OPERATIONS

Walmart launches prepaid card reload program

BY Staff Writer

Bentonville, Ark. — Wal-Mart Stores said Tuesday that it is launching a new service called Rapid Reload, which allows customers to load money onto prepaid cards.

The service is affiliated with Green Dot Network, InComm’s Vanilla Reload Network and First Data’s Money Network.

For a fee of $3.74, the program allows customers, effective immediately, to add money to their card at a store register.

"Many of our customers continue to seek alternatives that improve both the convenience and cost of every day financial services," said Daniel Eckert, VP of financial services for Walmart U.S. "Through our partnerships with Green Dot, InComm, and First Data, we are ensuring that the majority of prepaid cards available in the U.S. can be reloaded at Walmart.”

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Safeway extends social responsibility program

BY Staff Writer

Pleasanton, Calif. — Grocer Safeway Inc. said Tuesday it has extended its corporate social responsibility commitment with the introduction of a new program it calls Heart of Safeway Pledge, which encourages consumers and communities to be more conservative and socially responsible.

The program focuses on four fundamentals – people, products, community and the planet – and incites participants to make a personal pledge. The first 25,000 pledge-takers will receive a store coupon for $1 off fresh produce and, in turn, the Safeway Foundation will donate a dollar to Feeding America and Food Banks Canada – contributing up to $25,000 toward hunger relief.

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SAP enhances shopper personalization

BY Staff Writer

Dallas — SAP has launched a new service to help retailers influence consumer behavior at the moment of decision.

SAP’s Precision Retailing solution is said to deliver personalized offers and suggestions in real time to consumers across multiple channels, including mobile devices, in-store kiosks and websites. The company also announced the SAP Retail Store Ops Manager mobile app to further enhance in-store productivity.

"Today’s companies want to become more customer-centric, they want to gain insight about each consumer’s behaviors and proclivities based on the volumes of rich data before, during and after each shopping activity," said Greg Girard, program director, merchandise strategies, IDC. "Businesses that are able to do this and deliver personalized and contextualized offers in real time will delight the consumer with increased value and, at the same time, be able to shape profitable demand."

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