Walmart (NYSE:WMT) is the key customer for many companies, and a large number of them have established offices in Northwest Arkansas—an estimated 1,500 at last count. Tyco Retail Solutions took the branch office concept one step further this week and opened a 5,000 sq. ft. Retail Experience Center for Walmart in Bentonville.
The center is one of 14 globally and the third in the U.S. It is the only one built exclusively for a single Tyco client.
The Retail Experience Center features a simulated retail environment that allows Walmart executives from around the world an opportunity to access and engage with Tyco's safety, security and store performance solutions. These solutions include radio frequency identification-based traffic and inventory intelligence; electronic article surveillance; source tagging; video surveillance; fire suppression; fire detection; and intrusion detection.
The center also includes a meeting space and offices for staff. During the grand opening Tuesday, more than 30 Walmart representatives toured the center, participating in solution demonstrations and engaging in focused discussions, said Eric White, Tyco national account manager for Walmart U.S.
"Meaningful connection with customers is critical to understand their needs and challenges so we can find the right solutions to help them grow," White told FierceRetailIT. "Walmart has been a strategic retail customer for many years, and this investment reflects our continued commitment to Walmart and the Bentonville community."
The space houses offices for Tyco's local Bentonville employees and is used to manage its day-to-day operations in support of Walmart. The showroom will give Walmart representatives access to "world-class" resources and capabilities that are aligned with its growing global footprint. "The new center also provides the Walmart team a unique opportunity to experience our innovative solutions in a personalized, high-impact, interactive environment. This one-to-one engagement helps drive breakthrough technology tailored to their needs," White said.
"Adding talent to our local Walmart U.S. team will help us continually improve service and support to Walmart. And, we hope that moving within close proximity to Walmart's home office will facilitate frequent open and productive dialogue with the Walmart organization—fueling innovation and speeding delivery of new offerings," he said.
Tyco's Retail Experience Centers offer the following services: tailored briefings; customized technology demonstrations; subject matter experts; state-of-the-art audio and video systems; and full-service catering. Additional services in select locations include technology training, engineering and development, and source tagging certification
"Connecting with our retail customers is fundamental to ensuring we are solving their problems and helping grow their business," White said. "By aligning our solutions with their needs, we can continually evolve our offerings to help drive greater business value in a constantly changing retail environment."
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