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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Elizabeth White, Peter Silva, Glenn Rossman, Kevin Jackson, Michael Jannery

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"Yes, Retailers Can Do Something About Amazon Firefly," Says Upstream Commerce CEO

The new Amazon Fire smartphone with its shopping feature called Firefly "has the potential to set retail on its ear," says retail intelligence executive Amos Peleg. With Firefly, Peleg explains, all a customer has to do is walk into a store, take a picture or plug in the merchandise details, and Amazon responds instantly with the product and order form so the customer will order it immediately and end their product search.

"Amazon is serious and consistent about disrupting brick-and-mortar offline retail by encouraging showrooming every way they can, while, at the same time, they are putting tremendous pressure on online large retailers such as Walmart, Target and others," says Peleg.

"The good news," says Peleg, CEO and co-founder of Upstream Commerce, "is that retailers can meet this latest challenge by taking the following initiatives":

* Differentiate. Differentiate. Differentiate. Avoid competing on the same products as much as possible.

* Continue to further blur the line between store and Web by tightening the connections between the channels. “Webrooming” and store pickup is something Amazon cannot offer.

* Have a clear pricing strategy.

* Optimize pricing based on that strategy.

To differentiate, says Peleg, retailers need to:

* Push even more on creating and growing their private brands.

* Recognize that brand manufacturers are needed as strong partners more than ever, as just pressuring brand manufacturers for getting lower prices is not a win-win strategy.

* Make a joint effort to plan product assortment for minimal direct competition.

"We're going to see all these efforts accelerate -- and take an even more important place in the way retailers and brands are operating," Peleg says. The right tools for enabling that type of brand manufacturer-retailer relationship and for building their own brands will be key for retail success."

Upstream Commerce has provided a download at its Knowledge Center with more details of how retailers can meet these competitive threats.

About Upstream Commerce

Upstream Commerce transforms how retailers around the world grow sales and boost margins through real-time competitive insights, smarter pricing, and optimal product selection. By delivering automated, real-time intelligence and analytics, Upstream Commerce helps companies across more than 15 retailing categories manage their relationship with their brand manufacturers, and optimize pricing, merchandising, promotion and lifecycle management.

Upstream Commerce's cloud-based solutions are purpose-built to simplify and streamline – on a massive scale – the complex data gathering, matching, and processing required for actionable retail intelligence. The Company's advanced analytics enable dynamic pricing, provide rich insights throughout the lifecycle of every product and category, and allow retailers to build and test business scenarios. For a more detailed version of what retailers must do to meet the competition and learn how Upstream Commerce delivers results for some of the largest and most innovative retailers in the world such as Staples, Toys-R-Us, Petco, and e-Bags, go to http://www.UpstreamCommerce.com or call (800) 815-1842.

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