logo

RBM TECHNOLOGIES RAISES $7 MILLION TO FUEL GROWTH AND INNOVATION

BOSTON, MA – May 27, 2015 – RBM Technologies, Inc. – the leader in software-as-a-service (SaaS) visual merchandising solutions for retailers — today announces the closing of a $7 million financing to fund its rapid growth and product innovation.  Existing investor Spring Lake Equity Partners is providing an additional $3 million in equity financing, and Bridge Bank is committing up to $4 million in debt financing.  With this new capital infusion and the recent addition of top quality executive talent, RBM is poised to globally expand its cloud-based SaaS software – Visual Merchandising Manager (VMM), the emerging standard for retail merchandising campaign planning, communication and in-store execution.

This new round of financing brings the total capital raised by RBM to $16.5 million, further establishes the company as the leader in retail in-store execution, and enables aggressive expansion.

“The financial strength that Bridge Bank brings, with the renewal of the significant resources of top tier investors Spring Lake, accelerates RBM’s momentum in product leadership and market expansion,” states RBM Technologies CEO E.Y. Snowden.  “We appreciate the confidence they are demonstrating in how VMM is fundamentally altering the retail landscape.”

RBM Technologies is the leading SaaS retail solution for merchandising campaign planning, communication and in-store execution. VMM helps retailers to reduce waste and stranded inventory, accelerate marketing responsiveness, and increase revenue. Since 2001, RBM has helped global brands and leading retailers carry out national merchandising campaigns with consistent execution that is localized to each store’s unique attributes. RBM’s suite of solutions gives retailers worldwide real-time visibility into each store to drive precise counts for product and merchandising materials, consistent presentation and messaging, and verified compliance for each fixture in each store. Leading retailers are using VMM to create consistent customer experiences with the right product and the right messaging, at the right time, and in the right place.

“Over the last year, RBM has demonstrated it is uniquely positioned to lead retail innovation in visual merchandising,” says partner Dan MacKeigan, Spring Lake Equity Partners.  “Spring Lake is in the business of funding growth and innovation, and we are thrilled to lead this new round.”

“Bridge Bank provides innovative technology companies with customized solutions and industry expertise to help them realize their goals,” says Dick Sweeney, Bridge Bank’s northeast region director and market manager of its Technology Banking division. “We are excited to partner with RBM Technologies and Spring Lake Equity Partners as RBM – a well-established innovator in the visual merchandising sector – expands its reach globally for VMM,” added Sweeney.

SAP_voiceamerica_RBM_technologies

Dialing it In: Telcos Look to Big Data and New Services

A new series sponsored by SAP on Voiceamerica.com presents a weekly coffee break talk with some of the business world’s hottest industry trends. Last week, experts EY Snowden, RBM Technologies; Johan Bergh, DigitalRoute; and Rick Constanzo, SAP called into ‘Coffee Break” to talk about the latest trends in the telco industry and how telco’s should be embracing technology and big data to provide customers with an optimal experience.

Telcos provide the backbone of our always-connected digital lives. As customers, we expect a dazzling array of services that were considered virtual magic, or perhaps elite perks, a mere 25 years ago. But deregulation and the web have eroded their traditional revenue streams.With declining voice revenues and cloud-based data taking over, how can Telcos make us happy, stay profitable, and still keep the digital foundation of our economy at 5-nines reliability (hint: remember the landline)?

Click below to listen to Dialing it In: Telcos Look to Big Data and New Services

http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2439/business-innovation-with-game-changers-presented-by-sap

NRF15_merchandising_RBMtechnologies

Retail’s Big Show 2015 – Best Featured Products

In the iLab (Booth 1151), NRF attendees were able to see, touch and experience some of the most interesting and innovative products finding their way into the marketplace (and some that are still on the drawing board) from the worlds of health, food and beauty to home decor, personal technology, wearables, sustainable living and more. MerchandisingMatters was able to pick out some of the most unique and eye-popping products in the consumer electronics industry:

Petchatz

PetChatz is a first-of-kind Greet & Treat videophone that allows pet parents to interact with their pet from anywhere. With PetChatz, you can see, hear, speak to, provide a comforting scent and give your pet a treat using a smart phone or computer.

petchatz_NRF15

HAPIfork

The HAPIfork, is an electronic fork that helps you monitor and track your eating habits. It also alerts you with the help of indicator lights and gentle vibrations when you are eating too fast. Every time you bring food from your plate to your mouth with your fork. The HAPIfork also measures:

* How long it took to eat your meal
* The amount of “fork servings” taken per minute
* Intervals between “fork servings”

hapifork_NRF15

Pavlok 

The company was inspired by the work of Ivan Pavlov, is known for his work in classical conditioning. Its makers describe it as a “personal coach on your wrist”, and it can dole out electric shocks if its users are doing something that they shouldn’t. Pavlok uses mild electric shock to help you break any habit. It can also shut down access to your phone and make users pay a fine.

pavlok_NRF15

Cicret 

“The Cicret Bracelet: Like a tablet but on your skin.” The bracelet is still in prototype and is not yet available. But a quick video was shown that showcasing some impressive technology that eliminates a number of inconveniences experienced by owning a smartphone. Check out the video here, we think it was the most interesting concept of the show:

NRF15_merchandising_RBMtechnologies

Get Ready: NRF’s annual ‘Big Show’ starts next week

The Merchandising Matters team is traveling again to the 104th annual National Retail Federation’s Big Show in New York City. We are more than excited to see what key trends, buzzwords and strategies will be shaping the industry for the next year. With over 200,000 sq. ft of expo space, 575 solution providers, 60 exhibitors, 14 expo stage sessions and 11 Keynote sessions there is a LOT to see. That’s why we’ve given our recommendations on some of the sessions you shouldn’t miss out on:

Brick is the New Black: Reinventing the Brick-and-Mortar Experience

When: Sunday, 3:15 – 4:15 pm

Where:  North Hall

This Keynote will explore how this shift in buyer behavior represents a unique opportunity for retail leaders to reposition brick-and-mortar stores at the center of the new customer experience. It will feature presentations by two retail executives who will offer their experiences and insights on transforming their current processes to deliver new and advanced capabilities that provide increased sales, faster inventory turns, higher margins and an optimized customer experience.

NRF President and CEO’s Welcome and Opening Remarks

When: Monday, 8:30 – 9:00 am

Where:  North Hall

 Global Economic Challenges and Opportunities for Success: A Conversation with Dr. Ben S. Bernanke

When: Monday, 9:00 – 10:00 am

Where:  North Hall

The leader of the US Federal Reserve during a momentous time of economic and financial crisis, Dr. Ben S. Bernanke offers keen insights and analysis of the current global economic landscape and challenges facing the world today. Hear Dr. Bernanke discuss macro-economic trends for US, global and emerging economies as well as retail’s impact on the US GDP. He’ll provide his valuable perspective and insights on how economies rise and fall in a moderated Q&A dialog led by Stephen I. Sadove, Chairman and CEO (Retired), Saks Inc. and NRF Chairman of the Board. Join one of the world’s leading economic minds, and gain a big-picture understanding of retail’s future.

NRF_javitz_merchandising_RBMTechnologies

This Year’s New Innovative Products – As Seen in the NRF iLab

When: Monday, 11:15 – 12:00 pm

Where:  Level 1 EXPO Hall, EXPO Stage

Exhibitor BIG !deas – Omni-channel Challenge: How to Bring the e-Tail Experience to the Store Floor

When: Monday, 12:45 – 1:30 pm

Where:  Level 1 EXPO Hall, Room 2

Take a quick look at some of the most interesting and innovative products finding their way into the marketplace, (and some that are still on the drawing board) from health, food and beauty, to lighting, home decor, wearables – and more. You’ll hear about the trends that are creating the surge in product advancements and how they’ve translated into various product areas. Experts will share the trends, show you the products and how they work, and you’ll have an opportunity to touch and see them up close in the NRF iLab located just outside the stage.

The “omni-channel challenge” is real for today’s major retailers. Winning the fulfillment wars and rededicating in-store associates to sales conversion activities are key strategic imperatives. Nick D’Alessio and Ed Tonkon of Zebra Technologies will discuss how retailers can effectively employ technology solutions to support the required transformation and to remain competitive.

When: Monday, 1:30 – 2:30 pm

Where: Hall A, 1A 21-22

Every retailer always wants to know what the “next big thing” will be in materials. Materials are now becoming components that meet specific needs and requirements with regard to sustainability, functionality, strength, durability and aesthetics. Three-dimensional printing is a prime example of where the future of materials is headed. It has emerged as a creative outlet for fabricators, designers and artisans alike and provides a way to bring unique ideas to life through rapid speed prototyping. But can it be applied in the retail industry? This session will explore the possibilities and opportunities for 3-D printing in the retail industry.

Exhibitor BIG !deas – Retail’s Future: Where Customer Experience and Employee Engagement Collide

When: Tuesday, 10:15 – 10:45 am

Where:  Level 1 EXPO Hall, Room 2

The evolution of customer and employee expectations is impacting business results for all retailers. In this session we will reveal new research on how employee engagement influences the customer experience and how that experience drives business results.

Global Gathering: Key Perspectives on International Merchandising

When: Tuesday, 10:30 – 11:30 am

Where: Hall E, 1E 12-16

If you’re a fashion brand planning to go global, or expanding into new markets, key strategic changes must be made to ensure this growth is successful. In this session, fashion retailers with international expansion expertise will evaluate how those embarking on the journey should adjust their design, development, product lifecycle process and supporting technology to facilitate and support global growth – and explain why it’s crucial to develop clear channels of communication and a change management roadmap throughout the process.

Retail Design Review: Designing the Customer Experience

When: Tuesday, 1:15 – 2:00 pm

Where: Level 1 EXPO Hall

While online commerce continues to grow by double digits, 90 percent of purchases still happen inside the bricks-and-mortar retail environment. With all of the outside factors of e-commerce and m-commerce coming into play, how are retailers enhancing their physical store spaces, and ultimately, their customer experience? Join Alison Embrey Medina, executive editor of design:retail magazine, as she explores some of the consumer trends and in-store applications that are redefining the retail marketplace as we know it.

Also some of the companies you should not miss checking out at the EXPO floor are RBM Technologies, SAP Retail, Reflexis Systems, Cisco and IBM. 
Disney Store, JC Penney, Retail Localization

5 Secrets For Effective Visual Merchandising

The visual presentation in the store has always been the major customer motivation accounting for the a majority of retail purchase.

Your window display has the potential to attract the customer, reel them in and ultimately lead to purchase. However, there are a few key points every merchandizer should keep in mind.

1. Show less, Focus more
The human mind has a limited attention and focus span and therefore it is advisable to keep the display simple and uncluttered. Leave a lot of space around. The most common mistake is trying to show too much at the same time. Props should be simple in shape, preferably something that provides a large mass of color or texture, such as blocks, covered boxes or risers.

2. Love odd numbers
Always place an odd number of elements in a group. Since it’s easier for the brain to zone in on the middle and the arrangement is slightly off balance, the eyes moves around to look at each frame or object. A perfectly balanced arrangement ie even no is dull to the eye.

retail-inventory-technology

3. Repeat, repeat and repeat
Use variations of identical elements as that creates a very powerful display mechanism. It’s a simple idea but can have a lot of impact on the mind of the consumer and it’s hard to miss such a display.

4. Contrast is key
Make sure the items or frames you want to focus clearly contrast with the background. This includes color contrast as well as material texture contrast. For example, don’t put a metal frame on top of a glossy background. Try making the background dull and repeated so that the frame that displays important information stands out.

5. Attract first, provide choice later: Pyramid method
Place one element at the top of the display which is clear and focussed. Below that, in the form of a pyramid, place other elements which provide choice. It’s hard to go wrong with a pyramid display.

6. BONUS: Always embrace a software solution to execute your campaigns. An idea is only as good as it’s execution. So while your presentation might look fabulous in your laptop, the real thing in the store must be as efficiently done.

“Good visual merchandising is a mix of art, inspiration and science. While great visual can sell lousy product, poor visuals can do nothing for great merchandise.”
Paco Underhill, Why We Buy

Get comfortable with having some empty space in your high fashion displays. Crowding is a symbol of low value. So anything that is high value deserves a lot of space around it. If you keep an expensive item in a crowd the human brain perceives it to be of lower value.

Above all, use the K.I.S.S. theory of display: Keep It Simple, Sweetheart!

Author: Maniraj Singh Juneja, is a director at Amitoje India: One of India’s best store branding and execution firms based in New Delhi. Check www.amitoje.com for more details. You may write to him at [email protected]

retail-store-execution-rbm-technologies-nrf-2014

RBM Technologies Exhibits Visual Merchandising Management Mobile at NRF 2014

RBM Technologies, provider of the only retail communications platform that supports fixture-based planograms, localized campaigns and execution compliance, today announced that it will be exhibiting at the National Retail Federation’s (NRF) 103rd Annual Convention & EXPO in the Motorola Solutions Booth (#1501). RBM Technologies will demonstrate its Visual Merchandising Manager (VMM) Mobile solution on Motorola Solutions’ ET1 enterprise tablet, MC40 enterprise mobile computer and TC55 touch computer, showing how retailers can bring in-store execution and compliance reporting out from the back office and onto the sales floor. NRF 2014 is being held January 12-15, 2014 at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York.

retail-store-execution-rbm-technologies-nrf-2014

Key Facts:

  • The planogram management and in-store campaign execution solution gives retailers the ability to provide individual store teams with real-time, interactive planograms, as well as the ability to react instantly and accurately to corporate merchandise directives.
  • The cameras on the ET1 and MC40 enable store associates to capture photos and confirm visual compliance. And, using the bar code scanning capabilities on the MC40 and TC55, retailers can further augment compliance reporting as each fixture is executed.

“NRF is the ideal venue to showcase VMM Mobile, and our relationship with Motorola Solutions gives us the perfect platform to do so. By linking store managers with corporate headquarters, VMM Mobile reduces the time required to execute campaigns at the individual store level, driving increased sales and ensuring the coordination of campaigns. It enables retailers to tear down the boundaries between data silos and leverage existing information to increase efficiencies at every step of the campaign process,” said Dan Wittner, executive vice president and chief operating officer, RBM Technologies.

VMM Mobile will be on display and available for demonstration in the Motorola Solutions Booth (#1501) throughout the duration of NRF. For more information on the NRF Annual 2014 Convention & Expo, please visit: http://events.nrf.com/annual2014/Public/Content.aspx?ID=21708

metropcs-rbm-technologies

RBM Supports MetroPCS Execution of Localized Campaigns Across Network of Stores

CAMBRIDGE, Mass.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–RBM Technologies, provider of the only retail communications platform that supports fixture-based planograms, localized campaigns and execution compliance, today announced that MetroPCS has implemented RBM’s Visual Merchandising Manager (VMM) solution across its network of stores nationwide. The VMM platform supports MetroPCS with localized campaign planning and execution.

metropcs-rbm-technologies

VMM consolidates dispersed campaign data into a single database to more effectively drive in-store execution of localized assortments. It utilizes unique store attribute data and fixture configurations to deliver an accurate localized product mix to each retail location. RBM’s solution also enables store managers to report merchandising issues and re-order campaign materials from corporate headquarters in real time.

Merchandising, planning, supply chain and store execution all benefit from the implementation of VMM, providing local teams with real-time, interactive planograms to react instantly and accurately to corporate merchandising directives — right down to the individual fixture level.

“Wireless carriers are constantly offering customers new plans, promotions and devices in their stores,” said Dan Wittner, EVP and chief operating officer at RBM Technologies. “By implementing VMM, MetroPCS now has access to an enhanced centralized communications solution that enables them to deploy campaign directives at the store and fixture level while ensuring compliance across their entire network of stores.”

visual-merchandising-management-logicsource-rbm-technologies

LogicSource Partners With RBM Technologies To Revolutionize Visual Merchandising Management For Retailers

Combined cloud-based technology offering will empower retailers to deliver a compelling customer-centric experience in each individual retail environment

LogicSource, a leading global sourcing solutions firm, today announced a new partnership with RBM Technologies, a premier provider of cloud-based visual merchandising solutions, that will provide retailers the definitive end-to-end solution for managing their omnichannel environments.

visual-merchandising-management-logicsource-rbm-technologies

In recent years, customer centricity has truly become a focal point of retail. Consumers exhibit a strong, positive response to retailers who make an effort to understand them and tailor their merchandising, marketing and promotions accordingly. The combined LogicSource and RBM offering puts retailers in complete control by creating a seamless end-to-end interdepartmental workflow that delivers the most relevant marketing solution for each individual retail location.

Leveraging LogicSource’s OneMarket® industry leading Concept-to-Customer technology platform and RBM’s best-in-class visual merchandising management technologies, the partnership integrates the leading-edge assets necessary to realize more impactful retail campaigns and increase marketing ROI.

These components include OneMarket’s digital asset management, creative approval and Procure-to-Pay applications, and RBM’s store attribute management, visual merchandising planograms and automated production quantity point-of-purchase calculations. By adding Dynamic Rendering to the Concept-to-Customer solution, retail customers have a visualization tool that anticipates the individual idiosyncrasies of each retail environment, enabling them to source, design and deliver accordingly.

“Retailers waste time and money routinely shipping large volumes of campaign support materials — POP displays, signage, fixtures and specialized props — to stores that have different physical layouts,” said Sam Vail, managing partner for LogicSource’s OneMarket business unit. “The combination of OneMarket and RBM will empower retailers by automating the ability to accurately visualize, plan, order and ship the right elements to the right layout — creating significant cost savings.”

“We are pleased to be working with LogicSource and its OneMarket Technology to help eliminate the inefficiencies inherent in store-by-store marketing solutions,” said Jeff Smith, vice president, business development and alliances at RBM Technologies. “Together, our goal is to enable retailers to deliver the right product and messaging, at the right place and time, ensuring customers experience the brand as they envisioned.”

Source: Business Wire

RIS News, RBM Technologies, Known Problem Management

What is Known Problem Management?

RIS News recently issued a custom research report (available here) exploring the pain points associated with in-store merchandising. The research uncovers compelling evidence that now is time for retailers to tackle the problem. Over the course of our recent blog series, we examined a number of issues currently preventing retailers from becoming more compliant, and the situational factors bringing about changes for the better.

In this post, we look at the macro-level trend of Known Problem Management being adopted by retailers nationwide, a trend that seeks to address and alleviate many issues facing retailers today.

RIS News, RBM Technologies, Known Problem Management

In retailing, KPM is a new acronym (as if we needed another!). KPM, which was coined by the author of this report stands for Known Problem Management. While you may have never heard the term before, if you work in retail IT, you certainly know what your KPMs are. For some, it’s cumbersome legacy systems that prevent your organization from applying the latest technologies and techniques. If you’re reading this blog, your KPMs likely include ineffective merchandising strategies.

For complicated reasons that go far beyond the scope of the IT department, KPM issues are rarely fast-tracked for resolution. Things like shrink, heterogeneous databases and legacy systems in the tech stack linger year after year with no end in sight.

Adding to the KPM list is inaccurate planogram knowledge. Without precise planogram accuracy down to the fixture level, in-store merchandise planning and execution is a crapshoot that produces high levels of waste and lost revenue at the very least, and disappointed shoppers at the very worst.

The RIS News custom research report explores the KPM of in-store merchandising and uncovers compelling evidence that it is time for retailers to address the problem head on. With the right visual merchandising solutions, campaign planning, execution and compliance becomes easier; communication with corporate headquarters is clear and precise; and most importantly, retailers save valuable time and money.

When the right product and messaging is delivered to the right store, at the right time, and placed on the right fixture, retailers can drive the customer experienced envisioned – addressing a key known issue in the process.

What are some of the KPMs within your organization? And, what are you doing to address these issues? We would love to hear from you in the comments section below. Please feel free to also reach out to us on @Merch_Matters.

A free copy of the full RIS News research report is available here.

RBM Technologies, RIS News, Mannequins

Optimizing In-Store Merchandising – Part 3: Measuring the Costs and Making the Change

RIS News recently issued a custom research report (available here) tackling the issues surrounding in-store merchandising. The research uncovered compelling evidence that suggests now is time for retailers to tackle the problem. Over the course of this series, we will examine a number of issues currently preventing retailers from becoming more compliant, and the situational factors bringing about changes for the better.

In this post, we look at the costs associated with improving in-store merchandising and solutions to making that change.

To get at the heart of what is clearly a challenging problem for retailers, RIS News asked senior-level retail merchandisers to estimate the percentage of lost annual sales they attribute to non-compliance of in-store merchandising.

RBM Technologies, RIS News, Mannequins

Thirty-seven percent said that up to three percent of annual sales are lost due to non-compliance. That means, for a company with a billion dollars in annual sales, up to $30 million is lost as a result of holes in in-store merchandising practices, and a key factor in justifying a corrective investment. The scariest part is that for nearly 15 percent of respondents, the percentage lost was upwards of 14 percent.

In addition to lost sales, waste is another problem that arises from inaccurate in-store merchandising practices. For the purposes of the research report, waste was defined as over shipping of product, over printing of materials, and cost of shipping materials that can’t be used in some stores. Nearly half of all respondents estimated their waste to be between six – 16 percent annually.

When you add the amount of loss incurred from waste to the dollar figure associated with lost sales caused by non-compliance, it is apparent that a great deal of corporate revenue is within grasp for those retailers willing to reach for the low-hanging fruit.

In the five-year period from January 2008 to January 2013, retail store sales have grown 8.5 percent while online sales have grown 72 percent. Yet brick-and-mortar stores continue to be the centerpiece of the retail industry and source of the lion’s share of revenue.

As a result, many retailers are focusing on customer-centric strategies that put digital capabilities inside stores, converting them into omnichannel hubs that expand and improve the shopping experience to attract and keep customers.

However, this strategy is only half of the solution. The other half is to solve known problems in the store that produce a measurably negative impact on sales. Chief among these is the low-hanging fruit of inaccurate in-store merchandising campaigns.

Today, the bulk of the retailing industry is operating with known data gaps, inaccuracies at the store level and workaround tools that are sorely in need of upgrading. Merchandising plans and forecasts are based on historical or aggregated averages that are essentially guesswork instead of hard science.

The ultimate solution is to tie customer-centric improvements in the store with in-store merchandising improvements that increase sales, conversions and customer satisfaction while enabling efforts to reduce waste and lost opportunities.

Does your company currently implement visual merchandising solutions to ensure campaign compliance at the fixture level? We would love to hear from you in the comments section below. Please feel free to also reach out to us on @Merch_Matters.

A free copy of the full RIS News research report is available here.