News Briefs


Walmart to Nearly Double Health Center Footprint

Walmart Health

Walmart is planning a massive expansion if its Walmart Health centers in 2024.

The retailer announced it will open 28 new locations next year, expanding Walmart Health’s footprint into two new states – Missouri and Arizona – and deepening it presence in Texas. The expansion will bring the total number of Walmart Health centers in the U.S. to 75.

“With this growth in 2024, we will nearly double our current footprint, offering accessible, convenient and affordable care in two new states and expanding our presence in Texas to help the communities we serve live better, healthier lives,” said Dr. David Carmouche, SVP, omnichannel care.

Walmart, which opened its first Walmart Health center in 2019, said it will materialize some of the feedback it has heard from listening to its patients into the new centers. For example, the retailer said it is changing the physical footprint and layout of the center so patients spend less time in the waiting room and has integrated modern equipment and technology into the centers. This includes integrating Epic’s electronic health record system across Walmart Health locations.

The new facilities will be approximately 5,750 square feet, located inside Walmart Supercenters, and will feature Walmart Health’s full suite of health services; the range of services include primary care, dental care, behavioral health, labs and X-ray, audiology and Walmart Health Virtual Care telehealth services.

The first of the new Walmart Health centers will open in the first quarter of 2024. New locations include:

  • 10 locations in Dallas, TX, metro area
  • 8 locations in Houston, TX, metro area
  • 6 locations in Phoenix, AZ, metro area
  • 4 locations in Kansas City, MO, metro area

Brazilian Fashion Retailer Renner Reduces 87% of Stockouts


Renner, one of the largest fashion retailers in Brazil, reports an 87% reduction in stockouts and a 64% increase in inventory accuracy, after implementing technology to optimize its in-store and e-commerce operations.

The retailer’s internal findings and reporting discovered the improvements after implementing Sensormatic Solutions Inventory Intelligence solution, powered by RFID technology, across all its stores in 2019.

According to Renner, more than 500 million of their products sold have been tagged with the RFID technology since 2019, enabling over 4 million item-level readings daily. In addition to increasing the abundance and quality of their data, the retailer can now better optimize the route each product takes from distribution center to stores with greater visibility. With access to real-time data management and product availability, Renner can have accurate inventory information, which is essential for their omnichannel operation.

For example, Renner can now see which items were taken into the fitting room and if they were eventually sold or not. Additionally, shoppers, regardless of the channel (in-store or online), can have better visibility of where a product is located to help choose the right purchase model.

“By leveraging greater inventory intelligence across our physical and online channels, we boosted our omnichannel strategy and digital sales,” said Alexandre Ribeiro, risks director at Renner. “Additionally, with Sensormatic Solutions RFID technology, we have a single source of truth for inventory data which allows our sales associates the ability to process our inventory in a matter of hours on a monthly basis, rather than annually.”

Sensormatic Solutions, the global retail solutions portfolio of Johnson Controls, enabled Renner to transform and improve existing processes and technologies throughout its stores by:

  • Using a single smart RFID label: to enable data capture as well as security applications, eliminating the need for additional labels while improving the project’s ROI.
  • Implementing RFID at the checkout: to eliminate the need for barcode readings and improve customer service.
  • Adding RFID alarm pedestals at the store entrance: to provide visibility of theft events and effectiveness of their loss prevention strategies.

As a result of this work, Renner’s deployment of Sensormatic Solutions Inventory Intelligence solution was selected as a finalist in the retail category of the international RFID Journal Awards 2022. Also, Renner earned the ABRAPPE 2022 SUPER PREMIO award that recognizes the company’s innovative implementation of Sensormatic Solutions’ RFID Technology.


German Fashion Retailer Bonita Streamlines Task Management Across All Stores

bonita storefront

Fashion retailer Bonita has revealed plans to streamline operations by implementing a new management solution focused on task completion, inventory accuracy, and increased transaction value. 

The Germany-based company has partnered with Zebra Technologies to roll out the new task management solution. The company said that teams from both companies will work together to deploy the technology in May 2023 across all 470 of Bonita’s stores in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and the Netherlands. Once set in place, the solution will be accessed by in-store associates and area managers on tablets and mobile devices. 

Among the features of Zebra’s Modern Store Framework are a real-time task manager that preselects tasks, lists them in order or priority, and notifies teams when they need to be completed, as well as the Q-Walk auditing system, Q-Chat instant messaging system, and the Q-Forms workflow form creation platform. 

In the lead-up to the rollout, the Zebra and Bonita teams analyzed workflow data to pinpoint potential areas of improvement and opportunity, the company said. 

Commenting on the process, Bonita’s head of sales operations, Marco Seidel described how, in the run-up to the rollout, the company “examined the usability of the solution with colleagues from all areas of the business and received very positive feedback,” adding that they were looking ahead to the next chapter in their transformation journey.


Subway To Roll Out Electric Vehicle Charging Hubs Nationwide

electric vehicle subway charging station

Restaurant brand Subway plans to install a number of EV charging locations across the U.S. in 2023.

The Subway Oasis parks project will feature charging canopies, green space, picnic tables, WiFi access, and playgrounds. As part of a multi-year plan, Subway will start by establishing a series of smaller, high-speed EV charging stations at select new or newly-remodeled Subway restaurants before expanding to the larger “oasis” format further down the line.

The restaurant has partnered with EV infrastructure startup GenZ EV Solutions to implement the plan, and will also work with franchise owners on specific installations. 

“We're constantly exploring new ways to innovate and exceed our guests' expectations for a high-quality, convenient experience,” said Mike Kappitt, Subway’s chief operating and insights officer. “Our partnership with GenZ EV Solutions is a win for our guests, our franchisees, and our planet, creating a dedicated space for drivers to charge their vehicle while enjoying their favorite Subway sandwich.”

Last week, Subway hinted at a possible sale in its future, announcing that shareholders were in talks with J.P. Morgan advisors regarding the sale exploration process. However, the company revealed “no indication of timing or assurance that a sale will occur.” 



Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s Launch Video Retail Training Program With Ammunition Manufacturer TV Ammo


Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s stores, in coordination with Texas-based ammunition manufacturer TV Ammo, Inc.,  have launched a retail training program to educate thousands of managers and store team members at more than 150 Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s locations nationwide.

The mandatory training program, named “True Velocity University,” utilizes four in-depth video “chapters” to familiarize Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s store outfitters not only with the differentiating attributes of True Velocity’s advanced composite-cased ammunition but also to inform them about the company’s corporate culture, brand strategy and disruptive manufacturing technology. Upon completion of the training program, each participating outfitter will be tested on their knowledge of True Velocity and its ammunition.

“We realize that the thousands of individual Bass Pro and Cabela’s outfitters are critical to the success of our partnership with Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s,” said True Velocity Chairman and Co-CEO Kevin Boscamp. “We want to make sure we are equipping them with the knowledge they need to explain why we believe True Velocity is the most advanced ammunition available on the market.”

“True Velocity’s culture of relentless innovation is a tailor-made fit with our company’s commitment of service and value to our loyal and passionate customers,” said Johnny Morris, the founder of Bass Pro Shops and noted conservationist. “We place value in the expert voice of our outfitters to help sportsmen and women find the very best quality gear at our stores. Through this training program, we are partnering with True Velocity to offer our customers the very best experience both in-store and out at the range.”

The deployment of “True Velocity University” is part of a broader strategic partnership between True Velocity and Bass Pro Shops and Cabela’s. Announced in November 2022, the partnership brings True Velocity’s line of composite-cased ammunition to more than 125 Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World and Cabela’s retail locations across the United States and will leverage co-branded marketing efforts to promote an online subscription service enabling customers to order ammunition directly to their doorstep at a discount to retail prices.


Creative Agency BrandLab of EnsembleIQ Wins 5 AVA Digital Awards


BrandLab, the marketing and creative agency operated by RIS’ parent company EnsembleIQ, has earned five 2023 AVA Digital Awards. The international competition awards excellence in digital marketing and web-based design, recognizing creative professionals responsible for the planning, concept, direction, design, and production of digital communications. 

The highlights:

“EnsembleIQ BrandLab collaborates with clients to create custom marketing and creative solutions in retail, healthcare, and hospitality that deliver awareness, engagement, and connections powering business growth,” said Darren Ursino, VP of marketing and brand engagement at EnsembleIQ. “Winning these awards is a testament to our incredible team and the outstanding work we deliver to our clients. We are delighted to be recognized by the AVA Digital Awards for these digital solutions.”