Byblos applies Avery Dennison RFID tag system to reduce 30 per cent in stock and 65 per cent wait time in cash desks and inventory

Byblos, a book retailer in Portugal, has deployed the RFID technology in its new 4500 square-metre store in Lisbon, Byblos Amoreiras, to track over 350,000 books, games and videos.

The bookstore has set up 40 RFID-enabled kiosks where customers learn about books and print out their sales-floor location, along with 14 RFID point-of-sale (POS) reading stations. It also incorporates RFID security gates that sound an alarm if a tagged product is taken out of the store without being purchased. All the articles are marked with the Avery Dennison tags that provide the consumer information about the product and at the same time track the articles as well being able to carry out the inventory in a simple way.

When a customer selects a book, he can take it to a kiosk equipped with an RFID reader. The kiosk's reader captures its number and a computer screen displays details about the book such as cost, title and author, as well as other titles that might be of interest etc. At the point of sale the customer places a stack of items on the counter, and an RFID reader captures their item tag ID numbers, displaying them on a screen for the customer as well as the store clerk, who then rings up the sale. 

The Byblos vision is to create the best possible experience to the visiting customer. The RFID solution deployed in BYBLOS by Creativesystems and Avery Dennison guarantees a unique book purchasing experience thanks to the easy access of its location, the possibility of multimedia lookup at the points of information giving complete, fast and accurate information as well as an entirely automatic means of making the payment explains Rui Gaspar, Byblos Chief Operation Officer.

This system, described by the company itself as the biggest deployed to date in non-textile retail, allows the user to mark more than 350,000 articles with Avery Dennison EPC UHF Gen2 passive RFID labels in the storeroom and at the point of sale. The smart label was developed by Avery Dennison according to Creativesystems instructions for Byblos and is especially small so as to suit the products needs. Thus, measuring 2.5 by 7.6 centimetres, the label was custom-made to be small enough to fit properly on all the items of the Portuguese bookstore.

The first challenge we faced in this project was the development of a small RFID label so that it could be used with any article in Byblos, and that it would stick with an ultra-removable adhesive that would not damage the article when peeled off. Our team of engineers not only developed an optimum solution size-wise, but also obtained an exceptional read reliability ratio, concretely 98% - explains Paulo Castro, Branch Manager of Avery Dennison in Portugal.  

Creativesystems RFID system, which uses TrueVUE technology to track articles, compares the products sold with the articles the clients are taking when they leave the store through Aliens RFID portal, as it captures the EPC code (Electronic Product Code) of the clients articles. If the ID number is not registered as sold, the portals reader sets off an alarm. Likewise, it allows the stores employees and managers, as well as its consumers, to use the data provided by the RFID chip inserted in Avery Dennisons RFID tag for a great variety of other uses, such as locating books or other products in the case of customers, or inventory management when used by employees. 

When books or other items arrive at Byblos, employees use five Creativesystems check-in stations equipped with bar-code scanners and five Avery Dennison Monarch 9855 RFID UHF printer-encoders. They first scan the International Standard Book Number (ISBN), printed in bar-code form on a book's back cover. The ISBN is linked to the item's title, author and description in the store's ERP system. The item is then assigned an Electronic Product Code (EPC) number, using TrueVUE EPC commissioning software, and the employee prints and encodes an Avery Dennison RFID label containing an Alien Technology Squiggle EPC Gen 2 passive UHF inlay.

As all the articles in the bookstore are identified with Avery Dennison smart labels, inventory management becomes a much simpler task for Byblos employees and allows them to carry out twice-daily inventory checks. This task is carried out by simply passing a mobile RFID reader in front of the shelves where the products are located (which have been previously labelled with RFID tags that include unitary EPC codes). This way the employees know exactly where each book is located in the bookstore, reducing errors and increasing inventory rotation.

Gaspar expresses his satisfaction regarding the project RFID technology allows us to manage the business in a fantastic way, from receipt, labelling, storing, replacement and promotions, guaranteeing that we always know where the books have been and where they are at all times. With the RFID solution deployed in Byblos by Creativesystems and Avery Dennison we have been able to reduce the stock by 30% and decrease waiting times at the cash desk and inventory by 65%, achieving a reliability of more than 98%.

Byblos joins an increasing list of retailers worldwide that have already become aware of the benefits this technology provides, both at internal processing level and to offer its customers a better purchasing experience. We are proud that they have chosen Avery Dennisons solutions to do this. declares Castro.

In view of the excellent results Byblos is obtaining, the Portuguese bookstore plans to open 4 more stores in 2008, both in Portugal and in Spain, and another five more in 2009, all equipped with RFID technology.


About Avery Dennison

Avery Dennison is a global leader in pressure-sensitive labeling materials, retail tag, ticketing and branding systems and office products. Based in Pasadena, Calif., Avery Dennison is a FORTUNE 500 Company with 2007 sales of $6.3 billion. Avery Dennison employs more than 30,000 individuals in 60 countries who develop, manufacture and market a wide range of products for both consumer and industrial markets. Products offered by Avery Dennison include: Fasson brand self-adhesive materials; Avery Dennison brand products for the retail and apparel industries; Avery brand office products and graphics imaging media; specialty tapes, peel-and-stick postage stamps, and labels for a wide variety of automotive, industrial and durable goods applications.

About Byblos

Byblos opened its first Smart bookstore in December 2007. The concept is much more than a simple bookstore, allowing its visitors to locate any book in the store (whether it is on a shelf, a table or any other place in the store). The RFID antennae at the point of sale allow a quick and efficient payment as several articles can be read simultaneously, even if they are piled. RFID implementation creates a unique experience and an exceptional customer service.

Byblos was founded by a Portuguese editor, leader in fiction and non-fiction topics. The company is already leading this retail industry in Portugal and its expansion plans include opening four new big stores in 2008 and another five in 2009.

About Creativesystems

With a customer focused organization, Creativesystems is a integrated solution provider, in the field of smart information acquisition and management, operating in Portugal and Spain. It has a broad knowledge and experience in information technology coupled with operations management and centered on simple, scalable and competitive customized solutions supported by expert consultancy in process optimization and efficiency. Pioneer in the application of RFID in a series of industrial, logistics, retail and services applications, Creativesystems withholds a vast experience in this technology. The developed solutions privilege simplicity and scalability, integrating beyond RFID innumerable other automatic identification state of the art technologies, such as portable data terminals and barcode systems, amongst others. Creativesytems represents RFID equipments and solutions from Alien Technology, Avery Dennison, Printronix, Tagsys and Ekahau amongst others.

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