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Retailers and Suppliers Collaborate to Crack RFID Code

  • August 29 2006, 1:00am EDT

Manufacturing Insights, an IDC company a leader in global technology research for manufacturers and retailers, announces the launch of its a new professional organization for senior executives at supplier and retail organizations to maximize radio frequency identification (RFID) technology. The RFID Executive Council will comprise members from the nation's top retail outlets and supplier organizations for product categories such as Audio/Video, Computing, Media & Entertainment, Appliances, and Lawn & Garden Equipment, as well as thought leaders from Manufacturing Insights' team of industry experts.

Dedicated to providing a forum for retailers and suppliers to share effective practices and network on all RFID-related trends and topics, the RFID Executive Council is scheduled to host its inaugural meeting on September 28, 2006 at the Westin Hotel in Waltham, Mass. The meeting will feature a revolutionary alternative RFID technology being implemented by council participants, Best Buy and Sears. The technology goes directly to item-level tagging for the council's specific product categories.

RFID expert and Council Chairman Pete Abell of Manufacturing Insights, explains, "The retailers involved in this alternative RFID effort are not interested in a mandate, they want their suppliers to invest in the necessary infrastructure because it represents a compelling return to both parties. The product categories we're addressing are more suitable to item-level tagging because the cost of a tag is marginal when selling prices are above $10.00 per unit or as high as thousands of dollars. There are many applications where RFID can substantially improve performance."

With the primary goal of improving manufacturing performance through RFID, council members are encouraged to participate in the proposed focus areas for the Council's business cases (or forum), including:

  • Factory Data Collection and Product Genealogy
  • Warranty and Product Quality
  • Counterfeiting and Diversion
  • End-to-End Supply Chain Visibility, Inventory Accuracy and Management

"Our council takes a practical approach to improving business through RFID. We scope the issue, determine how RFID can improve the process, and deliver a case that can be used by the members to justify investment at their organizations. This three step 'measure, manage, mobilize approach' delivers real value to council participants," adds Bob Parker, vice president of Research at Manufacturing Insights.
General membership fee for the council is $45,000. However, there is no charge for companies in the relevant product categories to attend the inaugural meeting's general sessions on September 28th.

For more information about the RFID Executive Council and/or the inaugural meeting, please contact Paul St. John at (508) 935-4760.

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