PROFILE

Harley Feldman

Co-Founder and CMO, Seeonic, Inc.
Harley Feldman is the Co-Founder and Chief Marketing Officer of Seeonic. He has more than 30 years of experience in information technology including database management, Internet applications, predictive analytics, process re-engineering and global solutions. Mr. Feldman spent more than 20 years at Ceridian Corporation; the last ten years in the defense group, in positions of increasing responsibility (including as Vice President of Sales and Marketing, and Vice President of two major operations providing technology and services to the intelligence community). In addition, he previously served as Chief Technology Officer and Chief Executive Officer of two healthcare software companies. Mr. Feldman holds a BS degree in chemistry and computer science from Illinois Institute of Technology and a MBA degree in finance from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management. Mr. Feldman co-founded Seeonic, one of the first companies to build a complete IoT solution in the item level RFID space. Seeonic was granted a patent for its solution including RFID tag collection, hands-free operation, real-time alerting and analytics and built the largest commercial RFID network in the US. Mr. Feldman was the executive overseeing this development with attention to RFID readers, tags, serialization, the cellular connections required to deliver the data, and software for data collection, data cleansing, data storage, and analytics. Seeonic was also one of the founding members of the RFID Research Center at the University of Arkansas. Mr. Feldman attended annual University of Arkansas RFID conferences each year, where much of the early RFID directions and recommendations were made. Mr. Feldman also served on the GS1 Tag Serialization Committee until its successful completion. He is currently the Seeonic representative on the GS1 US Apparel and General Merchandise Industry Sponsors Group and spends his time growing the use of RFID in the retail, healthcare and industrial industries especially the management of vendor-managed and consigned inventory for brands. For more information, visit: <a href="http://www.seeonic.com/"><strong>www.seeonic.com</strong></a>
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  • Posted on: 03/26/2020

    Should retail associates be treated like frontline health responders?

    Yes, they do. They interact with people all day long who are potential virus carriers. I just returned from Costco who is working hard to keep shoppers six feet apart. All of those shoppers go through the checkout lines facing the cashiers who are handling the shoppers at a steady pace. Some grocers are giving bonuses to employees which is a nice touch for those working hard and facing the public.
  • Posted on: 03/24/2020

    Retailers are going to curbside and delivery. Will they stay that way?

    Retailers and restaurants are likely to keep some of these drive-up practices when the pandemic is gone. However, people like going to restaurants to enjoy the ambience, the personal contact and the fresh and hot food. For retailers, shoppers often want personal advice and help on products for sale and will want to come in the store. But also, BOPIS orders will accelerate and will be table stakes for retailers in the future. On the downside, if restaurants and retailers were to keep all of the current practices, they would not need to hire back many of their employees. I don't see that happening even though some of the current practices will be kept for a segment of their customers.
  • Posted on: 03/23/2020

    Costco is refusing returns on hoarded items

    I absolutely agree with Costco's no-return policies on hoarded items. It is a travesty to see people behave this way in times of a crisis. Rather than pass legislation directed at this problem, Costco's approach will likely be followed by other retailers relieving the interest in hoarding. Retailers can limit the number of items per sale, throttling store purchases. Another solution is to increase supply. Producers who are able should increase production and take the pressure off the increased demand in stores.
  • Posted on: 03/18/2020

    Will Lands’ End have a better experience inside of Kohl’s than it did at Sears?

    Kohls's will be a good fit for Lands' End. Sears was an odd choice since the chain was slowing down and apparel is not the first thing most people think about buying at Sears. Kohl's will get a strong brand, and Sears will get desirable locations with a retailer that focuses on apparel. Time will tell, but Lands' End is such a well known brand, a store-within-a-store concept should work best. Customers will provide data as to whether the brands should be mixed.
  • Posted on: 03/12/2020

    Is opening pharmacies in other chain stores CVS’s new thing?

    CVS is likely to continue to grow operating inside big box retail stores. It must be working at Target, there is no cost to build new store locations other than remodeling, and the customer traffic from the retailer will be readily accessed by CVS, and the CVS brand will be expanded. Expanding through existing retailers is a preferable approach as CVS can expand more rapidly at a lower cost than constructing new standalone stores. It also provides CVS with a customer base from the retailer.
  • Posted on: 03/10/2020

    Will rival retailers buy Amazon’s ‘Just Walk Out’ technology?

    Some retailers may find usefulness in the Amazon Go technology, especially those that can eliminate labor. However with the number of cameras and amount of infrastructure required to implement Amazon Go, the cost to implement is high, so the return will depend on the store volume and the price of the items sold. In addition, Amazon will use its own cloud at cost for the data while other retailers will have to pay Amazon retail prices for the cloud technology. The potential for use in Amazon stores is higher, but some chains of stores may find the technology to have an ROI. I suspect the "deals to date" are test sites for the technology and no retailer has signed up for production use just yet.
  • Posted on: 03/05/2020

    Should Amazon pay a penalty for counterfeits sold in its marketplace?

    If the Shop Safe Act becomes law, Amazon and others would need to test every claim on every product listed. This would be a difficult and expensive process requiring a plethora of skills. It would require online marketplaces to change the way they operate by requiring a guarantee to the consumer of product quality. E-commerce providers should do some level of due diligence on the products they sell. However having them guarantee the quality of all of their offerings is too huge a step. They should attempt to push the counterfeit product risk back on their suppliers.
  • Posted on: 03/04/2020

    Are strip centers where it’s at for Macy’s and Sephora?

    Strip malls tend to be smaller, easier to park, closer to home and configured with store to meet the local demand. Rather than fight the crowds and parking issues at the large malls, consumers can typically be in and out more quickly and not saddled with big crowds. Macy's (in smaller stores) and Sephora should be successful in strip malls as they will be easier to get to and probably closer to the consumer's home. As there are many more strip malls than large malls providing more location opportunities for both Macy's and Sephora.
  • Posted on: 03/03/2020

    Has the UPC outlived its usefulness?

    Deciding which is the best scanning technology is the wrong issue to focus on. The real value of the collected data is magnified when the product code is married with the product attributes like price, time on shelf, expiration, source, etc. Adding all of these attributes to the product label is difficult, expensive or impossible in the case of UPC Codes. Consider the product identification as a license plate to the remainder of the attribute data accessible quickly and cheaply from the Cloud. It does not matter which technology is used to scan and collect the product identification. Used this way, retailers will not be forced to convert their scanning systems to reference the latest attribute data. The retailer can evolve from UPC Codes to QR codes to RFID at a pace they can afford and get value from along the way. In the long run, RFID is the best technology since it is wireless and does not need to be scanned in optically straight on. The major obstacle to RFID is the cost of the reading infrastructure which will become smaller and cheaper in the future.
  • Posted on: 03/02/2020

    Will coffee subscriptions raise some dough for Panera?

    This appears to be a great idea based on the test markets data. Since the coffee is free after five cups, it will draw their subscribing customers for return visits, and they are likely to buy other items when picking up their coffee. Competitors will notice and likely follow. Success metrics are the number of return visits from their members that purchase the coffee subscription and the incremental sales for additional items from the same group.
  • Posted on: 02/28/2020

    Will a new subscription program be Walmart’s winning answer to Amazon Prime?

    Walmart may be playing catchup, but they have over 4,000 stores and will leverage those stores in any program they create. Already, the Delivery Unlimited program distinguishes Walmart from Amazon in the grocery delivery category. If Walmart adds other categories like gasoline and prescriptions, they will one-up Amazon in a big way. Another perk that Walmart might add is prepared food delivery.
  • Posted on: 02/25/2020

    Amazon goes bigger with its cashier-less store concept

    Great accomplishments with the technology, although no accuracy claims were made in the article or video. The other issue not mentioned is the cost of the camera infrastructure and the web services (owned by Amazon) to make it work. In other words, the value provided vs. the cost is not discussed. Amazon will proceed with the Go stores if the cost/benefit ratio works. Several competitors, like 7-Eleven, are trying the technology also and this Amazon Go "success" will press them to move forward with their trials.
  • Posted on: 02/24/2020

    What are the biggest barriers to AI adoption for retailers?

    The biggest two points are accuracy in store inventory and customer intelligence to understand real demand. Very few people understand what true AI technology is so they are implementing rules-based engines which are better than nothing but do not provide the benefits of technologies like machine learning which require a higher skill level. The big benefits to retailers will only occur when advanced technologies can be utilized. Getting in the way is the accuracy and granularity of data collected and the skills required to implement such AI.
  • Posted on: 02/21/2020

    What does private equity ownership hold for Victoria’s Secret?

    Sycamore Partners is likely to close low performing stores, move the uniqueness of the brand from an emphasis on sexiness to fashion, broaden the size selection and worker harder on online sales. Expect L Brands to take on the role of advisor and operate the stores.
  • Posted on: 02/19/2020

    Shoppers have a love/hate relationship with self-checkouts

    In most cases, self-checkout provides more convenience than annoyance except for weight measuring sensors. For a small number of items, the self-checkout lines are typically much quicker than finding a short line at the cashier-based registers. The weight sensors make many mistakes and slow down the lines dramatically. Glad that Target and Walmart have removed them. Another technology that might work is a vision system that recognizes the purchase item without having to position the barcode. However, vision systems are technically difficult to develop to work with all products in all orientations. RFID is another technology that allows the RF signal to capture the UPC code regardless of orientation. Some retailers are moving forward with RFID. Concerns over cashier job losses need to be listened to. However cost savings usually win out in the long run as no one likes higher prices. The cashier-less systems are a result of stores cutting labor costs, and this trend will continue.

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