Pre-ILS Events Serve Up Retailer Support, Appreciation

LAS VEGAS – On the eve of the International Lingerie Show, retailers were treated to the debut of Williams Trading Co.’s new e-learning platform, while others attended Baci Lingerie’s biannual Customer Appreciation Dinner.

Veteran distributor Williams Trading Co. officially launched what it touts as “the industry’s first-ever E-Learning platform,” Williams Trading University, developed specifically for adult retailers.

Scott D., director of sales & marketing for Williams Trading, told XBIZ that Williams Trading University is packed with 200 hours of programming. The content was created based on collaborations between vendors and Erin M., Williams Trading marketing & vendor liaison.

“The whole point of the e-learning platform is to help retailers increase sales,” Scott D. said. “We’ve gotten an overwhelming response from our vendors. They’ve really supported us in the development.”

Williams Trading University is a free E-Learning program available exclusively to existing and new Williams Trading Co. accounts. Co-sponsored with 26 adult manufacturers, online courses are available 24 hours/7 days per week and can be accessed with a simple login account. Each course offers product benefits, features, and a seminar that explains its importance to the customer, their needs and wellbeing.

“E-Learning is a platform commonly used for mainstream corporate retailers like Nike and Lenscrafters,” Scott D. said. “By implementing E-Learning to store owners and their employees, we are confident retailers will see a significant lift in sales because product features and benefits, cross-selling and up-selling techniques are being reinforced.”

Williams Trading University courses are supported by the following vendors: Pipedream, Jimmyjane, System Jo, Sportsheets, SI Novelties, Perfect Fit, Nu Sensuelle, Nasstoys, Lovehoney, Blush, Doc Johnson, Maia Toys, Kheper Games, Shunga, Nature Labs, Classic Erotica, Wet, Topco, Jopen, California Exotic Novelties, Sierra Sage, My Evolved, Joy Division, Tantus, Fun Toys and Cloud Nine.

“For the retailers it’s a no-brainer,” said Robert Pyne Jr., VP of Williams Trading Co. “It doesn’t cost anything and it’s the best way to train retail staff.”

Baci Lingerie once again gathered its U.S. retail customer base for its appreciation dinner party, a biannual event held at Buzio’s Seafood Restaurant inside the Rio Hotel and Casino.

During the event, which also praised the efforts of the Baci and XGEN team, XGEN President Andy Green delivered the event’s speech in which he offered a retrospect of Baci’s evolution since its change of ownership.

“A lot of work has been done over the last two years to reinvent the brand and take it over from a former ownership that wasn’t very hands on,” Green said. “When Frank gets involved with something, he does so very passionately.

“Let’s rewind to November 2012, Frank calls me and says ‘do you want to meet me for breakfast?’ ‘No problem,’ I said, so we go to breakfast and we’re chit-chatting. He says ‘Andy, how would you like to distribute Baci?’ After nearly choking on my bagel, I said ‘OK, no problem.’  So overnight XGEN got 1,500 new SKUs. I think at the time XGEN only had about 1,000 of its own. We got to working on making Baci more manageable – we condensed and repackaged collections. I don’t think everyone understands that since Frank took over Baci, everything has been redone – from the packaging, to the fit and quality, to the languages on the box. I want you all to know that it’s not just me – we have a lot of great people on our team.”

The Baci-XGEN team will be co-operating two booths in a new location at ILS, where the company says it will host the official introduction of the Fetish Collection that’s currently in production with shipping set for the spring.

According to the company, the new releases that were introduced in April are now available ­– including the Dreams hosiery line of 20 styles, the Dreams Vol. 3 collection of costumes, the nearly 50-product strong White Label Seduction and Corsets by Baci.

Baci is supporting retailers with new marketing and merchandising materials as well. The company has new Baci Storybook Presentation Folders – which bundles all of Baci’s supplements and company profile – along with planograms which will be demonstrated within the Baci booth.