Oracle reveals next major retail release

Oracle has launched the next version of its retail software suite, which it said delivers on its vision of integrated and insight-driven retailing.

Today's launch of Oracle Retail release 13 has brought together strategic acquisitions that the software giant made some three years ago, when it threw its weight behind a retail-specific offering and established its retail division.

And it builds out the software platform's capabilities in areas that fashion, grocery and hardline retailers are trying to improve margins in the current tough trading and economic climate: merchandising and pricing, wholesale and international expansion, as well as security-related compliance, with the likes of the payment card industry (PCI) standards.

"Delivering Oracle Retail Release 13 marks an important milestone in our ongoing commitment to help transform retail and deliver measurable business value to our customers," said Duncan Angove, Oracle Retail general manager and senior vice president.

The vendor highlighted major enhancements in release 13, which included the addition of regular price optimisation capabilities, completing the full life-cycle price optimisation suite to deliver margin, sales and customer-centric pricing.

New wholesale functionality has been added to allow retailers to capitalise on new and emerging markets through new channel opportunities from selling products to other businesses; while new global performance capabilities include multiple sets of books' functionality, stock ledger and tax-related enhancements to assist retailers looking to expand globally.

A new merchant workspace has also been introduced to provide Oracle Retail Release 13 users with single sign-on, dashboard and reporting capabilities across its platform.

And enhancements to user activity logging and the documenting of secure implementations have been designed to help protect customer information and assist in PCI compliance initiatives.

Dave Boyce, Oracle Retail product strategy vice president added: "Oracle Retail Release 13 provides the means to enable insight-driven retailing and fulfils our promise to deliver the industry's most complete, integrated retail application suite."

George Lawrie, Forrester analyst, said that Oracle's architectural approach allows retailers to retain those legacy applications that provide competitive advantage something that the analyst's research shows strongly is what retailers want to do.

Oracle acquired a number of retail-focused software companies over the last few years, including Retek, ProfitLogic and 360Commerce, as well as vertical vendors with retail customer bases, PeopleSoft, Siebel and JD Edwards.

Miya Knights

A 25-year veteran enterprise technology expert, Miya Knights applies her deep understanding of technology gained through her journalism career to both her role as a consultant and as director at Retail Technology Magazine, which she helped shape over the past 17 years. Miya was educated at Oxford University, earning a master’s degree in English.

Her role as a journalist has seen her write for many of the leading technology publishers in the UK such as ITPro, TechWeekEurope, CIO UK, Computer Weekly, and also a number of national newspapers including The Times, Independent, and Financial Times.