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March 8, 2013

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News Brief
Sponsored by WG Security Products, Inc.
Dr. Larry Barton to discuss threat assessment and violence prevention at NRF LP Conference in Keynote address Dr. Larry Barton is one of the world's leading experts in threat assessment and workplace violence. His client list includes Walmart, Nike, ESPN, General Mills, MillerCoors, QVC, Fidelity Investments and many others. Using real cases, Dr. Barton will illustrate how to best process and manage threats in today's workplace environment. (Source

The Loss Prevention Research Council continues to grow with new members and 15 new research projects  Excited LPRC keeps growing with new members like Nike, BJ's Wholesale, Tractor Supply Co., Neiman Marcus, Diageo, Mead Johnson as we move forward with over 15 new research projects.

Near Field Communications, universal acceptance of mobile payments and location-based POS is the secret sauce of retailing today  More than half (53%) of industry leaders believe that improving customers’ retail experience is essential to creating a successful mobile payments scheme, according to a recent survey by SAP. The study, SAP’s third consecutive GSMA Mobile World Congress survey, found that the “secret sauce” for creating a better retail experience includes POS services such as near-field communication (28%), facilitating universal acceptance of mobile payments (25%) and location-based point-of-sale offerings (24%). (Source

Store Closure Strategies Still Overshadowing Expansion Campaigns 
Announcements of store closures continue to outnumber planned store openings, according to the latest year-end results being reported by the nation’s largest publicly held retailers. Major retailers such as Barnes & Noble, Best Buy and Sears, all announced store closures as part of plans to "rationalize" or "right-size" the number of stores. (Source

J.C. Penney eliminates 1,500 store-level department managers and merchandising positions across its chain  The layoffs this week are the latest carnage at Penney, which last month eliminated 300 positions at its headquarters in Plano, Texas, according to sources. Last April, in the first of two major rounds of layoffs, Johnson canned 8,000 store-level positions, including managers and assistant managers, sources said. In January, the 1,100-store chain laid off 1,000 receptionists at its salons. (Source

Macy's, Penney's goes into mediation 
A New York State Supreme Court Judge has ordered Macy's, J.C. Penney and Martha Stewart Living into mediation in a bid to resolve a dispute over a partnership with the Martha Stewart brand. On Thursday, Martha Stewart and Terry Lundgren, CEO of Macy's, had "a productive conversation regarding the ongoing contract dispute," Martha Stewart Living said in statement prior to the judge's order that the parties enter into mediation. This was the first conversation they had since Stewart told Lundgren about the Penney's deal on Dec. 6, 2011 when Lundgren was so upset he hung the phone up on her. Johnson knew Stewart needed the money for her businesses and obtained a copy of the Macy's contract which allowed Stewart to open her own stores which Penney's used as their wedge. This is a retail battle worth watching because it is all about the money on a grand scale. That can impact thousands of employees and quite a few LP jobs as well. (Source

Waterstones bookstores to close 6 campus stores and HMV is teetering in the UK
The same scene in the UK as it is in North America. The book stores and music stores are just shrinking quickly. Elton John actually tried helping HMV recently by performing in one of their stores just to help out as it was his childhood favorite store. But the exact same thing is happening in the UK as it is here with these stores just getting replaced by online retailers. (Source

Demand for IT cybersecurity executives over last 5 years grew 12 times faster than all other jobs, includes retail security analysts  In 2012, there were more than 67,400 separate postings for cybersecurity-related jobs in a range of industries, including defense, financial services, retail, healthcare and professional services. The 2012 total is 73% higher than the number of security jobs posted in 2007. Posting for all jobs grew by only 6% during the period. The two most sought-after jobs by employers were information security engineers and security analysts, which includes retail security analysts. (Source

European Cybercrime Center (EC3) helps bust Asian criminal network, 15,000 compromised credit card numbers from around the world  Finnish law enforcement authorities, working closely with the European Cybercrime Centre (EC3) at Europol, have dismantled an Asian criminal network responsible for illegal internet transactions and purchasing of airline tickets. The criminal network had been misusing credit card details stolen from cardholders worldwide. In Europe alone, over 70,000 euros in losses were sustained by cardholders and banks. In addition, there is evidence of further criminal activities in large-scale international payment fraud and illegal immigration. (Source

Walmart Plans Midwest Distribution Center in Mankato, Minnesota.  Walmart plans to open a 420,000 square foot distribution center in Mankato, Minnesota to serve its growing customer base in the Upper Midwest. City officials said the facility will employ approximately 300 associates and will help stimulate additional local business growth. The facility will be used primarily for the distribution of perishable products throughout the Upper Midwest. The facility is expected to open in late 2015. (Source

Rochester, N.H., police build website to fight shoplifting  Police said shoplifting is on the rise in the city, and they hope the new website will help business owners connect and share information that could stop would-be thieves in their tracks. The website hasn't launched. Rochester police said they are trying to recruit as many businesses around the city as they can. (Source

Pasco County, Florida hit with 13 smash and grab burglaries since Jan. 
For two months, there's a been a bit of a crime spree in Pasco County. Sheriff's office investigators say a man seen on surveillance video attempting to break into Kamala Food Mart in Hudson is behind 13 smash and grab burglaries since January. They've hit stores in Port Richey and New Port Richey but most of their work takes place in Hudson -- nine locations in total. (Source

Brisbane, Australia’s Queen Street Mall locked down; one armed gunman threatening customers and employees shot by police with rubber bullets sustained non life threatening injuries.  Dozens of heavily-armed police had converged on the mall, after a confrontation between the gunman and plain clothes officers. News footage shows the man sitting on a chair, under an awning at the casino end of the mall. Thousands of workers and shoppers had been evacuated, with police telling them to run and take shelter in nearby shops. One witness told AAP she was having lunch in the mall when three men confronted another man nearby. "The guy ripped off his shirt and pulled out a gun and pointed it at them." "The other three men, who looked like plain clothes police, pulled out their guns and screamed at the man to get down on the ground. Police declared an emergency situation, and dispatched negotiators to the scene. (Source

Deadly force not justified, family sues Walmart, Deputy and Security Company in Houston.  Back in December a sheriff's deputy working for an outside security contactor was working at Walmart. By the time the deputy reached the suspects believed to have shoplifted they were already in their car. The deputy opened the car’s passenger door, reaching in as the other female driver put the car in reverse. The officer said he feared for his safety and shot the suspect, killing her. The family of Shelly Marie Frey is now seeking damages for wrongful death. (Source

Neiman Marcus store in Woodland Hills burglarized; high-end handbags stolen.  Police with the K-9 unit searched the Neiman Marcus store in Woodland Hills yesterday at 4:50am for a possible burglars still inside. Upon completion of a search of the store police did not find the assailant. Police were concerned the suspect may have gotten into the mall but the mall entrance was still sealed. Surveillance video captured three hooded suspects grabbing several high-end handbags and fleeing the store. (Source

California man gets 8 years in prison for selling fake Disney pins from China. Larry James Allred, 58, pleaded guilty to a court offer to one felony count of trademark infringement with sentencing enhancements for property loss over $200,000 and admitted a 1975 prior strike conviction for rape and a 1978 prior strike conviction for kidnapping and rape. He is expected to be sentenced to eight years in state prison and ordered to pay $201,000. (Source

New London Woman Arrested For Allegedly Stealing $125,000 of Pandora Charms From Jared's Jewelers.  The Waterford Police Department charged a 21-year-old woman with first-degree larceny after she allegedly stole 1600 Pandora charms from Jared Jewelers, where she worked. Chassa Ladson, 21 had worked at the Jared Jewelers store for 10-months, at the Waterford location. Ladson told police she would give the charms to a man named Juan Rodriquez, who sold them on eBay and at a club, and would give her 10 percent of the profit. Ladson refused to give more information about Rodriquez, and instead said she would “take the fall” for the larceny. The Class B Felony is punishable with between one and 20 years in prison. (Source

Dallas thief hits the same Boost Mobile store 5 times, cutting through the wall.  The manager believes the same suspect has hit the Boost Mobile store five different times, stealing over $20,000 of merchandise. The owner hoped that upgrading the surveillance cameras would help indentify the suspect; police still have little to go on. The suspect entered through the adjoining wall of a Dry Cleaner and was in and out of store in less than two minutes. (Source

Jewelry store employees duck taped as 2 posing as soldiers rob the store in Washington.  The jewelry store is just a few blocks from the entrance of McChord Air Force Base, so seeing two men dressed as soldiers will get you buzzed into the store. The two suspects pointed a handgun at the associates and demanded jewelry as store security cameras caught the incident on tape. The suspects took seven minutes to grab everything they wanted, then duct taped the two associates in the restroom of the store. (Source

February Same Store Sales Results

Stein Mart up 0.6%
Alco flat
Fred's down 1.5%
Cato down 3%

Quarterly Same Store Sales Results

Foot Locker 4Q up 7.9% with revenue up 14%
Ann Inc. 4Q down 0.7% (up 1.4% at Ann Taylor & down 6.8% at Loft) with revenue up 6%
Genesco 4Q down 2% with net sales up 10%

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Press Release

David Williams joins Vector Security as Sales Director

National Accounts leader will focus on growth in the Eastern United States and Canada

PITTSBURGH, PA, March 5, 2013 – Vector Security, one of North America’s top electronic security companies, announces the addition of David Williams as Director of North American Sales, reporting to Michael Grady, Executive Vice President of Vector Security. David, most recently with Protection 1, will be responsible for managing the National Accounts Division sales and marketing plan while concentrating on developing business in the Eastern United States and Canada. David will work from the Atlanta Georgia area. Gary Fraser, Director of North American Sales for Vector Security will concentrate his sales efforts on the Western United States and Canada.

“David is a proven leader and is well respected in the National Accounts/Loss Prevention market,” said Michael Grady, Executive Vice President of Vector Security. “We welcome David to the team and look forward to his continued success in delivering tailored security solutions for retail and national account customers. David, along with Gary, will provide the coverage and focus we need to continue our growth strategy across the United States and Canada.”

Art Miller
Vice President, Marketing


Canadian Push
Target Canadian launch expected to spark price wars  The arrival of U.S. discount giant Target in Canadian markets will introduce some much-needed retail competition, providing shoppers with more opportunities to benefit from price wars, experts say. "In certain cases, the prices will actually be completely on par with U.S. prices and in some cases there might be some differences,” Target Canada spokesperson Lisa Gibson told The Canadian Press. “Our overall goal is to make sure we're competitive with the marketplace." But with higher minimum wages and more paid holidays all paid out of the stores there is a difference in labor costs. Target plans to open another 21 stores throughout Ontario this month, although the dates haven't been announced. (Source

Union claims Target Canada engaged in unfair hiring practices  The Canadian arm of the United Food and Commercial Workers union has taken aim at Target for its alleged unfair treatment of former Zellers workers. The union claims that Target, which is converting 189 Zellers stores, is not giving former employees a fair shake in the hiring process and that many have been turned down for employment without reason. They fought Wal-Mart as well in Canada and won't give up easily. (Source

U.S. womenswear retailer Chico’s to expand into Canada beginning late 2013
Kicking off its international efforts in Canada with plans to open three of its White House|Black Market stores later this year and will then open Canadian Chico’s stores in 2014. Founded in 1983 as a boutique selling Mexican folk art and sweaters, Chico’s has since expanded to nearly 700 locations across the U.S., D.C. and Puerto Rico. (Source

The Bay department store rebranded as Hudson's Bay - good timing all things considered  The Bay is going back to its roots under a plan to rebrand its operations with a different name and new logo. With the increased competition it's a great time to re-launch your brand and stage grand openings and special events. It'll increase foot traffic and get the consumers talking right at the time Target is getting all the press. (Source

One merely needs to look at Yorkdale Mall in Toronto to see the Canadian Push with 12 new retailers opening from the U.S. & UK  All Saints, a U.K.-based clothing store, American womenswear retailer White House|Black Market, menswear retailer John Varvatos, New York-based designer jewelry company David Yurman, English company Mulberry, known for its handbags, and home decor outfit Zara Home will open their first stores in Canada. Holt Renfrew will double its present size in August, while Harry Rosen and The Bay will open redesigned locations in the fall. Last November, the shopping centre unveiled the results of a $220 million-expansion that brought Ted Baker London, Kate Spade, Ann Taylor Loft, Microsoft and Tesla Motors to Canada. Yorkdale added 145,000 square feet to bring its total to 1.6 million square feet of retail space. (Source

Thieves armed with bear spray rob Vancouver Apple Store  Bear spray wielding thieves stormed into a Vancouver Apple Store just before closing on Monday, and hit approximately 40 people with the caustic spray before making off with an unknown quantity of iPods, iPads and laptops. The attack occurred just before 7 p.m., as approximately 40 customers were in the store, according to a statement from Vancouver Police. Five would need to be treated by paramedics for exposure to the chemical, whose active ingredient is derived from cayenne peppers. Vancouver Police wrote that the thieves stole only “a small number of electronics.” (Source

Tractor-trailers containing $100,000 worth of frozen chickens stolen in Etobicoke  Two tractor-trailers containing cases of whole frozen chickens valued at nearly $100,000 were stolen early Tuesday in north Etobicoke, according to Toronto police. (Source

Canadians browse and buy more online than any developed nation in 2012
All those views helped drive Canadian e-commerce spending to $22.3 billion in 2012, up 9.9% from $20.3 billion in 2011. Canadians spent an average of 41.3 hours per month during Q4 on the web, second only to U.S. consumers, who spent 43.0 hours. (Source

Vector Security

ORC News
Sponsored by Vector Security
Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi Friday proposed a plan intended to stop organized retail theft  Attorney General Pam Bondi today announced a legislative proposal intended to stop organized retail theft, a type of organized crime that ultimately leaves consumers paying higher prices as a result of businesses’ losses. State Rep. Ross Spano advanced House Bill 1173 and state Sen. Kelli Stargel posed Senate Bill 1404 to enhance the penalties and stiffen sentencing guidelines for an organized retail theft exceeding $50,000. The new organized retail theft charges would equal first-degree grand theft with a baseline sentence of 21 months in prison. In order to crack down on this illegal industry, our laws against such offences need to be strengthened. I am excited to sponsor legislation that enhances the Florida Communications Fraud Act and to work with Attorney General Bondi in addressing this issue on behalf of Florida's businesses and consumers," said Stargel. (Source (Source

Update: 4 Mount Pleasant Men Charged With Shoplifting - ORC  Three men arrested for home invasion last week are now charged with shoplifting from several stores in Isabella County. Now police say all four stole merchandise from Dunham's, Meijer, Dick's Sporting Goods, Wal-Mart, and K-Mart in Mount Pleasant over a six month span. (Source

Three suspects arrested at Target, the focus of investigation for hitting both San Pedro and Hawthorne stores back in January.  The group of four people in the video from January shopped the Target store, selecting things from nearly every department. When they went to the register and the total of the two carts full of merchandise was valued at over $1000. When one of the suspects wrote a check it was refused, and  the three of the suspects had already pushed the carts out the door. The merchandise was loaded into a van, and then they snatched the check writer from the front of the store waiting with Loss Prevention. (Source

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Vendor Spotlight

Axonify Awarded Bersin By Deloitte’s WhatWorks® Delivering Innovation Award

Bite-sized Learning Dropping Jaws Across the Enterprise Learning Space

WATERLOO, ON – March 7, 2013 - Bersin by Deloitte, a leading provider of research- based membership programs in human resources (HR), talent and learning, today announced the next generation eLearning platform Axonify as a recipient of the WhatWorks® Awards. This accomplishment marks the fourth time Axonify has been recognized by the industry for its innovative eLearning platform.

Among the recipients in the Delivering Innovation category, Axonify is being recognized for its approach and use of personalized bite-size, gamified interval reinforcement in the eLearning space. “All of us at Axonify are tremendously proud and honored to be the recipients of this year’s WhatWorks® award,” said Carol Leaman, President & CEO of Axonify. “This industry-wide recognition reaffirms our commitment to making learning fun, personalized and engaging in a effective and bite-sized way.”

Winners were chosen by Bersin & Associates LLC in 2012 from hundreds of applicants and include industry leaders in business processes, consulting, financial services, food products, government, hospitality, information technology, insurance, media and software. Bersin & Associates LLC conducted the awards program in cooperation with Human Resource Executive® magazine.

“Implemented in a climate of ongoing market turbulence, winning programs this year focused heavily on business agility, analytics, continuous development, collaboration and change management,” said David Mallon, vice president of research, Bersin by Deloitte

Winners will be recognized at Bersin by Deloitte research conference, IMPACT 2013: The Business of Talent, April 22-25. In addition, HR, learning and talent practitioners from winning organizations – past and present – will participate in panel discussions and present case studies on a wide range of topics. Organizations to be represented include CACI, Mars, Kaiser Permanente, Merck, New York Life Insurance Company, Ryan, and UnitedHealth Group.

For more information, please contact:

Laura Evenson
Communications, Bersin by Deloitte
+1 415 465-2711

Laura Martin
Vice-President, Marketing, Axonify Inc.
+1 519 585-1200 ext. 203


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Your Career
Hold Your Team Accountable: Here's How What keeps you up at night? If you're like most managers, your answer is accountability: how to get it and increase it. Want to get more passionate high performing teams? Raise the bar on accountability. Here's how. (It's not just for sales)

Managing Creative People and Teams As D. Scott Fitzgerald once said about the very rich, "They are different from you and me." So too with this subset of population, but in this case the difference is they're more creative, which has implications for management. (What not how)

Low-Cost Ways to Show Employees They're Highly Valued This article features 30 low-cost ideas for small businesses that want to show employees they are valued. However, a lot of the featured perks can be used by any size business, especially if that business wants happy employees. (#16 will help your part-timers)

How (and When) to Give Advice Great leaders reserve their advice for the people and situations in which it will do the most good. There is a time to provide advice and offer an opinion, and there is a time not to. Don't be too quick to offer unsolicited advice. (Follow the golden rule)


Tip of the Day
Sponsored by Vector Security

Success can not happen without conflict. Because success always challenges the status quo, regardless, and mandates change. And in order for change to be successful you need commitment - you need everyone to buy in totally. It's not good enough for everyone to merely agree and move forward because they'll be those that merely go thru the motions and don't believe. One can disagree and still commit but for those who don't engage - commitment is a mere phrase not reinforced by actions.

Just a thought,

Gus Downing

Gus Downing

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