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Helzberg Diamonds Selects Information Builders For Priceless Reporting Capabilities

Monday, February 14, 2011

Information Builders, an independent leader in business intelligence (BI) solutions, today announced that Helzberg Diamonds has standardized on the WebFOCUS BI platform to provide advanced analysis and reporting capabilities to managers at 230 retail outlets across the U.S. The fine jewelry retailer implemented the BI platform to analyze point-of-sale (POS) and other operational data, respond more quickly to market trends, and boost productivity in nearly every facet of its business. Insight from its new BI environment helps Helzberg provide additional value to customers and partners, while also increasing the size of its average sale.

"We're using our new BI system to analyze data from our network of stores, evaluate the marketplace, detect buying trends, and track promotional effectiveness," said Greg Backhus, director of Data Warehousing and BI for Helzberg Diamonds. "By quickly responding to trends in our customers' behavior, we can more readily understand which products they want and the type of service they need. WebFOCUS makes us more nimble and efficient, so we adapt more quickly than the competition."

Helzberg selected Information Builders' BI software because of its support for interactive dashboards and its report distribution capabilities. WebFOCUS offers tremendous ease of use and extensive connectivity to a broad set of databases and applications including Microsoft SQL Server, JD Edwards Financials, Hyperion Essbase, and Netezza. The platform has enabled Helzberg to create dashboards, scorecards, and an automated environment that streamlines the delivery of numerous daily reports to management covering a variety of functions, including net sales, merchandise reports, and point-of-sale analytics.

Helzberg also used WebFOCUS to enhance its merchandising capabilities with new reporting and metrics, placing more flexibility and control into the hands of store managers. The platform allows key employees to examine product category sales and indentify trends in promotions and other store-specific information, such as individual associate performance, credit sales, and extended care plan usage.

Other dashboards and scorecards provide campaign management statistics to outside vendors, allowing partners to know which products are the highest selling so they can plan accordingly. In addition, Helzberg equipped 30 regional managers with their own WebFOCUS dashboards, providing transparency to all areas of their business. Previously, these managers spent a considerable amount of time loading relational data into Excel spreadsheets, employing different ways of manipulating the data, leading to conflicting results. Now, WebFOCUS loads data directly into the managers' spreadsheets, providing consistency while placing powerful analysis capabilities at their fingertips. Because the IT department maintains the data, every manager receives the same sanctioned information each time, enabling their numbers to roll up consistently.

"Fine jewelry is a highly competitive sector of the retail market, and the depth of information provided by this new BI system helps Helzberg to maintain a competitive edge," said Gerald Cohen, president and CEO at Information Builders. "Timely and accurate reporting is helping the entire company to make better business decisions, solidifying its leadership in the marketplace."

About Helzberg Diamonds

A subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, Inc., Helzberg Diamonds is a fine jewelry retailer with 233 stores across the U.S. The company offers rings, necklaces, earrings, and bracelets, along with diamond and gold jewelry, men's and baby jewelry, colored gems, wedding bands, watches, and various gifts. Helzberg was founded in 1915 and is headquartered in North Kansas City, Missouri.

About Information Builders

Information Builders provides software and services that bring smarter decision-making and streamlined processes to leading organizations in business, government, and education worldwide. The company's software is installed in tens of thousands of locations, servicing millions of users. Its WebFOCUS business intelligence (BI) platform delivers massively scalable information applications, analytics, and customer-facing portals to the new generation of information users to deliver game-changing business results. Its iWay Software integration platform allows enterprises to leverage all of their information resources to streamline internal and business-to-business processes while escalating the overall accessibility and integrity of information regardless of environmental complexity. Headquartered in New York City with 60 offices worldwide, the company employs 1,350 people and has established significant industry partnerships. Visit Information Builders at informationbuilders.com.

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