VeriSign acquires Retail Solutions; delivers POS data services to WWRE members

Source: VeriSign

VeriSign, Inc. (Nasdaq: VRSN), the leading provider of intelligent infrastructure services for the Internet and telecommunications networks, today announced the acquisition of Retail Solutions, Inc. (RSI), a leading provider of operational point-of-sale (POS) data to the retail industry.

The addition of RSI's customers and core technology to VeriSign's Intelligent Supply Chain Services platform extends the growing role VeriSign's scalable, secure infrastructure is playing in the $8 trillion worldwide supply chain. Operational POS data provides detailed information about the volume and value of product sales through retailers, and is increasingly being combined with other "demand data" and new technologies such as RFID to increase sales and reduce costs, benefiting both retailers and their suppliers. In conjunction with the acquisition of RSI, VeriSign also announced today, an agreement with the World Wide Retail Exchange (WWRE) to deliver POS services through WWRE's global platform, enhancing store-level visibility to thousands of retailers and suppliers worldwide.

RSI counts more than 130 industry leaders as customers, including Unilever and GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare. The RSI platform provides these customers with a secure, single point of access to POS data from over 30 key retailers. The addition of this capability to the existing VeriSign Intelligent Supply Chain Services platform increases the scope of services VeriSign offers to retail supply chain participants and enhances the infrastructure VeriSign has been developing in the RFID/EPC and pharmaceutical supply chain markets to deliver real time, relevant data for decision making.

"VeriSign is increasingly working to leverage its strengths - secure, scalable infrastructure - to provide value to customers and partners in the supply chain," said Ann Grackin, chief executive officer of ChainLink Research. "With the addition of POS data services, VeriSign has taken a big step forward in this area. Both end users and solutions providers in the retail space can now leverage the VeriSign platform for streamlined access to critical information that today must be gathered from many different sources and in many different formats."

"RSI is a great addition to VeriSign's critical infrastructure in the global supply chain," said Mark McLaughlin, senior vice president of VeriSign's Naming and Directory Services. "The retail industry is increasingly looking for new avenues of visibility from manufacturing plant to store floor, and demand data - including POS information - is a critical component. With the addition of RSI, we add over one hundred customers and billions of streamed data records to our platform."

RSI has approximately 50 full-time employees and offices in Lincoln, Rhode Island.

The price of the acquisition was approximately $24 million in cash and it is being accounted for as a purchase transaction.

Separately, VeriSign and the Worldwide Retail Exchange (WWRE) today announced an agreement to offer point-of-sale (POS) data services to WWRE members creating more timely access, exchange, and management of information throughout the $8 trillion global retail supply chain.

The agreement between the two organizations adds POS data services to the WWRE platform providing global store-level visibility to thousands of retailers and suppliers worldwide. Today's retailers and suppliers are placing an increased emphasis on combining "demand signals" such as POS data, with emerging sources of real-time information such as product movement information provided by RFID. The agreement between WWRE and VeriSign helps make available a global, secure and scalable platform reaching a broad set of industry leaders in the retail supply chain.

"POS data is one of the most confidential pieces of data in our business," said John Gleeson, SVP, Corporate Strategy and Treasurer, Walgreen Company. "WWRE is our trusted industry platform and VeriSign has experience providing security and scalability with high data volume. We think this partnership will provide a great way for us to share POS data with our manufacturing partners."

The WWRE is a trusted agent of data exchange for more than 30 global retailers with combined revenue of more than $900 billion annually. Over 200 consumer products suppliers use WWRE's collaborative solutions and thousands of companies have conducted business transactions totaling more than $12 billion using the WWRE platform. WWRE was founded by leading global retail companies, with investors that include Aeon, Albertsons, Auchan, Casino, CVS/pharmacy, Delhaize/Food Lion, Kingfisher, Lotte, Royal Ahold, Safeway, Tesco and Walgreen's.

"The addition of POS data services to our existing platform significantly improves our manufacturing customers' ability to serve their retail trading partners," said Christopher Sellers, CEO WWRE. "This is the solution that our members, and the market as a whole, have been waiting for - enabling clear, measurable benefits to trading partner relationships, without major capital investment or significant business process change."

VeriSign's Intelligent Supply Chain Services provide secure, scalable infrastructure services for critical supply chain data - including POS - for global supply chain participants and their vendors. These participants have for years been working to garner additional data points to feed analytic and decision making applications, with the ultimate goal of increasing sales and lowering costs. VeriSign has taken a leadership role in providing the secure infrastructure to enable the sharing of this data on a global basis, via the WWRE, with a strong focus on store-level visibility in the retail supply chain.

"The WWRE/VeriSign relationship extends the reach of our supply chain infrastructure services to WWRE's community of global retailers and suppliers," said Jeff Richards, vice president of VeriSign's Intelligent Supply Chain Services business. "WWRE and VeriSign share a common vision for providing granular, global visibility in the retail supply chain in a secure, scalable manner. We've also both been able to establish trusted relationships with some of the largest corporations in the world - a major component of this collaboration and the role we're playing as we expand the scope of information available to supply chain participants."

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