity is up significantly: Nearly three in four shoppers are more sensitive to price this year due in part to 42% of those surveyed feeling their purchasing power has decreased.
Deal-seeking behavior continues to grow: Before shopping, 80% of consumers look for deals, rebates and the best prices; only 69% did so in 2012.
The majority prefer rebates to instant discounts: All income levels believe rebates are easy to complete and worth the extra step for the deeper savings earned vs. instant discount offers.
Mobile deal finding jumps: This year, 46% of consumers shop where they can use their smartphones to check prices; only 11% did so last year.
Demand for deals in social networks: 57% of consumers would like access to exclusive values via social media.
“Finding deals is emotionally rewarding to consumers, as it makes them feel as though they are doing everything they can to maintain their standard of living,” said Rodney Mason, CMO of Parago, a global incentives and engagement company.
The study, Mason added, sends a clear message to marketers: Shoppers’ appetites for deals and discounts can be fulfilled in a variety of ways, especially via mobile and social as well as rebates, which consumers understand offer deeper discounts than other deals.