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July 24, 2013

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News Brief
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Domino's Pizza re-engineering their Loss Prevention effort  With Van Carney's recent promotion this past May the LP program there is growing and expanding their focus. As their second actual Director of Loss Prevention, Van is elevating their vision to include all the elements of shrink and financial performance much like 7-Eleven is doing now.

Two Dallas retailers eliminate senior LP positions - EZ Corp and TGI Fridays  Last month both retailers regretfully eliminated their senior Loss Prevention positions. And while it's rather unique to see this mid year some retail sectors are not performing well, especially the casual dining sector. There was also a few other mid level Loss Prevention positions eliminated this week actually. We'll see if this continues over the next month. However usually the industry picks up in August in preparation for the upcoming fourth quarter push.

Data Sharing Mitigates Cargo Risk - Anthony Canale, VP at Verisk Crime Analytics, and CargoNet's leader discusses the issues  When LP/security, supply chain, and law enforcement stakeholders collaborate over good data, cargo theft is thwarted. Anthony Canale, VP at Verisk Crime Analytics, and CargoNet's leader talks to the issues in this arena in this article and says Beyond real-time collaborative action, the data collected and analyzed by CargoNet gives retailers and manufacturers tools to benchmark theft trends against the national aggregate at a granular level. For them, it’s about brand protection — not just cutting losses, but avoiding empty shelves and reducing the expense associated with safety stock. A growing number of CEOs concerned about supply chain disruptions are giving this their undivided attention. (Source retailsolutionsonline.com)

Kmart Shop Your Way takes pay-in-store option to next level  While most retailers who allow customers to reserve items online at stores they also require the shopper to wait for the items to be delivered. Kmart is offering their Shop Your Way customers the ability to reserve items for 48 hours and pick them up at the store if it's in stock and pay at the store in any way they wish. "With Pay in Store, we offer our members more choices and provide access to online shopping for a large, underserved portion of the U.S. population that wants the convenience of shopping online but does not have a credit card or is reluctant to submit their card information via the Internet," said Imran Jooma, EVP and president, marketing, online, and financial services, Sears Holdings. (Source retailingtoday.com)

Spartan Grocery Stores has the capital for more acquisitions, even after the Nash Finch purchase - who'll be next?  Given the grocery industry's volatility and massive restructuring there's a number of potential smaller banners that would benefit from consolidating. However the key may be the geographical location and expanding Spartan's footprint in a logical and distribution sensitive manner. With Nash Finch you see a Michigan retailer buying a Minneapolis retailer thereby rapping around the great lakes and virtually connecting the dots. The only question will be long term is how does the LP structure change in any of the banners they buy. (Source supermarketnews.com)

99 Cents Only digitizes audit management
99 Cents Only Stores is digitizing its audit management procedures with the ACL GRC internal audit management system. Leveraging the GRC solution, the retailer will replace spreadsheets and shared drives. Anticipated benefits include increased collaboration and visibility among team members, the ability to more easily perform risk assessments and scoring, and ease of workflow adjustment as new issues and risks are identified. (Source chainstoreage.com)

Apparel stores targeted by theft more than the rest of High Street in UK
  Fashion retailers appear more susceptible to theft - particularly staff dishonesty - than the rest of the High Street according to a new survey from the Retail Loss Prevention Fashion Forum. The Forum took the decision to measure crime in its own sector because their perception of losses seemed to out of sync with the industry norm, as recorded by other retail surveys. The findings reveal that although customer theft was in decline and largely in line with other surveys, internal theft was more than 30% of all fashion theft, whereas it represented single-digit per cent of the rest of the high Street, according to the British Retail Consortium (BRC) crime survey. (Source theretailbulletin.com)

Italy Police Seize 18 Million Counterfeit Goods in Raids
  Italy's financial police Tuesday said four Chinese businessmen were under investigation after officers seized 18 million counterfeit goods, including clothes, toys and kitchenware, in two raids in Padua and Rome. (Source industryweek.com)

Higher tax rate creating a tobacco black market in Washington state with 35% of all cigarettes being smuggled in  The state’s tax on cigarettes is $3.02 a pack, compared to $1.18 in Oregon and 57 cents in Idaho. In the border cities of Washington, the ease of hopping the state line for cheaper smokes is just too tempting for some. Washington’s Department of Revenue estimates the state lost about $376 million in tax revenue in 2012 to cigarette tax evasion and officers of the Washington State Liquor Control Board are busting shops for selling smokes without the state stamp. (Source reason.com)

Half a billion mobile phones can be hacked worldwide
  The United Nations is warning telecommunications regulators and government agencies about significant vulnerabilities in cell phone technology which would allow hackers to attack at least half a billion mobile phones worldwide. Yahoo! reports that the bug will allow hackers to access compromised Subscriber Identity Modules (SIMs) to commit financial crimes and electronic espionage. iPhones, Androids and Blackberrys are vulnerable. (Source homelandsecuritynewswire.com)

New Zealand Retailers Association estimates shoplifting cost retailers $2 Million dollars a day.  The New Zealand Retailers Association estimates that each day in New Zealand, between $1 million and $2 million is lost in sales as a direct result of shoplifting and theft. Shoplifting convictions have dropped over the last 4 years from 5,078 in 2009 to 3,896 in 2012, but the value of merchandise has increased. (Source odt.co.nz)

Quarterly Same Store Sales Results

Domino's Pizza Q2 up 5.8% with revenue up 10%
Canada's Loblaw's Q2 up 1.1% with retail sales up 1.9%

Michael's Q2 down 2.7% with sales down 0.1%

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Retail Crime News
 
Retail sales clerk killed in cellphone store Metro PCS robbery Saturday night in Jacksonville, FL.  Cellphone stores have been a target in Jacksonville for the past couple of years matching the national trend. Police said Tuesday night that an arrest was made in the Metro PCS case. (Source jacksonville.com)

Shot Fired at Macy’s Loss Prevention Agents at Everett Mall, No One Hit.  Police say a suspected shoplifter fired a shot Tuesday evening in the Everett Mall as Macy's loss prevention agents accosted him as he was leaving the store. The agents gained control of the 26-year-old Everett man's handgun and held him for police, who swarmed to the mall after receiving numerous 911 calls about the gunshot. The police spokesman says the arrested man was taken to a hospital for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries suffered during the fight. The loss prevention agents were treated at the scene for minor injuries. Both the gun and the bullet have been recovered. The suspect will be charged with robbery and assault. (Source krem.com)

Flash mob hit D.C. area convenience store: manager struck with a board.  Approximately 20 teens entered the small convenience store at the same time, the event was captured on the store video surveillance. The store manager apparently followed the teens out of the store and was struck with a large board by one of the teens. (Source wusa9.com)

Serial robber gets 23 yr. prison term for five-month robbery binge crime spree  Lorinda Goodin, 43, was involved in at least 31 robberies, burglaries and car thefts. Most of the crimes were committed between August and December 2011. They spanned the width of Oregon into Idaho leaving a string of terrified store clerks and tellers. She is a career criminal with a huge drug problem, and hit numerous retailers in the two states. She also has two male accomplices. (Source registerguard.com)

Polk County, FL., man arrested for multiple smash and grab burglaries hitting retailers  Sheffield broke into the following stores in Polk County during the late evening/early morning hours of July 21-22: Advanced Auto, Sears, AT&T, Radio Shack, Badcock Furniture, and Family Pawn Shop. Sheffield was arrested, and post-Miranda, confessed to the aforementioned burglaries. He told deputies he stole to support his cocaine habit. (Source dailyridge.com)

Shoplifter tries to stab Walmart officers after failed theft in West Ashley, S.C.  After a man was confronted at a West Ashley Walmart by loss prevention officers, police say the man pulled a knife and tried to cut several people. According to a police report, 56-year-old Willie Wright Jr. was trying to walk out the door of the Walmart without paying for a Blu-Ray player tucked under his arm. A loss prevention officer tried to stop him, at which point Wright ran through the store, fell to the floor and started swinging a knife at the loss prevention officers. "Get back. I will cut you," Wright reportedly told the officers. One of the loss prevention officers was cut on the hand, the report states. Wright was charged with property crime enhancement and two counts of second-degree assault and battery. (Source abcnews4.com)

Dollar General employee fights with armed suspect in Tampa.  Suzanne Yancey, a Dollar General employee is very lucky, she managed to fight off a knife welding robber from her store. The suspect set down his knife just long enough to make an attempt to grab the register cash. Yancey grabbed the knife and threw it down an aisle. Yancey then pushed the very large man away from the register. The suspect fled, and no one was injured, Tampa Police say tracking down the suspect is a high priority. (Source wtsp.com)

Woman accused of stealing credit cards from patients during eye exams.  Detectives discovered that Olson worked in at least two eye doctors' offices in the Village of Oak Creek and Sedona and linked her presence at these locations to several victims. Detectives determined Olson would go through women's purses when they left their personal property unattended in the office during eye exams. She would steal credit cards and identification and the victims did not realize the theft until at least a day later. Olson was caught at a Walmart store placing items she had not scanned into a bag at a self-checkout. When clerks checked the credit card Olson was using, they found the card was not in her name and contacted authorities. She was arrested and security video from various stores confirmed Olson was linked to 12 cases under review. (Source kpho.com)

Zales Employee, Accused Of Stealing $80,000 Worth Of Jewelry.  A Zales employee who worked at the Potomac Mills Mall location is accused of stealing jewelry. Police say Persephone Laportia Foushee is accused of embezzling close to $80,000 worth of jewelry from the Zales after a police investigation that started in April. Friday, detectives executed a search warrant at Foushee's home in Woodbridge. Police say they found several pieces of jewelry. Foushee is charged with felony embezzlement and possession of stolen property. She is being held on $10,000 secured bond, say police. (Source nbcwashington.com)

Cuban national will do 8 months in jail for Polo theft.  One of the two suspects has been charged in the theft of $600 worth of merchandise from the Polo Ralph Lauren store in the Tanger Outlet Mall. The suspect was accused of burglary and will spend the next 240 days in jail, his accomplice has yet to be charged. Both men were arrested July 3 when Barstow Police, responding to a reported theft in progress, pulled over their vehicle on the southbound Interstate 15. Polo merchandise and approximately $3,100 worth of items from retail stores outside the area were found in the vehicle. (Source desertdispatch.com)

Jewelry store hit in Fashion Valley Mall outside of San Diego.  Police are still looking for an armed man who robbed the Royal Maui Jewelers in the Fashion Valley Mall this past Saturday evening. The suspect entered the store at 8:31pm with his weapon drawn and threatened the store employee, escaping with an undisclosed amount of watches. No one was injured. (Source cbs8.com)

Ex-Husker memorabilia store employee fills yard sale with stolen merchandise.  Prosecutors said an Omaha man filled his yard sale with stolen merchandise from Husker Hounds. Ryan Coolidge, 28, is a former employee of Husker Hounds who has been charged with felony theft after another employee called police after finding items missing from a warehouse. Investigators said Coolidge tried to sell the University of Nebraska Husker-related items at his house, including two posters signed by former Nebraska football coach Tom Osborne. Police said Coolidge had everything from Husker jerseys to Memorial Stadium art and a pool table cover. (Source wowt.com)

 
Retail Industry Leaders Association
 

RILA Committee Highlight - Horizons Committee
 
Striving for Emerging & Innovative AP Solutions with Solution Providers

By Brand Elverston

The Horizons Committee is comprised of key retail industry partners formed for one specific purpose – to help lead the development of innovative, next-generation solutions across all retail segments. Member companies of the committee share a common vision to advance and expand the current offerings of theft-deterrent solutions while improving the shopping experience for the honest customer.

With initial discussions held in the fall of 2008, it became clear a more formalized and collaborative effort needed to be formed to identify and help the industry become more creative in the development of more state-of-the-art solutions. As a result, the Horizons Committee was formed and after nearly three years of internal reviews of participating retailers, conference calls, in-person meetings and technology provider visits, the committee published the Technology Priorities Document (TPD) in August of 2012. The TPD was initially distributed to more than 200 contacts and firms in relative fields including U.S. government agencies, U.S. defense contractors, current suppliers, academia and non-traditional think-tanks. This year started with the group hosting conference calls where prospective technology providers presented their creative solutions for review/consideration; a process which will continue throughout the year.

These recurring meetings/calls include discussions surrounding technology, retailers’ needs, and identification of prospective non-traditional suppliers. While this group’s scope is a bit unusual in that tangible results are often, and likely, 18 months or more from actual implementation in a retail environment, the long-term vision is designed to drive sustainable change and drive innovation on behalf of the industry.

Potential innovative solution providers are strongly encouraged to participate by first visiting the RILA AP site for New AP Technology in the Retail Marketplace. Review the information and instructions under the “Horizons TPD” tab, selecting one or more areas from the TPD for which you are most interested and suited to participate, and finally submitting a response to the Request for Information (RFI) for presentation to retailers. This will help showcase your innovative and emerging products to the Horizons Committee and member retailers that operate nearly 54,000 retail locations worldwide.

The Horizons Committee is a strategic partnership of engaged retailers providing a collaborative forum to help lead the development of more progressive, transparent and customer-friendly theft-deterrent solutions. As a member of RILA, if you or a member of your AP/LP team is interested in participating on the Horizons Committee, please contact Garth Gasse, director of asset protection.

 
ORC News
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Florida's new federal, state and city ORC task force brings the various prosecutors into the fight  With upwards of 30 ORC associations in the U.S., Rich Mellor, VP of LP for the NRF, says the difference in Florida's new ORC task force is that it brings the various prosecutors into the equation making it a proactive organization that is investigating and making arrests. The introduction of the (Department of Homeland Security) investigating, as well as the U.S. attorney there makes it more practical and able to prosecute these individuals committing these crimes that jump from one state to another and from other city jurisdictions. Now there is a collaborative task force that is not only investigating and making the arrests, but also prosecuting at the same time. The prosecutors are now in the loop, sharing the information and utilizing the information to make effective prosecutions and go after not just the people that are perpetrating the thefts, but also the enterprises that are engaging in a business of making lots of money off of these thefts. This is really a huge step forward as far as collaboration is concerned and it’s a huge step forward in a strategic approach arresting these people and prosecuting them versus just sharing information and hoping to arrest and prosecute. (Source securityinfowatch.com)

ORC suspect who conspired with 5 Wal-Mart employees to steal $57,000 over three months behind bars  David Burgos was responsible for $13,847 worth of electronics gear stolen between November 2012 and February 2013 from the Wal-Mart in Bethlehem, PA. Burgos was the only person involved who was not a Wal-Mart employee, officials noted. When Burgos would enter the store, he would have one of his co-conspirators pretend to ring up merchandise and take it without paying anything for it, officials said. Burgos, 32, of 1108 Amplex St., Bethlehem, was arraigned late Monday night on five charges, including retail theft, receiving stolen property and conspiracy, and committed to the Northampton County Prison on $40,000 bail, according to court documents. (Source wfmz.com)

Police search for serial Home Depot shoplifter in Delaware  The latest incident occurred Tuesday just before 9:30 a.m. where the man walked into the Home Depot at 1301 Churchmans Road, removed a Dewalt Combo Kit from the display and walked out the rear door of the store, said Cpl. John Day. He was seen getting into a black Hyundai Sonata driven by another person. He is described as between 20 and 30 years old, about 6 feet tall and weighing 175 pounds. Anyone with information on his identity is asked to call Troop 6 at 660-3804 or use the state police Mobile Crime Tip App at: http://www.delaware.gov/apps/ (Source delawareonline.com)

Two men swipe $12,000 in cellphones from Wal-Mart in Cherryville, N.C.  Police say the two black men took 16 phones from the electronics department, with a value of more than $12,000 Monday around 2:30 a.m. Surveillance video shows the men getting into a dark colored vehicle that appeared to be a station wagon. (Source wcnc.com)

Chattanooga thief grabs 15 pairs of jeans from JC Penney.  Loss Prevention was able to give police a description and license number off the get a way car, but the suspect and nearly $500 worth of jeans are still missing. The suspect grabbed 15 pairs of jeans and ran from the Penney’s store in the Northgate Mall. (Source chattanoogan.com)

Three women wanted in connection to theft from Sephora in Lake Grove.  Suffolk County Crime Stoppers have released the photos of three women wanted in connection the theft of merchandise form the Sephora store in the Smith Haven Mall back in June. No details were given as to the amount of merchandise that had been stolen, but the reward is $5000. (Source patch.com)

Two men charged in Allegheny County shoplifting spree.
 Keurig coffee makers, Ninja juicers and Lego toys were popular targets of an alleged shoplifting ring that operated regionally. Authorities charged two men in Lawrence County Tuesday with felony counts of racketeering and retail theft, but say the men both Allegheny County residents were active throughout western Pennsylvania and Ohio. The suspects allegedly focused on Walmarts for the merchandise they stole, including 18 stores in Pennsylvania. Among these was the Walmart in Union Township. The office of the Pennsylvania attorney general is charging James E. Austin, 35, of Pittsburgh and Richard D. Scalise, 39, of Monroeville in the case. (Source ncnewsonline.com)

Missouri High Speed Chase ends with 6 arrested after theft at Walmart.  A high-speed chase Monday from Camdenton to Buffalo, Mo., ended in six arrests for a myriad of charges. It all started at 8:15 p.m., July 22, when an employee at the Camdenton Wal-Mart called police about a fraudulent return. An employee detained Dylan Wofford, 18, of Springfield, Mo., until police arrived. The employee also pointed out a GMC Envoy in the parking lot allegedly connected to the crime. Police ran the license plate number and determined the vehicle stolen. The vehicle in the meantime left the Wal-Mart parking lot but was found a short time later at Murphy’s USA. The chase was on. The vehicle headed west on Hwy. 54 at high speeds, attempting to swerve into the patrol vehicle as occupants threw items out of the car. Camden County deputies and Missouri State Highway Patrol assisted with the pursuit and city officers discontinued. The chase ended in Buffalo with all the occupants in custody. Two of the suspects were arrested for assault on a law enforcement officer. (Source lakenewsonline.com)

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Vendor Spotlight
 

The Retail Equation Expands Analytics Group with Five Advanced-Degree Data Scientists

Expansion Supports Customer
Base Growth and Company’s
Predictive Analytics Services


IRVINE, Calif.– The Retail Equation, the industry leader in retail transaction optimization solutions, today announced it has expanded the company’s analytics team with the addition of five new data scientists: Jason Kuang, Ph.D., Issam Mayassi, M.S., James Holland, M.A., Hao Nguyen, M.S., and Peyman Motlagh, M.A. The five will be instrumental in supporting The Retail Equation’s growing customer base and its predictive analytics services.

“As retailers continue to realize significant value from The Retail Equation’s Verify® return authorization solution, this team of data scientists will play an important role in applying increasingly more complex algorithms and modeling techniques to the Big Data that the retail industry is now collecting,” said David Speights, Ph.D., chief statistician for The Retail Equation. “Their combined expertise will allow us to advance the development of our shopper and product-level predictive behavior models—elevating our ability to improve model precision and rapidly develop new solutions for targeted incentives and fraud detection and prevention.”

They will work closely with Speights and the entire analytics team at The Retail Equation to improve upon its unique capabilities in the use of statistical models to maximize revenue and margins for retailers. In addition to the new scientists, the company recently acquired two IBM-Netezza N1001 (TwinFin 12) data warehouse appliances in order to enhance its ability to meet retailers’ need for increased speed of analysis and model complexity.

Prior to joining The Retail Equation, Kuang was a senior statistician for advanced analytics with Kelley Blue Book Co. Inc., where he maintained and refined statistical forecasting models to provide accurate used car values and clustered analysis for consumer segmentation. He earned his doctorate in mathematics and a master’s degree in statistics from the University of California, Riverside, where he also served as an adjunct lecturer for various advanced mathematics courses such as Calculus, Game Theory and Differential Equations. Kuang earned his bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics from South China University of Technology.

Mayassi is joining The Retail Equation after working at TESCO Fresh and Easy Market as a forecasting and demand planning analyst, where he managed the main key performance indicator ordering system to forecast bias and error, lost sales and customer service levels. He also previously worked with CVS as a gross margin analyst to improve margin and profit. He earned his master’s degree in applied statistics and mathematics from California State University, Long Beach and received a bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics from York University, Toronto.

Holland previously held the position of senior software engineer at The Retail Equation, where he was responsible for developing and maintaining the system architecture of the Verify product. He has expertise in low-level networking, database development and administration, and real-time transaction performance. Prior to joining the company, Holland was a software engineer at Credit Suisse First Boston, developing software used for fixed income derivatives trading. He holds a master's degree in mathematics and philosophy from the University of Oxford, United Kingdom.

Nguyen was with the City of Hope Cancer Center as a statistical analyst for seven years prior to joining TRE. He is proficient in statistical programming using SAS and developing reports using both SQL Server Reporting Services and Transact-SQL. He has a master’s degree in applied statistics from California State University-Long Beach and a bachelor’s degree in math from California Polytechnic State University-San Luis Obispo.

Motlagh joins TRE from Chickasaw Nations Industries where he was an ETL/Data Analyst for the company. Previously, he worked for NCI as the data analysis research and development chief. He is experienced in SAS and SQL. Motlagh earned a master’s degree in accounting from Belmont University and a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Hawaii.

About The Retail Equation

The Retail Equation, headquartered in Irvine, Calif., optimizes retailers’ revenue and margin by shaping behavior in every customer transaction. The company’s solutions use predictive analytics to turn each individual shopper visit into a more profitable experience. This yields immediate financial payback, increasing store comps by as much as two percent, with significant return on investment. The Software-as-a-Service applications operate in more than 27,000 stores in North America, supporting a diverse retail base of specialty apparel, footwear, hard goods, department, big box, auto parts and more. For more information, visit www.theretailequation.com.

Contact:
Justine Mrsich
Echo Media Group
714-573-0899, ext. 238
justine@echomediapr.com

 

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The most prevailing comment made by corporate America when they come to market looking for a new senior Loss Prevention executive is bring me someone who has a total business acumen and understands the entire business. Take note to this common theme as it sends a very clear message that you've got to be a retail executive first that happens to be a subject matter expert in Loss Prevention. And as we continue to evolve technologically the demands are greater that you understand the financial, merchandising, supply chain, and operations side of the business and know how to integrate the various shrinkage reduction components within all of them. Being able to communicate all of that is a series of meetings is truly the key and then being able to do it day in and day out is the objective.

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