Dan Raftery

President, Raftery Resource Network Inc.

Dan has been a management and research consultant since 1986. He started his first consulting firm, Prime Consulting Group, in 1996 and turned it over to his partner in 2003 when he launched Raftery Resource Network.

R2N is a diverse team of independent professionals from consumer goods production and distribution industries, who solve business problems for clients in any segment of the supply chain. R2N functions as change agent for innovative solutions tailored to the individual client .

Dan has authored over three-dozen reports on a variety of leading-edge subjects for food, drug and housewares industry associations. For individual companies, he and his network team deliver custom assignments for manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers and service providers to the consumer goods industry. Dan is a regular columnist and featured writer for Advantage magazine.

Dan’s history in the food industry began in the mid-sixties in supermarket retailing. In 1985, Dan moved to Willard Bishop Consulting, Ltd., where he contributed to industry initiatives such as Efficient Consumer Response, Category Management, and Frequency Marketing. At Prime, Dan consulted to several key industry committees including those on invoice accuracy, pallet costs, and unsaleables. He has been the principal consultant on several industry reports in these areas and others, such as the NACDS/American Greetings Research Council and the FMI/GMA Case Pack Optimization Work Group. Dan regularly contributes to industry conferences and facilitates executive share groups and cross-functional action teams inside client organizations.

Dan can be reached by phone at 847-838-1177 or by email at [email protected]

  • Posted on: 09/23/2016

    Are smartphones changing how Americans shop from home?

    As they have become smarter and a little bigger, smartphones have become the device of choice for the technologically-unchallenged. Smartphones are replacing more than tablets and PCs. To name a few, they are replacing wrist watches, calculators, land-line phones, game consoles, TVs and social interaction. What we are seeing is close to addictive behavior. How can they not replace everything when they are habitually held in your face day and night? So, from a pragmatic view, anyone wanting to participate in digital commerce better look good and function correctly on smartphones.
  • Posted on: 09/21/2016

    Is consumer demand really that unpredictable?

    Certainly the options available from the omnichannel environment make it more difficult to predict demand at any one point of retail. That's why suppliers are drawn to Big Data. However for established products, retailers should be close enough 90 to 95 percent of the time. That means new products (which could arguably be most SKUs in the fashion world) are the wildcards. Some manufacturers use staged release or even crowdfunding feedback to help predict broader demand. And they still get it wrong sometimes. But if you're wrong on the short side you can react, and so what? If you are wrong on the long side, well that's a problem.
  • Posted on: 09/20/2016

    Zappos and Meijer among retailers touting their corporate values

    These are two unique and forward-thinking retailers. Both approaches have a common element. They each produce a physical presence. In a society increasingly drawn to the virtual world, these seem like investments that should have some long-term return, especially the Meijer museum. The big differences are the multi-market exposure and local involvement of the Zappos murals program. Hopefully graffiti "artists" will not feel left out and will refrain from adding their contribution.
  • Posted on: 09/19/2016

    Is digital defining the shopping experience?

    I'm wondering if the Deloitte study differentiates by type of retailer, or better yet, by product category. Seems like most attention is on soft goods and electronics when worrying about how retailers can capitalize on digital shopping habits, rather than getting left behind.Maybe that's a good way to make sense out of the changes in the path to purchase. In other words, retailers should think about focussing attention and digital participation budget on the products that shoppers increasingly buy or at least research online, The corollary: improve the in-store experience for the other products.
  • Posted on: 07/27/2016

    Sears Holdings says Kmart is being transformed, not closing doors

    Pretty amazing that Kmart just heard about ECR.
  • Posted on: 07/27/2016

    Will meal kit delivery services move beyond niche status?

    Pretty hard to be optimistic about a business model that delivers convenience over price in these times where even well-off consumers have been conditioned to look for the lowest price. But in some metros, maybe this "Meals on Wheels" for the skateboard set will find a niche.
  • Posted on: 07/25/2016

    7-Eleven makes history with consumer drone delivery

    Still skeptical here. Not sure the business model has been thought through. Definitely a publicity stunt, but one that could be easily out-gunned tomorrow. Good to see progress in the FAA rules department, which of course will also not last should a drone cause an aircraft incident. Yup, skeptical.
  • Posted on: 06/30/2016

    Retailers stand out on Fortune’s ‘100 Best Workplaces for Millennials’ list

    Fortune has created a wonderful performance benchmark for company leaders. And since any type of company can make the list, it offers a scorecard for US business of all stripes. Attitude starts at the top, so it's a bit prejudicial to focus on front line manager attitudes solely. Sure they need to implement policy, but they don't set it.
  • Posted on: 06/29/2016

    What does it take to deliver on the promise of customer centricity?

    I'm looking at a 12 inch tall stack of books published a quarter century ago under the joint industry Efficient Consumer Response (ECR) initiative. Kroger is one of the retailers who embraced the total system form the start. Meijer and HEB are two more. ECR was never proposed as a quick fix. Those who embarked on that long journey are still traveling the road to success.
  • Posted on: 06/29/2016

    Walmart promotes and takes heat for ‘Made in USA’ goods

    Good for TINA to keep an eye on this and to pressure companies to advertise truthfully. (Could they please turn their attention to the presidential campaign ads?) But Walmart should not be singled out here. Plenty of suppliers sneak around the concept, much to the chagrin of legitimate claims by companies who really do still manufacture in the US.
  • Posted on: 06/28/2016

    What do celebrity chefs know about food retailing?

    The celebrity chef endorsement and involvement with a grocer is a timely way to address some of the more important segments of the fragmented, no-longer-mass market. Housewares companies proved long ago that these engagements work on several fronts, including design, marketing and sales. Glad to see similar arrangements catching on in food retail. A natural.
  • Posted on: 06/28/2016

    Barnes & Noble to sell beer & wine in new concept stores

    Makes sense to offer things that compliment the Barnes & Noble experience. Having survived the book store channel contraction, this retailer is wisely carving a new niche, built upon and for the loyal customer base they serve. That base is likely to expand.
  • Posted on: 06/01/2016

    Will food save the mall?

    Well, airports finallly figured that out, but they have a captive audience whom the airlines had been starving for years in this country.Foodies might be curious about celebrity chefs, but they can find them already in nicer settings. And food trucks go to where people already are, not vice versa.Last bit of shade on this bright idea -- Hollywood influences fashion trends, which this sounds more like than a food trend.
  • Posted on: 06/01/2016

    SpartanNash hops on the Amazon supply chain bandwagon

    Of course this is a super exciting opportunity for SpartanNash, but George raises a good question about relations with other retailer customers. As has been the case with manufacturers selling to or through Amazon, retail price will be the big issue initially. However, SpartanNash should be a bit invisible here, at least for a while. Manufacturers will hear the gripes.The bigger question is, what will become of their relationship with Amazon after volume ramps up? I see two scenarios -- one where Amazon takes the buying in-house, dropping the wholesale tier; the other where Amazon absorbs SpartanNash. Or maybe this is simply a step toward a robust range of private label?

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