Leading Retailers Join ActiveStore Advisory Board

PHILADELPHIA, Nov. 3, 1997 — Today at FS/Tec ’97, Microsoft Corp. announced it has established an ActiveStore customer advisory council to ensure that its architecture serves the unique needs of the retail industry. ActiveStore is an industrywide consortium dedicated to creating a plug-and-play environment for store-level applications. The board will consist of approximately 25 leading retail corporations, including Brinker International Inc., Coles Meyer Ltd., The Limited Inc., London Drugs Ltd., Marks & Spencer (United Kingdom), McDonald’s Corp., Morissons (United Kingdom), Nike Retail, REI, Starbucks Coffee Co., TriCon Global Restaurants Inc. and Whitbread (United Kingdom).

“Establishing a customer advisory council is an important part of Microsoft’s strategy for ActiveStore,” said Judy Dulcich, retail marketing manager at Microsoft. “From day one, customers have been the driving force behind ActiveStore – their input is critical to the widespread support of this architecture among technology providers. The advisory board also provides a forum for retailers to discuss emerging technologies and share best practices.”

The advisory board will comprise representatives from all major retail segments, including food service, general merchandise, convenience stores, specialty retailers, and grocery and drug chains. The purpose of the advisory board, sponsored by Steve Ballmer, executive vice president of sales and support at Microsoft, is to provide customer input about both the growth and the direction of the ActiveStore initiative. In addition, the advisory board will act as a forum for retailers to provide feedback about the initiative.

“Efficiency is becoming more and more critical in the food-service industry and the integration of information is essential to business success,” said Dan Roddy of Tricon Global Restaurants. “The advisory board will focus on specific areas of the retail industry, and members will act as a common ‘voice’ for their industry segments, sharing their real-world experiences and industry expertise to help guide ActiveStore specifications.”

Next steps for the ActiveStore initiative include an advisory board roundtable luncheon today at noon EST in Salon 1 at the Philadelphia Marriott. The roundtable will offer leading food-service operator and ISV perspectives on directions, developments and benefits of the ActiveStore initiative. The first advisory board meeting will be held in Bellevue, Wash., Dec. 10, 1997.

In addition, Microsoft will hold an ActiveStore European Developers Conference in London on Nov. 13 and 14. The developers conference will offer a detailed status update on the ActiveStore initiative, as well as a comprehensive walk-through of how to develop applications for ActiveStore. For more information on Microsoft retail solutions and ActiveStore, visit http://www.microsoft.com/industry/retail/ .

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