Tractor Supply taps former Sears exec as CIO
Tractor Supply Company has named Robert Mills SVP and CIO, succeeding James Callison upon his planned retirement. He will also serve on the company’s Executive Committee.
"We are very pleased to welcome Rob to the Tractor Supply team," said president and CEO Greg Sandfort. "Information technology continues to be an important area of both investment and opportunity for our company. Rob’s extensive retail experience in strategic technology planning, e-commerce, and operations leadership qualify him as the ideal fit to lead the continued development of our technology systems and platform."
Previously, Mills served as CIO for Ulta Beauty, and as VP and CIO for the online business unit at Sears Holdings before that. Mills initially joined Sears in 2001 in an information technology capacity, and he served at an executive level from 2005 to 2011. His resume also includes stints at Allstate Insurance, Rockwell International Telecommunications Division and Household Finance Corporation.
Callison will also stay with the company for a period of time to assist with the transition.
"We would like to thank James Callison for his years of service and dedication to Tractor Supply and his assistance through the transition," added Sandfort. "All of us at Tractor Supply congratulate James on his impending retirement."
Eisenwarenmesse sees spread of efficiency
Analog is out, digital is in, and efficiency is here to stay.
That’s according to the organizers of the 2014 International Hardware Fair in Cologne, Germany. The three-day event wrapped up last week, but the trends carry on in the form of “improved efficiency, ergonomics and digitality” across all hardware segments.
Manufacturers of power tools displayed more brushless motors, designed to make the tools increasingly lightweight and powerful, while at the same time more maintenance-free. This trend goes hand in hand with improved battery pack technology in the power tool aisle.
In the lamps sector, LED was at the forefront with impressive credentials: LEDs use up to 80% less energy than conventional light sources, while offering a service life of up to 50,000 hours.
Among the accessory products, lockable padded compartments as well as powerful brakes for the increased stability of workshop trolleys were popular on the trade fair floor, according to organizers. Also, anti-slip retrofit kits that are simply clipped onto the ladder provide extra stability were popular.
In the building technology sector, organizers saw a trend toward mobile communications: Impressive technology was presented ranging from a control app for the plug socket to energy-saving radio technology for blinds and marquees.
Organizers of the 39th International Hardware Fair (Internationale Eisenwarenmesse) in Cologne, Germany, pointed to increased vendor participation in their post show tally of attendance.
From 53 countries, 2,783 suppliers were on hand at the Koelnmesse trade fair grounds.
"We are delighted that we were able to record a 4.5% increase in the number of exhibitors compared with the previous event. Furthermore, the number of trade visitors remained stable, and the international nature of the fair has further increased," said Katharina C. Hamma, chief operating officer of Koelnmesse.
Including estimates for the last day, the fair attracted around 50,000 trade visitors from 136 countries, of which around 63% came from abroad. The 2012 event generated 53,500 visitors, from 132 countries, of which 61% came from outside Germany.
Safety Works lures sales with TH3 Legends
In fishing circles, they are royalty — Jimmy Houston, Bill Dance and Roland Martin.
Known collectively as “TH3 Legends,” the trio is involved in a successful licensing deal with Safety Works in the hand protection area.
During the recent Orgill Spring Dealer Market in Orlando, Houston himself appeared at the Safety Works booth to promote the gloves, take pictures and, of course, swap fishing stories.
The Safety Works licensing deal with TH3 Legends is about a year old, and building momentum said John Shields, VP of business development for the Wexford, Pa.-based company. “It’s been really strong for us,” Shields said.
The TH3 Legends have accumulated more than 100 years of combined TV show exposure, with long-running programs on NBC Sports.
The TH3 Legends line includes waterproof cold weather gloves, fish grip gloves and camouflage gloves with LED lights.