Rakuten workers asked online merchants to falsify prices

The Japan Times Online

Employees of online shopping mall Rakuten Inc. instructed merchants to falsify prices of products in violation of consumer protection laws, according to some of the internet mall's tenants.

Rakuten revealed the price mislabelling last November for special sales honouring the victory by the Rakuten Eagles in the Japan Series, but without discussing whether its own employees had been involved in the illegal act.

Uniqlo set to boost staff status

The Japan Times Online

Fast Retailing Co. plans to turn about 16,000 of the 30,000 part-timers at its domestic Uniqlo casual clothing stores into regional regular employees, company sources said on Wednesday.

The company has begun interviewing candidates for regular employment with the aim of implementing the plan over two to three years, the sources said.

The measure, aimed at giving part-timers stable employment, could save training costs for part-timers and would not necessarily increase overall costs by much, they said.

Westfield creates future ready HR platform with Wipro

Westfield, one of the world’s largest shopping center portfolios with 90 centers in Australia, New Zealand, USA and UK, partnered with Wipro to create a future ready Human Resources (HR) platform.

Wipro EasyU, an offshore upgrade lab and innovation tool, assisted Westfield in comprehensive impact analysis of their application landscape and accelerated the upgrade of custom components.

John Lewis to give all employees bonuses


Far from the astronomical incentives accorded to a select few at Britain's banks, clothes-to-food retailer John Lewis Partnership is paying all of its staff an annual bonus worth 15 percent of their salaries, earning praise for its co-operative structure.


Seven & I welcomes 1,219 recruits in Japan

The Japan Times Online

Seven & I Holdings Co. welcomed 1,219 new employees to its 14 group companies on Thursday, up 39 from a year earlier.

The extra recruits this year reflect expansions in its group companies. The convenience store chain, 7-Eleven Japan Co., plans to open a record 1,600 new outlets through next February.

Panasonic gives China expat employees smog pay

The Sydney Morning Herald Online

Japanese electronics giant Panasonic says it will give employees sent to China a wage premium to compensate for the country's hazardous air pollution, in a possible first for an international company.

The move was part of a wider deal reached in Japan's annual labour talks on Thursday which saw major firms, including Panasonic and Toyota, agree to boost workers' salaries for the first time in years, amid concerns about an economic slowdown after a sales tax rise next month.

Woolworths to create thousands of jobs

The Sydney Morning Herald Online

Supermarket giant Woolworths has promised a jobs bonanza next year in the face of a series of manufacturing closures this year that has seen thousands put out of work, and will open 108 new stores in the 2014 fiscal year to create 6,981 jobs.

The retailer said on Thursday that the new jobs will be Australian wide and include its flagship supermarket stores as well as its other retail brands Dan Murphy's and BWS, Big W and its Masters hardware chain.

Flipkart, India's reply to Amazon, sees USD1b sales

The Malaysian Insider

Flipkart, India's answer to US online giant Amazon, said on Saturday its sales would cross the milestone USD1 billion-mark this year, ahead of schedule, in the country's exploding e-commerce market.

Founded in 2007 by two employees and university friends, has become India's biggest shopping portal hit and has drawn backers such as New-York based venture capitalists Tiger Global Management LLC.

Starbucks to up permanent ranks in Japan

The Japan Times Online

Starbucks Coffee Japan Ltd plans to make all its 800 contract employees permanent workers on April 1 as part of efforts to improve the quality of its services, company officials said on Thursday.

The salaries of the contract workers are expected to increase after their promotion as they will get seasonal bonuses, the officials said.

Taking Stock: Stores still relevant in the new age of scientific retailing

As expected, the National Retail Federation's (NRF) big show in New York City last month was an impressive showcase of innovation for the retail sector. With 27,000 attendees, 200,000 feet of expo space and more than 550 booths, the vast spread of technology offerings from all over the world span the entire range of products and solutions for today's retailers.

However, one trend clearly emerges: in the new age of scientific retailing, the store is still relevant.

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