Oracle has added six new services to its Retail Cloud, designed to provide its customers with enterprises-grade applications to support their retail activity.
Based on technology gained through Oracle's acquisition of Micros Systems for $5.3bn last year, the new services are aimed at helping retailers keep their IT operations up and running in an efficient manner, while offering insight into retail activity across the business.
Jill Puleri, senior vice president and general manager Oracle Retail, touted the revamped Retail Cloud as means of giving retailers flexibility and agility within their retail operations.
"The new Oracle Retail Cloud Services help eliminate the time and cost constraints that too often hamper retailers' ability to respond to new opportunities for growth," she said.
"Just as important, Oracle Retail Cloud Services allow retailers to focus on their business and work on strategic projects that add value to the business."
The six new services, offered on a subscription basis, are focused on providing real-time insight into operations.
They give users the ability to track available product inventory across various retail channels and distribution centres and insight into online orders and their fulfilment, as well as supporting e-commerce traffic building with search engine optimisation, personalisation and site searching.
Oracle's XBRi also makes up one of the new services and provides retailers with a way to detect and investigate fraud.
The service can be used to isolate suspicious activity right down to an individual or specific cash register, allowing loss prevention investigators to then decide whether action is needed based on the information gleaned from the service.
Oracle appears to be having a busy week, having also announced a database integration tool to ease the process of big data analysis.
Author's view: By building out its Retail Cloud offering, Oracle appears to be making a strong play for the retail sector, across both online and physical stores.
It is likely a push into vertical markets is a bid by Oracle to gain a competitive edge against rivals in the cloud market, such as SAP, IBM and Salesforce.
However, its push into the online retail sector could see it coming up against specialist e-commerce cloud platform provider NetSuite, which has courted prominent retail companies such as clothing brand Fat Face with its cloud services.
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