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  • At a three-day RFID meeting this week in Springdale, Arkansas, Wal-Mart reportedly told its top 100 vendors that the January 2005 deadline – by which time their products being shipped to three distribution centers and 150 stores must be tagged – remains intact.

    By June 2005, three additional distribution centers and another 100 stores will be included in the RFID loop, and by October 2005 another 800 stores will be added to the list.

    Tier two suppliers – made up of another 200 companies, have until January 2006 to meet the tier one companies’ October deadline.

    Wal-Mart also reportedly promised to share movement data with the companies, apparently in the hope that improved information flow will encourage the vendors to meet the established deadlines.

  • One hot rumor coming out of CIES was that Wal-Mart has its corporate eye trained Down Under, looking to acquire a major retailer there.

    Sources tell MNB that John Menzer, CEO of Wal-Mart International, was telling folks at CIES that he has a trip planned for Australia, and is looking at Woolworths (also known as "Woolies") there – which operates . some 1,500 supermarkets, general merchandise, and electronics stores.

KC's View:
Put another retailer on the barbie, mate…