VeriSign Buys Retail Solutions

by Deepak Sharma on Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Here is another company (other being Oracle) that is on buying spree. After buying and RSS content feed provider, Moreover Technologies, Verisign has bought Reatils Solutions Inc.

The deal pushes VeriSign squarely into delivering point-of-sale (POS) data, which is gathered at cash registers when customers pay for merchandise at stores, to retailers and consumer-goods and pharmaceutical companies, including Unilever and GlaxoSmithKline, respectively. "Companies want this data so they know exactly what's happening in a store at any given time," said Jeff Richards, vice president of VeriSign’s Intelligent Supply Chain Services business. "But when you provide this information, you're talking about a massive up-tick in the amount of data, billions and billions of records, you need to process." ...

VeriSign now has the tools to build on its infrastructure services in radio frequency identification (RFID) and electronic product code (EPC) technologies in which POS data increasingly is being combined. VeriSign in May shelled-out $15 million for R4 Global Solutions, a consulting-services vendor that assists companies using RFID, electronic product codes, and other data-related supply-chain technologies.

The goal is to combine services from both acquisitions -- tying POS with RFID/EPC data -- to provide real-time visibility and accurate inventory information on products in the supply chain to consumer goods companies, such as Kimberly-Clark Corp. and Gillette Co., which are working on RFID programs with retailers such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Target Corp., and Albertson's Inc.

Tying the POS with EPC data embedded in RFID tags on cases and pallets of products will give consumer goods companies visibility into when well-timed promotional items, from razors to shaving cream, and advertising displays are brought from back storerooms at retailers and onto store floors. When the products are sold, the POS data is cross-checked against the RFID/EPC data.