Associated Grocers of the South Deploys CipherLab's Portable Data Capture Terminals Across Five States

— October 18, 2006


CipherLab, a leading innovator in Automated Identification and Data Capture (AIDC) for the retail, warehouse and distribution markets, today announced that Associated Grocers of the South is now rolling out the company's CPT-8021 acoustic coupler terminals to the wholesale cooperative's 300 member grocery stores throughout Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Tennessee and the Florida Panhandle. The deployment of the CipherLab units will eliminate the ordering of discontinued items and streamline the entire ordering process for the stores.

"CipherLab has done a good job for us," commented Ron Burke, vice president, information technology for AG South. "We've seen an almost immediate ROI through the simple addition of two- way communication through CipherLab's 8021 terminals. Another big plus: our store managers really like the system."

Headquartered in Birmingham, AL, AG South is one of the oldest wholesale grocery store cooperatives in the U.S. and handles more than 16,000 SKUs, including the widely recognized private label, Shurfine.

Burke explained that the company had been experiencing an estimated loss of over $2 million annually in sales due to the ordering of discontinued items. "When store personnel request discontinued items, it leaves orders unfilled and valuable shelf space empty," he said. "The CipherLab terminals completely eliminate this problem. Additionally, they reduce employee errors, eliminate double orders through a verification system and allow order requests to be transmitted almost immediately, shortening our response time."

"CipherLab's 8021 is a great choice for customers such as AG South that want to upgrade their data capture systems and that may need to take into consideration staff training time and the availability of high-speed Internet connectivity," said Robert Hossary, vice president-Americas for CipherLab. "The 8021 transmits data in five seconds or less over high-speed Internet, whether satellite, DSL or cable. It also has the capability of transmitting acoustically over standard phone lines - perfect for rural areas. This revolutionary feature of the terminal alone makes for a great technology investment for any company and, as AG South experienced, requires very little investment in training. We're pleased to have been selected as the cooperative's partner and look forward to working with it to finalize the rollout."

AG South completed field tests with CipherLab's terminals earlier this year. The rollout is now approximately 20 percent complete, with 50 percent of the AG South stores to have the CipherLab units by the end of 2006. The deployment of the remaining CipherLab terminals will be complete in 2007.

The CPT-8021 and other CipherLab products are now being shown in booth
7513 at the National Association of Convenience Stores' NACS® Show 2006, being held at the Las Vegas Convention Center from October 9-11.

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