American Standard — SunTrust Park, Atlanta Braves
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American Standard partners with Atlanta Braves

BY HBSDealer Staff

Some the latest bath products from American Standard can be seen at customized, branded restrooms at SunTrust Park, the home ballpark of the Atlanta Braves.

While the park officially opened in March 2017, a three-year partnership between the plumbing brand and the Braves includes official American Standard bathrooms in the 41,084-seat facility.

Located on the main level, these unique women’s and men’s bathrooms include decorative murals that celebrate the American Standard products integrated with popular baseball imagery. The illustrations — which incorporate clever factoids about water use and the ballpark — were created by Midwest artist Adam Turman, whose bold style uniquely blends elements from both storied organizations.

The branded restrooms exclusively feature American Standard toilets, urinals, sinks, faucets and shower heads, which were selected for their innovative technologies that deliver reliable operation with heavy use, while also saving water and energy costs.

“Our goal in this exciting new partnership was to provide a more comfortable experience for the fans while helping the organization to save money through the durable and water-efficient commercial bathroom fixtures and faucets from American Standard,” said Chris Brown, VP of sales for Lixil Americas, the division under which American Standard operates. “Our comprehensive commercial product offerings are built to withstand the high-traffic use they will receive in SunTrust Park for years to come, while providing high-style to this modern sports facility.”

Additionally, restrooms throughout the ballpark — on the general and club levels, plus employee locker rooms — showcase stylish, durable and water-efficient fixtures and faucets, American Standard said.

“We chose American Standard because their plumbing fixtures and faucets are stylish and also meet the performance standards required for commercial restrooms, including sustainability, maximum hygiene and overall user comfort,” said Mike Plant, president and CEO of Braves development.

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Frost King suits up with Armacell

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Armacell and Thermwell Products Co. have announced the formation of a strategic partnership to manufacture and market polyethylene and elastomeric pipe insulation and other consumer products for the retail market.

The companies expressed optimism over the deal based on the combination of Armacell’s manufacturing footprint and expertise along with Thermwell’s sales and marketing capabilities. Together, the two expect a smooth transition of products into the marketplace and for the development of innovative products for the retailer and consumer.

“We are delighted to announce this partnership,” said Keith Norwood, Armacell VP for the Americas. “We firmly believe this leverages the capabilities of what both companies do best and brings a more efficient product delivery system to the consumer. These two world class organizations are coming together for added benefits in the current supply of products and reinforcing Armacell’s unique position as a global leader in energy efficiency.”

“Having the opportunity to partner with an organization like Armacell is very exciting for us,” said David Gerstein, Thermwell Products Co., Inc. (Frost King) President and CEO. “We have many years of experience in marketing and managing retail products and Armacell has a tremendous diversity in its product portfolio. Together, we can streamline our efforts and work together to jointly define and develop new products for both the retailer and consumer. This is a very positive move for both companies and sets the stage for some exciting opportunities.”

Among the benefits of the strategic partnership, the company cited combined shipments, single source of contact, aligned marketing programs and enhanced trade show presentations.

Armacell is known for its engineered foams and flexible foam for equipment insulation. The company operates 25 production plants in 16 countries,

Thermwell Products Co., Inc. has been supplying products to the retail market for more than one hundred years.

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Eye on Retail: Nearly half of online orders to be delivered within two hours by 2028 — delivery
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Eye on Retail: Nearly half of online orders to be delivered within two hours by 2028

BY Deena M. Amato-McCoy

Retailers are rethinking — and speeding up — their logistics operations to create a faster purchasing journey for customers.

To satisfy online consumers that want a faster purchasing experience, 78% of logistics companies expect to provide same-day delivery by 2023. Meanwhile, 40% anticipate two-hour delivery windows by 2028, according to the “Future of Fulfillment Vision study,” from Zebra Technologies.

To better meet the growing expectations of the on-demand economy, 76% of retailers use store inventory to fill online orders, and 86% of companies plan to implement buy online/pick up in store in the next year. Retailers are also investing in retrofitting stores to double as online fulfillment centers, and shrinking selling space to accommodate e-commerce pickups and returns.

In addition, 87% of retailers expect to use crowdsourced delivery, or a network of drivers that can get orders to customers faster, by 2028.

Next-gen supply chains will reflect connected, business-intelligence and automated solutions that will add newfound speed, precision and cost effectiveness to transportation and labor. The most disruptive technologies will be drones (39%), driverless/autonomous vehicles (38%), wearable and mobile technology (37%) and robotics (37%).
In other key findings:

  • Supply chains will also become less error-prone, as 49% of companies will add more radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology, tagging solutions and inventory management platforms in the next few years. The technology heightens inventory accuracy and shopper satisfaction while reducing out of stocks, overstocks and replenishment errors.
  • While 72% of organizations currently utilize barcodes, 55 are still using inefficient, manual pen-and-paper based processes to enable omnichannel logistics. By 2021, handheld mobile computers with barcode scanners will be used by 94% of respondents for omnichannel logistics.
  • Accepting and managing returns also remains a challenge for 87% of respondents, especially as the increase in free and fast product delivery corresponds with an increase in returned merchandise. Seven in 10 surveyed executives agree that more retailers will turn stores into fulfillment centers that accommodate product returns.
  • More than 60% of retailers that currently do not offer free shipping, free returns or same-day delivery plan to do so, while 44% expect to outsource returns management to a third party.

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