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Retail Tech: XXL Brings 3D Foot Scanning to Stores, Pitney Bowes Launches Same-Day Delivery

The weekly Retail Tech Roundup compiles technology news across the supply chain, manufacturing, retail, e-commerce, logistics and fulfillment sectors.

Fit technology

Superfeet/Volumental

XXL, a specialty sport retailer with locations in Norway, Sweden, Finland and Austria, is bringing its customers a 3D personalized fit experience with the Fit ID foot scanner powered by Superfeet,  Volumental and Fitstation by HP.

As many as 205 retailers globally now enable shoppers to receive these individualized footwear solutions, including ME3D custom insoles.

With the technology, customers can receive a personal assessment that includes 3D foot scans, pressure measurements and a dynamic gait analysis to identify their unique motion path. Superfeet is then able to create ME3D individualized insoles designed specifically for the unique way each person moves.

In a socially distanced and responsible manner, customers can receive a premium shopping experience, and have customized insoles shipped to them in about two weeks. For retailers, it means the ability to sell an inventory-less product while providing the most sophisticated fit experience possible.

“Our partnerships with both Superfeet and Volumental have allowed us to provide the best customer-centric experiences, products and footwear solutions, and this partnership marks another huge step forward in continuing to do so,” says Joey Pointer, CEO and president of Fleet Feet, which has leveraged versions of the Fit ID platform in certain stores since 2017.

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Supply chain

Stord

Stord, a cloud-based digital warehouse and distribution network, has raised a $31 million Series B led by venture capital firm Founders Fund. The new funding will fuel the company’s growth as it builds out what it calls “the first end-to-end cloud supply chain.”

The new funding brings Stord’s total investment to $46 million, and its valuation to roughly $200 million. The team has spent the year building up Stord’s software, incorporating freight and last-mile logistics capabilities, as well as adding e-commerce fulfillment abilities. Over the summer, Stord acquired Missouri-based Cove Logistics for less than $10 million.

Over the past year, the Stord team has grown from 40 to over 125 employees, while the company’s logistics revenue has grown nearly 500 percent and its software segment has grown over 900 percent. In that time span, the company’s shipment volume has grown more than 15,000 percent.

The Series B also included significant participation from existing investors Kleiner Perkins, Susa Ventures, and Dynamo, as well as participation from strategic investors such as Jeffrey Raider at Good Friends Fund and Karen Page at B-Capital, the venture arm of Boston Consulting Group.

CommerceHub

CommerceHub, a provider of e-commerce solutions and supply chain software for enterprise retailers and brands, received a strategic investment by global venture capital and private equity firm Insight Partners.

Bloomberg reports that the deal is a majority transaction that values the New York-based e-commerce platform operator at $1.9 billion.

This investment is designed to accelerate CommerceHub’s platform innovation and expand its solutions to realize the company’s digital supply chain vision.

The platform saw significant uptick since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, with online order volumes increasing nearly 80 percent year over year since March.

CommerceHub’s existing investors, GTCR and Sycamore Partners, will both retain stakes in the company.

Pitney Bowes/SendPro

Global commerce solutions provider Pitney Bowes launched the Pitney Bowes Same-Day Delivery through its cloud-based SendPro Online sending platform, designed for SMBs to offer delivery service levels and meet increasingly high shipping expectations.

The company is also launching SendPro Delivery Assurance, a domestic delivery service for USPS Priority Mail business customers which, in the event of a shipment being delayed, enables the sender to request a credit for a shipping label charge. The new services are designed to offer greater choice, visibility and peace of mind to businesses managing time-critical shipments while keeping costs down.

SendPro Online and SendPro device customers using the all-in-one sending platform can access rates, track shipments and monitor spend for all shipping activities across carriers and services, providing clear visibility of costs and activity whether sending from a traditional workplace or remote location. With carrier networks currently under pressure to manage phenomenal volumes, Same-Day Delivery gives businesses an alternative channel for high-priority shipments, while Delivery Assurance offers confidence that packages which do not arrive on time are eligible for a credit.

To access Pitney Bowes Same-Day Delivery, users can enter their shipment details and SendPro Online matches the user’s shipment with the most cost-effective option whenever possible, providing dependable delivery with an average two-hour door-to-door delivery window for any delivery up to $500 dollars.

Senders can compare overnight and other same-day services from Pitney Bowes service providers and select the service which best meets their requirements. Users can opt to receive SMS text updates and track deliveries on an interactive map and for further reassurance can choose to receive complimentary proof-of-delivery options.

When SendPro Delivery Assurance is selected, if a USPS Priority Mail package does not arrive on time, the customer can request a credit for the shipping label charge. The option also provides shippers with free package pickup service at their home or office, free USPS tracking, up to $50 of insurance with most shipments and no surcharges for fuel or residential, rural and regular Saturday delivery.

PLM

Centric Software

Centric Software has unveiled the latest release of its flagship Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) solution, Centric 8 PLM version 7.2, which now includes a social chat functionality designed for remote collaboration.

The platform includes Conversations for formal threaded communications on various aspects of products being developed in Centric PLM. The new upgrade also integrates with Slack so that users can chat informally about product updates in real time without leaving the PLM environment. Slack is the first of many connections to enterprise-wide messaging solutions with future integrations planned with Microsoft Teams, Google Workspace, We Chat, DingTalk and more.

Version 7.2 introduces multiple 3D innovations as well, with users can now being able to create new 3D materials in Centric using components of existing 3D materials. Centric has extended the management of 3D digital assets to include 3D avatars, allowing designers and product developers to import and organize 3D avatars in avatar libraries within Centric PLM.

Centric 8 v7.2 also introduces a host of other UI/UX improvements and enhancements for increased efficiency, ease of use and speed to market.

User experience

Crocs/GiftNow

Crocs has incorporated GiftNow from Loop Commerce into its digital storefront to accelerate its digital gift card operations and offer a broad selection of e-gift cards.

“We want to delight our customers and those they shop for every single day, whether it’s in the store, on their mobile devices or web browsers. As physical gift cards are very popular in our stores, we want to ensure that e-gift and digital gift cards are as easily accessible and provide a superior experience for the gifter and recipients who are shopping online at crocs.com,” said Feliz Papich, senior director of digital Growth at Crocs. “The GiftNow solution has allowed us to do that seamlessly while also providing the ability to personalize the e-gifting experience.”

The GiftNow gift experience management (GXM) platform manages gifting operations from gift card enablement to gifting curation and personalized gift delivery. With GiftNow, consumers can send personalized digital gifts and gift cards in seconds via email and text, and recipients can exchange or modify their items before they ship.

The GiftNow platform has also expanded its set of capabilities to enable gift card promotional programs, including Buy-One-Get-One (BOGO) or Give-One-Get-One card promotions.

Fulfillment

ShipMonk

ShipMonk, a provider of e-commerce fulfillment and technology solutions, has secured a $290 million growth equity round led by global growth investor Summit Partners. The financing represents a minority stake in the business and will help further accelerate ShipMonk’s growth through continued investment in R&D, hiring, the development of B2B fulfillment capabilities and international expansion.

The company also announced the addition of Summit Partners’ managing director Christopher Dean and vice president Chelsea Jurman to its board of directors.

In 2020, ShipMonk will generate more than $140 million in revenues, representing growth of more than 100 percent over the prior year. This growth is fueled by continued acceleration in customers’ online sales. In November, ShipMonk’s customers saw an additional surge in online volume, representing 115 percent more fulfilled orders than the same time period in 2019, and the company says momentum has sustained as the holiday season has progressed.

ShipMonk’s customer base has doubled over the past 12 months, and today the company serves more than 1,000 e-commerce businesses, including Cuts Clothing.

Orders are processed at ShipMonk’s U.S. warehouse locations strategically located throughout the country to facilitate fast delivery of products to customers. Highly automated warehouse operations help ShipMonk’s customers save up to 50 percent of the operational costs compared to doing fulfillment in house and provide a scalable solution for hyper-growth, the company says.

As merchants using ShipMonk’s technology and fulfillment broaden beyond DTC, the company has planned more product and solutions enhancements to assist in the evolving needs of B2B fulfillment.

3D Design

CLO Virtual Fashion/PTC

CLO Virtual Fashion, a 3D garment simulation technology provider, is partnering with PTC to integrate its FlexPLM platform within its own standard PLM plugin CLO-Vise to facilitate a more seamless and efficient end-to-end digital workflow for apparel industries.

Through this integration, users can acquire and share vital product information directly between FlexPLM and CLO, providing brands and designers with a unified solution that accesses the entire spectrum of product information such as color, trims and material libraries from FlexPLM all from within the CLO software. In addition, 3D products can now be uploaded directly to FlexPLM from CLO.

This new integration between FlexPLM and CLO aims to help brands reduce time, development costs, and material consumption, facilitating a more sustainable and efficient product development process by increasing designer efficiency and productivity.

The CLO-Vise Plugin, which enables this integration, can now be purchased through a yearly subscription plan.

Shoppable video

Clinch

Clinch, a personalization platform that provides cross-channel dynamic creative optimization (DCO) technology to advertisers, announced launch of its real-time shoppable video ad units.

The Clinch shoppable video solution is designed to transform standard video ad experiences from an upper funnel awareness tactic to a powerful performance tool, to better capture audience engagement and lead customers down the digital path to purchase, across any screen.

Advertisers can now incorporate unlimited and rich data feeds, such as location, inventory, products, and offers, all in real time. Clinch shoppable videos can also accommodate functions that promote user interactivity, such as QR codes, surveys/polls, message sequencing, gamification, dynamic maps and more.

Clinch says its shoppable video ads garner higher engagement rates than display and retargeting, and are in high demand among many clients.

In addition to building custom shoppable templates, Clinch’s decision engine is designed to analyze and apply complex decisioning logic in real time, to show the right products to the right person in the most relevant environment.

Clinch shoppable video works with a client’s existing assets, and is built using Clinch Xenon, the company’s proprietary rapid video rendering technology.

Buy now, pay later

Affirm

Affirm has acquired Canadian installment payments provider PayBright for a total cash and equity consideration of approximately CAD $340 million ($265.6 milllion).

The combination of Affirm and PayBright unites two “buy now, pay later” platforms with complementary merchant relationships and deeply aligned cultural values, and creates a payment solutions platform with expanded scale and reach. Together, Affirm and PayBright will have a larger and more diverse merchant network across the United States and Canada. Affirm says that PayBright’s first-mover advantage in Canada provides it the opportunity to continue to expand further in the market.

The acquisition comes only a few weeks after Affirm revealed it was filing for an IPO. The company has 6.5 million users and partners with 6,000 merchants including retail giants such as Walmart and Shopify.

POS

Teamwork Commerce

Footwear retailer John Fluevog Shoes, which has 25 stores across Canadathe NetherlandsAustralia, and the U.S., has implemented cloud-based, mobile retail technology Teamwork Commerce to fortify its mobile point-of-sale (mPOS) capabilities, as well as BigCommerce as its new e-commerce platform. With the new technology integrations, John Fluevog Shoes will now have a full omnichannel platform designed to seamlessly support the entire customer journey.

Teamwork’s mPOS will provide John Fluevog associates with complete visibility into customers, inventory and orders, opening up new service experiences for their customers in-store and online.

This includes endless aisle capabilities, where associates can now access and sell inventory from any store location while supporting the mobile customer journey with buy online, pick-up in store and buy online, return in-store.

“We’ve been looking to upgrade our e-commerce and POS technologies for a number of years now,” said said Adrian Fluevog, CEO of John Fluevog. “Finding the right partners to help us reach our automation and integration goals seemed like a daunting task at first but we’re very excited to have Teamwork’s experience and expertise on our side. We’re looking very much forward to the global omnichannel platform will have for our customers and staff alike.”