OPERATIONS

Wal-Mart names new CEO; company vet Doug McMillon to succeed Mike Duke

BY Marianne Wilson

Bentonville, Ark. – Wal-Mart Stores said Mike Duke will retire as president and CEO, effective Feb. 1, 2014, and will be replaced by veteran company executive Doug McMillon. McMillon, 47, president and CEO of Walmart International, was also named to Wal-Mart’s board, effective immediately.

“This leadership change comes at a time of strength and growth at Walmart,” said Rob Walton, chairman of Walmart’s board of directors. “The company has the right strategy to serve the changing customer around the world, and Doug has been actively involved in this process. The company has a strong management team to execute that strategy. Doug is uniquely positioned to lead our growing global company and to serve the changing customer, while remaining true to our culture and values.”

In his current position, McMillon oversees Wal-Mart’s operations outside the United States, which includes 6,300 stores. From 2006 to 2009, he was president and chief executive of Sam’s Club.

Duke has been president and CEO of Wal-Mart since February 2009. He will continue serving as chairman of the executive committee of the board and, in the tradition of his predecessors, stay on as an advisor to McMillon for one year. The company plans to make an announcement on McMillon’s successor as CEO of Walmart International by the end of the fiscal year.

By the end of the fiscal year — Jan. 31 — the company plans to announce McMillon’s successor as CEO of Walmart International.

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OPERATIONS

Wal-Mart starts Cyber Monday early

BY Dan Berthiaume

San Bruno, Calif. – Wal-Mart is providing a number of special holiday deals to online and mobile shoppers as part of an early Cyber Monday promotion that begins Saturday, Nov. 30. In addition, Walmart’s mobile app customers, Facebook fans and email subscribers will be among the first to receive invitations to an early shopping event on Sunday, Dec. 1, featuring up to 20 of the best Cyber Monday items while supplies last, before they are widely available.

Walmart.com has tripled the number of early access items compared to last year’s Cyber Week event, when the retailer offered one early access item per day. Starting Nov. 22, nearly all Walmart.com items (and half of Marketplace items) are eligible for free shipping on orders over $35. Customers can also upgrade to a faster 3-5 day option for $2.97, with most orders arriving in three days or less, without a subscription fee. In addition select Cyber specials will be available for customers to order online and pick up at their local Walmart store that same day, from Saturday, Nov. 30, through Cyber Monday, Dec. 2.

"Last year, Cyber Monday was our best sales day in Walmart.com’s history and we’ve spent all year preparing to make it even better for customers," said Joel Anderson, president and CEO, Walmart.com U.S. "More than two-thirds of people who plan to shop in our stores on Black Friday also plan to shop Cyber Monday.** Every year there’s a bigger appetite for Cyber Monday, so we’re giving our customers great deals and rolling back our free shipping minimum to $35, helping them extend their budgets this holiday season."

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Canada’s Jean Coutu Group selects Microsoft Dynamics for Retail

BY Marianne Wilson

Redmond, Wash. — Canadian pharmacy retailer The Jean Coutu Group Inc. has selected Microsoft Dynamics for Retail to manage all its retail operations, from its headquarters down to the point-of-sale devices in stores. Jean Coutu will deploy Microsoft Dynamics to more than 400 stores, 3,000 POS systems and 11,500 devices with implementation to start in 2014.

"We knew we wanted a system that we could scale for future growth and gave people across the company the information they need to do their jobs. Microsoft Dynamics provides that flexibility along with an easy, familiar interface," said Alain Boudreault, VP and chief information officer, Jean Coutu Group. "This will help us better serve our customers now and in the future."

Jean Coutu employs more than 19,000 people and operates a network of more than 400 franchised stores in the Canadian provinces of Quebec, New Brunswick, and Ontario, under the banners of PJC Jean Coutu, PJC Clinique, PJC Sante and PJC Sante Beaute. Besides running these retail operations, the company also responds to the needs of its franchise network by providing an array of technical and professional support services, as well as the supply, warehousing and delivery of products.

Jean Coutu needed a new, integrated system to manage its retail operation because its current system was reaching the end of its life, and wanted one solution to cover the whole spectrum of retail operations. As the selection process began, Jean Coutu managers discovered that one solution for all their needs was nearly impossible to find, and they decided to consider two solutions: one for the retail headquarters and store management, and one for the POS. But they found that Microsoft Dynamics for Retail would meet all of its needs in one solution.

"The fact that Microsoft is providing us with an end-to-end solution makes it so much easier to envision our future technology plans and the future of our retail business," Boudreault said. "We are also considering deploying Windows tablets as part of our overall mobile POS strategy and are excited at the potential Microsoft can bring to PJC."

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