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Summary of Baird RFID Monthly for January

Baird has released its January report. The 19-page document is a worthwhile read for anyone requiring an overview of the industry's last 30 days. For those without time to do so, we have reprinted here the report's summary.
Jan 17, 2008This article was originally published by RFID Update.

January 17, 2008—Wealth and asset management firm Robert W. Baird & Co. has released its RFID Monthly for January. Baird has given RFID Update permission to reprint the Key Developments section (below), which offers the report highlights. For those wanting more detail, the complete 19-page document is available free here.

The standard matrix of primary RFID providers is on page 13, and following are the Key Developments:
  • Retail Traction Better Than Most Believe. We continue to hear comments that the retail mandates are non-existent. However, given what we hear from several industry players, retail is actually gaining momentum. We are clearly hearing of good pilots in apparel, books, and DVDs, and we expect to see expansion in each of these areas given the generally high value of these items, the large SKU count, and the complex supply chain to bring such goods to market. Marks & Spencer has rolled out, and Levis, Best Buy, Metro, Dillard's, and New Balance, among others, are piloting. In this edition, we highlight some additional retail applications in the "RFID Briefs" section. We also note that contactless payment systems at point-of-sale appear to be gaining momentum. We expect the additional mandate from Sam's Club will help drive new interest.
  • Sam's Club Mandate. Sam's Club has informed suppliers that beginning January 30 they will be required to place RFID tags on pallets into its DeSoto, Texas, facility. For suppliers that do not tag such shipments, Sam's will tag pallets at their distribution center(s), charging the suppliers at cost. We understand six additional distribution centers (DC) will be added in October of 2008, with all dry DCs under mandate by January 2009. Case-level tagging will be required in the DeSoto facility by October of 2008, at the six additional facilities by January 2009, and at all dry DCs by October 2009. Sam's has also indicated that item-level tagging will begin at DeSoto in February 2009. Detailed information is expected to be posted to Retail Link by mid-November. We provide additional granularity in the "RFID Briefs" section. (See Sam's Club Suppliers May Face RFID Fines from Wal-Mart and Sam's Club Wants Item-Level RFID Tagging by 2010 for coverage of the Sam's Club mandate.)
  • BizTalk Platform Helping System Integrators. We believe that RFID software development has lagged from the key WMS and ERP players. However, we are seeing several system integrators looking to leverage the BizTalk platform with their own branded applications. These integrators believe they gain increased credibility and access to support with the Microsoft association.
  • Case Study: Promega Tracks Consigned Inventory. In this edition, we profile Promega, a Wisconsin-based provider of life science products, which is using RFID to track consigned inventory of over 1,400 SKUs. Promega believed so strongly that RFID could provide value that they formed a subsidiary, Terso Solutions, to develop the entire solution. After five years of development and over 400 installations, the solution is providing strong ROI, including a substantial reduction in shrinkage, fewer inventory inspections, faster billing, and less product expiration.

Download the full Baird RFID Monthly (pdf)
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