Peter Charness

Retail Strategy - UST Global

Peter Charness is a software/retail executive with significant experience (domestic and international) in innovating solutions for the retail and CPG industries.

As a CEO, Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Product Officer, Peter excels at revenue generation through areas such as, product management, product marketing and development, positioning, lead generation, Marcom and business/sales development. He is also experienced in mergers and acquisitions and partnerships

As a VP of Logisitics and Technology (CIO) Successful history of providing the right leadership and experience for inventory management and optimization for the Retail supply chain.

Specialties include:

Industry leading experience and capabilities in all manners of solutions for retailers and CPG Companies.

Particular emphasis on inventory optimization, retail ERP, merchandise planning and inventory management, POS and store operations, CRM and category management.

Significant depth in business intelligence, product management, product marketing, industry marketing, and inventory management.

  • Posted on: 02/28/2020

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

    Amazon or not -- this is what shoppers want, and Walmart is pursuing shopper convenience as much as they may be pursuing Prime. I think this is an interesting opportunity to see if Walmart is also enlarging its customer base, with an online shopper who may not be an existing in-store shopper. Certainly with a store distribution network Walmart can likely hit this capability better than Amazon.
  • Posted on: 02/27/2020

    Walgreens embroiled in a stressed-out pharmacist scandal

    Hi Erik, I have a minor disagreement -- I think that putting in a policy that stretched performance at the expense of safety is also a mistake, just as you note covering it up was also a mistake. Cheers.
  • Posted on: 02/27/2020

    How can retailers bring the best of digital commerce to physical stores?

    There's a bit of the Wild West to all the new capabilities that are emerging. What retailers should not do is go the traditional route, of study, specify, RFP and take years from concept to go-live. Jump in and try something and encourage a culture of experimentation. Retail is about reinvention right now. Now is the time for companies to step out of their traditional comfort zones and try some new things. And remember it's called "test and learn" not sit and wait.
  • Posted on: 02/27/2020

    Walgreens embroiled in a stressed-out pharmacist scandal

    We have embraced a culture of "measure everything" and continuous improvement, that's OK. However there is the possibility that the standards of performance are set by committees, or by people who don't have first-hand knowledge of what it takes to do a job properly and safely. Without some reason for improvement like new technology, or methods and processes, at some point you have to ask the question, why should an individual (pharmacist, Amazon stock picker, etc.) be able to improve by a further 5 percent just because it's a goal? Everyone can't perform as well as the top 10 percent because our workforces aren't staffed with just top 10 percenters. There is a floor for performance and productivity levels aren't going to be improved upon just because we believe they should.
  • Posted on: 02/26/2020

    Will fulfilling third-party vendor orders give Walmart an edge over Amazon?

    With stores already closer to shoppers than Amazon's fulfillment centers, the "physics" of this distribution model should provide Walmart with the advantage. Now the challenge becomes what items should be stocked to go through which stores to get the best blend of most needed items delivered in "acceptable" time to the customer. The transformation needed is a localized assortment "network" and treating the stores as a combination facility, brick and mortar, ship from, pick up in store, and flow through DC....
  • Posted on: 02/26/2020

    Will a CEO’s crowdsourcing plea save Modell’s Sporting Goods?

    In the world of "new retail" power has gone to the brand owners, since distribution channels are now pretty much ubiquitous. If all you are is just another one of the distribution channels, you need some other enduring relationship with the customer -- Modell's and everyone else selling other peoples product will have a hard time growing/sustaining. REI seems to be able to connect with their customers as great brand (with a fair amount of private label). Maybe Modell's can as well, but it's a tough path.
  • Posted on: 02/25/2020

    Will recruiting challenges slow grocery’s digital transformation?

    The shortage of talent I think comes from finding those who have vision and creativity married to pragmatism. That's always been a tough combination to find. After that, retailers will just have to open up their budgets to compete with other industries for talent.
  • Posted on: 02/25/2020

    Amazon goes bigger with its cashier-less store concept

    The payback for this I guess is in customer convenience, and the ability to run 24/7 if in fact they are. The savings in cashier costs, taking into consideration the cost of the hardware, can't be all that impressive -- comments?
  • Posted on: 02/24/2020

    What are the biggest barriers to AI adoption for retailers?

    AI has to be seen through a different lens than the typical IT project. Implementation times are more relative to understanding data and training models, not installing software. This is a process that for some retailers will take a considerable period of time -- months if not years. Furthermore, once implemented models need continuous monitoring and retraining so, unlike a typical solution, the implementation is the start or maybe the middle of the work effort not the completion. More challenging for many retailers will be the recruiting and retention of data scientists able to understand the business and provide this long term care and feeding. AI has great potential, but it's not a magic pill that can be swallowed for immediate benefit.
  • Posted on: 02/21/2020

    What does it take to make collaboration work within organizations?

    Permission to experiment, fail and learn. If teams don't suffer for projects that don't pan out, then individuals have less to worry about in terms of standing out and apart to protect their careers.
  • Posted on: 02/21/2020

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

    Probably nothing good for the employees of Victoria's Secret. Other than the usual cost cutting and leveraging of the balance sheet, hopefully they can create an online presence that really leverages the brand. Victoria's Secret should aim to do 50 percent of their business online as a revitalized brand.
  • Posted on: 02/19/2020

    Shoppers have a love/hate relationship with self-checkouts

    Self-checkout can work just fine. Costco having added self-checkout stations makes it easy to visit that store for just a few items. They have plenty of people supporting the shopper efforts. However self-checkout doesn't mean the retailer can cut the staff down to zero. One person present for four to six checkouts for quick help does the trick. It's the retailers that aren't properly staffing the self-checkouts for the inevitable help needed that don't get it.
  • Posted on: 02/19/2020

    Will store associates become the ultimate personalization tool at retail?

    Store associates are the ultimate personalization. However there are fewer of them out there -- back them up with useful technology to shorten learning curves and help turn them into stars.
  • Posted on: 02/19/2020

    Would Lumber Liquidators floor customers with a new name?

    Rebranding is a difficult and very expensive path to take. Fixing the issues and then leveraging and protecting the brand is likely going to yield better results.
  • Posted on: 02/14/2020

    How will Jetblack lessons inform Walmart’s conversational commerce efforts?

    If retailers want to gain/maintain any momentum then they have to try a variety of approaches and methods. As long as there is applicable learning involved with a reasonable "cost per lesson" this was a good initiative. Retailers have to "test and learn," which of course is not the same as "test and churn," whether it's new products, or new experiences. What doesn't work is standing still.

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