An international direct-to-consumer specialty craft retailer is improving warehouse management with cloud-based technology.
Crafter’s Companion, which is headquartered in California and the U.K. and sells its arts and crafts products via multiple channels in more than 40 countries across Europe, Asia, Australia and North and South America, is deploying the cloud-based e-commerce warehouse management solution (WMS) from Descartes Systems Group.
The retailer intends to obtain higher customer satisfaction as a result of faster order processing, and says it has significantly reduced its fulfillment error rate by increasing the accuracy of its existing pick and pack process using barcode-based scanning processes.
Specifically, Crafter’s Companion says it has achieved a 25% increase in fulfilment efficiency with an error rate of less than 1%. Order information is automatically available to be executed via mobile-driven multi-order pick-and-pack strategies, and then fed into Descartes and third-party parcel shipment systems.
“We’re thrilled to be working with Descartes and implementing its e-commerce WMS in our global, 54,000-sq.-ft. distribution center is an important milestone for the business,” said Sara Davies, founder and creative director of Crafter’s Companion. “The software is helping us operate to our full potential, as we continue to service our amazing worldwide community of customers.”
“We’re proud to enable Crafter’s Companion to pursue its global growth strategy with scalable processes and highly accurate fulfilment operations,” said Dirk Haschke, VP & GM, e-commerce at Descartes. “The company’s focus lies on its customers’ satisfaction and by ensuring efficient intralogistics processes, Descartes’ ecommerce WMS helps to fulfill the promises made.”
Founded in 2005 by Sara Davies, Crafter's Companion supplies its products directly to consumers online and through its retail stores, as well as via its trade, wholesale and TV shopping partners.
Dollar General names global supply chain head
Dollar General has promoted an 18-year company veteran.
Dollar General said it has promoted Rod West to executive VP of global supply chain effective September 1, 2023. He will lead the company’s distribution center operations, transportation, supply chain modernization and its private fleet.
Dollar General’s distribution network consists of 31 distribution centers, which employ more than 15,000 individuals. In August, the company opened its first-ever dual distribution center, which is designed to combine the efficiencies of traditional and DG Fresh supply chain functionalities.
West, who most recently served as DG’s senior VP of distribution, joined Dollar General in 2005 as VP of process improvement and led supply chain, finance, merchandising, marketing and store operations initiatives. He served as the VP of perishables growth and development from 2019 to 2021 where he strategically led the DG Fresh initiative from ideation to full implementation.
“Rod is an outstanding leader who will continue driving Dollar General forward through his considerable internal knowledge and experience on our supply chain team,” said Jeff Owen, CEO, Dollar General. “I am confident his leadership and expertise will further benefit Dollar General’s business, customers and communities.”
Prior to joining Dollar General, West held roles of increasing responsibility within the retail and consumer products consulting practice at Kurt Salmon Associates.
As of August 4, 2023, the company’s 19,488 Dollar General, DG Market, DGX and PopShelf stores across the U.S. and Mi Súper Dollar General stores in Mexico.
Regional grocer Festival Foods optimizes price with AI
Wisconsin-based Festival Foods is expanding its omnichannel competitive intelligence program.
Festival Foods is adding the Price Image Management suite from Engage3 Powered By Dexi to its existing Engage3 competitive intelligence platform. Leveraging its new solution, the retailer will utilize data science and proprietary machine learning (ML) to identify and optimize the items with the greatest influence on customers' price perception.
As a result, Festival Foods hopes to generate price recommendations that drive revenue and margin growth while growing customer loyalty. Festival Foods relies on Engage3 for omnichannel data visibility via in-store audits and online web scraping, as well as the Engage3 Lighthouse AI-based product linking module.
"The customer is at the heart of everything we do at Festival Foods," said Benjamin Plaza, Festival Foods manager of business analytics. "Engage3's Price Image solution gives us unprecedented insights into customer psychology that help us deliver exceptional customer experiences while growing revenue and trips."
"We're happy to build on our previous success with Festival Foods and provide new tools to help them build trust and loyalty with their customers," said Engage3 CEO, Edris Bemanian. "The addition of Price Image Optimization gives Festival Foods a completely new way to balance customer engagement with bottom-line growth.”
Founded in 1946 as Skogen's IGA, Festival Foods is a Wisconsin family- and employee-owned grocer that began operating as Festival Foods in 1990 and today operates 32 full-service supermarkets across the state of Wisconsin.
A strong performance outside of the U.S. gave a boost to Costco Wholesale Corp.’s same-store sales in August.
The company reported that its net sales rose 5% to $18.42 billion for the four weeks ended Aug. 27, up from $17.55 billion in August 2022.
Total company comparable sales rose 3.4%, but e-commerce sales fell 2.5%.
Comp sales rose 2.8% in the U.S. and 3% in Canada. International comps rose 7.3%.
Total comparable sales excluding the impacts from changes in gasoline prices and foreign exchange rose 4.1%. Comp sales rose 3.2% in the U.S. and 7.5% in Canada. International comps rose 5.4%.
Costco currently operates 861 warehouses, including 591 in the United States and Puerto Rico, 107 in Canada, 40 in Mexico, 33 in Japan, 29 in the United Kingdom, 18 in Korea, 15 in Australia, 14 in Taiwan, five in China, four in Spain, two in France, and one each in Iceland, New Zealand and Sweden. Costco also operates e-commerce sites in the U.S., Canada, the U.K., Mexico, Korea, Taiwan, Japan and Australia.
Homesense opens four new stores — here are the locations
TJX Cos. continues to expand its Canadian home furnishings banner southward in the United States.
The brand, which has 154 stores in Canada and 79 in Europe, recently opened four new stores, including two locations in Florida (Sawgrass Mills Mall, Sunrise; and The Shoppes at New Tampa, Tampa) and two in North Carolina (Afton Ridge, Concord; and The Shops at the Fresh Market, Cornelius). Homesense has 51 U.S. locations.
Homesense stores features a wide array of furniture, a rug emporium, a wall art and mirror gallery, an extensive lighting department that includes chandeliers, and a general store section with project supplies.
Customers can also shop for seasonal items, including décor and entertaining essentials.
As of July 29, 2023, TJX operated a total of 4,884 stores in nine countries, the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Germany, Poland, Austria, the Netherlands, and Australia, and seven e-commerce sites. These include 1,305 T.J. Maxx, 1,190 Marshalls, 907 HomeGoods, 83 Sierra, and 49 Homesense stores in the United States; 299 Winners, 154 HomeSense, and 106 Marshalls stores in Canada; 636 T.K. Maxx and 79 Homesense stores in Europe; and 76 T.K. Maxx stores in Australia.