Monday 24 June 2019

Retail Excellence's Fitzsimons to head new consultancy


David Fitzsimons, who founded Retail Excellence Ireland, is to step down for new group role
David Fitzsimons, who founded Retail Excellence Ireland, is to step down for new group role
Samantha McCaughren

Samantha McCaughren

Representative group Retail Excellence Ireland (REI) is re-organising its operations in a move which will see founder David Fitzsimons step down as chief executive. Former senator and deputy CEO Lorraine Higgins will take over the role.

The body, which was founded in 1995, has expanded to include a number of other businesses and Fitzsimons will become group CEO. Fitzsimons is also setting up a consultancy business, Retail Excellence Insights, which will be owned jointly by him and REI. It will provide advice to individual retailers on a commercial basis.

Originally linked to the country's Chambers of Commerce and set up to support shop owners and promote excellence in retail, REI has recently spun out some commercial operations. The main one of these is gift card company, FromMe2You, which has sold cards with a face value of over €15m since launching in late 2015.

Fitzsimons, who owns 15pc of that company, said that there had been a number of approaches for this business. Retail members invested around €2m in the gift card business in both equity and money for marketing.

This business has recently developed corporate staff recognition software which has been adopted by a number of large companies. "People retention is a huge issue across the world," he said. "We have about 5,000 employees on it and our biggest client is Paypal.

"We are talking to hundreds of companies and there is a sort of waiting list for boarding people on to it."

REI is hosting the Global Retail Council mid-year meeting in Dublin this May which will be attended by executives from over 30 countries. "We see a huge opportunity to roll out the gift card software globally through that network," said Fitzsimons. Another business which has been developed from REI is Pharma Medicine Insights which provides pharma companies with anonymous data on patient patterns for taking medicine.

A key issue for patients and pharma companies is 'non-adherence' of prescribed medicine and this company aims to tackle this problem.

Sunday Indo Business

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