SOURCE: IBM

May 25, 2005 07:00 ET

Innovative Technology Brings Hassle-Free Shopping for International Travelers

Integrated, Linux-Based System From IBM and Triversity Debuts at DFS Galleria in Okinawa; Also Scheduled for Hainan, China

OKINAWA, JAPAN -- (MARKET WIRE) -- May 25, 2005 -- IBM announced today that Duty Free Shops (DFS) is unveiling an innovative new technology system in its giant DFS Galleria mall here that will enable shoppers to easily and seamlessly move quickly through the airport, store their luggage, rent a car, shop at the Galleria and clear their purchases automatically through Customs.

The new integrated, Linux-based technology solution from IBM and its Business Partner, Triversity, also is slated later this year for the new DFS Galleria in Hainan, China, and DFS plans in the future to use variations of the system in its shops throughout the world.

The goal is to integrate advanced technology to create a seamless, convenient shopping experience for travelers as they arrive and depart an airport.

"It is not a matter of adding new systems to our store, but is a new business process for us that is focused entirely on our customers and operational efficiencies," said Robert Yap, CIO of DFS Galleria. "We simply could not handle the volume of customer transactions without automating our processes. We want to make a traveling customer's shopping experience a whole lot easier, smoother and hassle-free."

Here's how the new system works at the DFS Galleria: A traveler arrives at DFS Galleria and is issued a personalized PAX card that contains a smart chip. He checks in his luggage and has it moved directly to his rental car. He then enters the Galleria where he can shop -- customers typically spend anywhere between 3 to 4 hours shopping in the state-of-the-art facility. Even if he buys numerous items at one of the 85 point-of-sale systems in the large store, they all will be combined into one transaction, for easy declaration to customs. At each step along the way, he is identified by his PAX card, and each purchase is recorded automatically to ensure it meets Customs requirements.

The solution is enabled and integrated through the IBM Store Integration Framework software and includes Triversity's Transactionware Enterprise, a Java POS solution, IBM SurePOS 300 point-of-sale systems, and IBM eServers xSeries running the IBM Retail Environment for SUSE LINUX operating system, developed by IBM and Novell.

"DFS is a very innovative example of how retailers around the world are turning to new integrated technology to make shopping easier, more convenient and more fun for their customers," said Jan Jackman, general manager of IBM Retail Store Solutions. "Retailers who can integrate and harness technology like DFS is doing in Okinawa and Hainan will be able to offer the kind of unique services that build customer loyalty and differentiate themselves in a very competitive retail industry."

"This is an advanced, integrated system, but it appears seamless to the shopper, which is essential," continued Mr. Yap. "The new system combines the advantage of open-source Linux with the retail expertise of IBM and Triversity. It's literally one-stop shopping for our customers. A customer can get to the Galleria quickly and focus on shopping for himself and his friends without the pressures of negotiating the many steps through the airport. That's very important for today's travelers."

About DFS

DFS is the world's leading duty-free retailer for international travelers seeking high quality, luxury and destination-specific merchandise at great value and in innovative shopping environments. Established in 1961, DFS has been offering branded merchandise to travelers to purchase both for themselves and as gifts to take back home at significant savings. DFS today has approximately 200 stores in 14 countries throughout Asia and the Pacific Basin, including the West Coast and East Coast of North America. DFS Group Ltd. has U.S. headquarters in San Francisco, with international headquarters in Hong Kong. For more information, visit www.dfsgalleria.com.

About IBM

IBM, the world's largest information technology company, is the leader in providing the Retail Industry with a full range of e-business solutions, including: point-of-sale systems, automated self-checkout systems, other hardware and software technology, consulting focused on business transformation, IT strategy and planning, store operations improvement, and supply chain optimization, and with services, such as outsourcing, managed operations, systems integration, and application development and design. IBM has a list of retail customers in 100 countries worldwide that reads like a "Who's Who" of retailing. For more information on IBM Retail Solutions, please visit http://www.ibm.com/industries/retail.

About Triversity Inc.

Triversity is the fastest growing international provider of customer-centric retail solutions. Triversity's portfolio of solutions enables retailers to transform the Customer Experience throughout the retail enterprise while dramatically improving their operating efficiencies. Retailers around the world have built their businesses around Triversity's market-leading solutions for Point-of-Sale/Point-of-Interaction (POS/POI), Loss Prevention, Retail CRM, Returns Management, Sales Audit, Inventory and Order Management and more. Triversity extends its offerings through partnerships with the industry's leading technology vendors, allowing the company to deliver complete sell-side solutions and services.

Triversity's retail solutions are installed in over 500 retailers in 32 countries, processing billions of transactions a year. Retailers using Triversity's technology solutions include the U.S. Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES), Casa Ley, Comercial Mexicana, Comercial Vh, The Children's Place, Discovery Channel, Dollar General, Hallmark, Rite Aid, Staples -- Business Depot, The Shoe Company, The Sports Authority, The TJX Companies, Wawa and Williams-Sonoma. Triversity's world headquarters is located in Toronto, with U.S. headquarters in Philadelphia. For more information, please visit www.triversity.com.

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