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RedPrairie Acquires Escalate Retail: Exclusive Insights from VP of Product Strategy

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In its third major acquisition in a month, RedPrairie has acquired Escalate Retail. Escalate will bring to RedPrairie the ability to enhance multi-channel retailing with order capture, POS, store kiosk and call center operations. In January, RedPrairie announced the acquisition of SofTechnics and Shippers Commonwealth, a SaaS transportation management systems provider.

Earlier in 2010 RedPrairie was acquired by New Mountain Partners, a private equity fund sponsored by New Mountain Capital. To date, New Mountain has fulfilled its promise to facilitate RedPrairie’s growth. “We intend to work closely with RedPrairie’s management team and help them accelerate their growth and strategic development…,” noted Alok Singh, Managing Director of New Mountain, in a March 24, 2010 statement.

“If we use the acquisition of New Mountain as a starting point, it did provide additional focus on growth for RedPrairie,” noted Tom Kozenski, Vice President of Product Strategy, RedPrairie, in an interview with Retail TouchPoints. “In conjunction with that, we have been looking at a number of acquisitions. Of course, acquisitions such as Escalate didn’t happen overnight. We have been playing out the business value of this type of acquisition over a period of time.”

Regarding Escalate, Kozenski said: “We are very excited in the potential of how it builds out our existing platform. Combined with the current RedPrairie platform of inventory optimization from a supply chain standpoint as well as customer experience in store, we are now prepared to extend the customer experience to the omni-channel. With the tools through Escalate, we will be able to capture the customer order from any channel, provide an excellent and consistent customer experience across all touch points, and ultimately fulfill the order exactly the way the customer wants it.”

Escalate’s solutions deliver all-channel commerce capabilities for more than 500 retail brands, including St. John Knits, The Buckle, Hot Topic, Coldwater Creek, EILEEN FISHER, and The Louvre. Escalate also serves 11 of the largest 100 retailers worldwide.

“With this acquisition, RedPrairie will be ideally positioned to manage both supply chain and retail activities, from the time a customer first makes contact with the retailer-no matter the channel, touch point, or device-- all the way through to fulfillment,” said Mike Mayoras, CEO, RedPrairie. “Additionally, we have enhanced our ability to leverage our Workforce and Inventory Management solutions to help retailers optimize inventory and fulfillment processes regardless of where the order is in the supply chain.”

“The consumer has evolved,” added Stewart Bloom, CEO of Escalate Retail. “More than ever, consumers are using a number of different channels to interact with retailers outside of the store from online and mobile devices, to call centers and social media among others. Our merging with RedPrairie results in unparalleled capabilities to optimize the customer experience, from search to sale to delivery.”

Should we be on the lookout for more acquisitions by RedPrairie in the near term? “While there is no way to give early exposure to our plans, I think the next thing you can expect from us is further articulation around our product roadmaps and product suite at this point,” said Kozenski. “That will be what you’re hearing from us over the next few months.”

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