In 1902, the Chamber of Commerce determined that Retailers' needs were different from most businesses. Thus, the Retail Merchants Association was created in 1903.
The issues that were addressed by the new association were timeless in nature. They included networking opportunities, transportation, advertising, licensing, taxes, holiday closings, etc.
During the early years of the association, the extension of credit by retailers was a crucial part of day-to-day business. Obviously, with the creation of the Retail Merchants Association (RMA) in 1903, RMA was in the right place at the right time to cater to the credit reporting needs of its members. In 1906, the purchase of the Norfolk Bureau of Credit was the ideal fit for the organization. Throughout the years, RMA focused reporting initiatives. Automation and other peripheral services (mortgage credit reporting and recovery services) became major revenue generators.
Today, technology, automation, and national mergers have supplanted the need for a local credit bureau and its peripheral services. Through initiatives of the board and leadership of its current President/CEO, Retail Alliance® is in the position to begin the transformation necessary for it "to become the premier organization serving the interest of local retailers in the Greater Hampton Roads area."
Our current structure reflects two critical retail needs: Business Services and Retail Services.
Business Services is comprised of Equifax Sales Agents.
Retail Service is the association arm of Retail Alliance®.
The goals and strategies employed during the last five years will serve as a solid foundation for the coming years as the genesis of Retail Alliance® continues!
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