FMI Outlines MarkeTechnics 2006 Lineup

WASHINGTON -- MarkeTechnics 2006, to be held Jan. 30 to Feb. 1 in San Diego, will feature the latest technology solutions to many of today's biggest food retail industry challenges, among them rising credit and debit card costs, front end security and loss prevention, data synchronization, and improving shopper satisfaction, according to the Food Marketing Institute, the annual convention's sponsor.

The new technology to be displayed at the event will include computer-generated "smart carts" that speed up shopping trips; interactive kiosks offering product locations, nutrition information, and recipe suggestions; and biometric payment systems permitting point-of-sale payments with just a fingerprint, the trade group said.

"Technology plays a critical role in all aspects of the competitive retail environment -- building customer loyalty and satisfaction, improving efficiency and reducing costs," said Hannaford Bros. Co. s.v.p. and c.i.o. Bill Homa, chair of the MarkeTechnics 2006 planning committee, in a statement. "MarkeTechnics is the one place where retail company decision makers can see real-life applications of new technologies and discover practical and innovative solutions to generate growth and profits."

Headlining the program will be noted forgery, embezzlement, and secure documents expert Frank W. Abagnale, whose story was made famous by the Steven Spielberg movie "Catch Me If You Can". Abagnale will address how technology can both enable and fight against many of today's fast-growing financial crimes. He will also offer advice on what companies can do to lower their risk of becoming victims of such crimes.

Featured speakers will include Dr. Kjell Nordstrom, co-author of "Karaoke Capitalism," who will talk about how to link technology and business aims to the customer experience, and Marianne Jennings, professor of legal and ethical studies at Arizona State University's School of Business, who will discuss ethical pitfalls in the fast-changing technological world.

Additionally, over two dozen educational workshops will cover such subjects as mobile technology, RFID, security, electronic payments, and merchandising. Workshop sessions will be led by industry experts and presented in multiple formats, among them general sessions, workshops, and panels.

Almost 200 companies, including 35 debuting exhibitors, will have booths at the show. Among the product categories represented will be branding, business-to-business commerce, electronic coupons, electronic payment systems, fuel technology, self-scanning systems, and wireless communication. Tours of the exhibits will be led by Tom Nowak, recently retired s.v.p., information systems and c.i.o. of the Golub Corp. and Tom Murphy, president of Peak Tech Consulting and a former Kroger executive.

Two FMI events, the Loss Prevention Conference and the 2006 Retail Electronic Payment Systems Conference, will co-locate with MarketTechnics 2006. The Loss Prevention Conference, to be held Jan. 29 to Feb. 1 at the Doubletree Hotel San Diego Mission Valley, will look at such issues as organized retail theft, data mining, identity theft, food chain defense, and workplace violence. The 2006 Retail Electronic Payment Systems Conference, to be held Jan. 31 to Feb. 2 at the Omni San Diego Hotel, will cover topics including interchange fees, payments trends, card security, and fraud prevention. Attendees of both conferences will receive free admission to MarkeTechnics 2006.

For more information and registration for MarkeTechnics 2006, go to
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