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Press Release

Columbus Consulting Parternship with Profitmind

Industry Veterans Partner to Introduce the First Artificial Intelligence Retail Analyst Designed to Identify Profit and Incremental Working Capital.

Columbus Ohio: Leading retail industry consulting firm, Columbus Consulting International, announces a strategic partnership with innovative AI solution platform design company, Netail, to expand retailers’ accessibility and onboarding of a new proprietary analytics tool-Profitmind.

Proftmind is a fast, transparent, intuitive solution that accesses business data, industry data and competitive data to process, identify and prioritize profit driving opportunities for incremental sales and capital. The tool was designed by Google pioneer Andrew Ng and former retailer turned AI expert, Dr. Mark Chrystal.

According to Chrystal, “today’s market demands the ability for retailers to achieve a new level of transparency in their analytics that makes it easier for decision-makers to understand what is going on, gives more confidence in the decisions made, and promotes faster execution. Profitmind is an easy-to-use AI-powered platform that provides actionable insights and recommendations that can immediately affect your bottom line.”

Industry studies revealed that 83% of retailers who routinely use AI are more profitable than those who don’t and that only 25% of retailers are currently using AI solutions. In turn, of the profits achieved among users, 72% comes from optimizing pricing models, inventory levels and assortment.

According to Columbus Consulting CEO, Jon Beck, “Retailers want fast results.  They want KPI improvements.  They want it easier for their people.  New technologies, like ProfitMind, fit this profile.  Our consulting team, composed of retail practitioners, adds value through Change Management, Business Process evolution and overall Business Transformation.”

Profitmind is different from other decision-making tools. The solution, developed by retailers, incorporates an interactive chatbot that serves as an AI analyst for the business, freeing up the time of the team to focus on strategies and execution. Inquiries like which items to markdown with minimal impact to profit would take nearly a full day of manual analysis, resulting in slow decision making and sluggish adoption. With Profitmind, the inquiry in regular language generates a prioritized list of actions for consideration within seconds, not hours—providing real time access to business and competitive insights. This is why 85% of retailers who demo Profitmind’s capabilities become customers.    

For a complimentary demo of the solution, contact: WWW.COLUMBUSCONSULTING.COM/CONTACT-US

Dr. Mark Chrystal is currently the CEO of Netail, Inc., a retail focused AI startup. Over a 23-year retail career Dr. Chrystal led most functions of a retailer, including: IT, Supply Chain, e-Commerce, Marketing, Loyalty, Planning, Inventory Management, Analytics and FP&A. Dr. Chrystal’s prior roles include: Chief Analytics Officer of rue21, Co-Founder of MachineCore, Inc., Chief Supply Chain Officer of David’s Bridal, SVP eCommerce, Planning and Allocation of rue21, and similar executive roles at American Eagle Outfitters, Disney Store and Victoria’s Secret.

Dr. Andrew Ng is a globally recognized leader in AI (Artificial Intelligence). He is Founder of DEEPLEARNING.AI, Founder & CEO of LANDING AI, General Partner at AI FUND, Chairman and Co-Founder of COURSERA and an Adjunct Professor at Stanford University’s Computer Science Department. Dr. Ng has authored or co-authored over 200 research papers in machine learning, robotics and related fields. In 2013, he was named to the Time 100 list of the most influential persons in the world.

JON BECK is the CEO of Columbus Consulting. Jon is a retail specialist with over 25 years of experience working with retail, wholesale and manufacturing companies focused on improving corporate performance through better planning, execution and analysis. A highly motivated business consultant with broad global experience. Jon has successfully designed and implemented solutions for nearly 100 clients, spanning apparel, footwear and hard lines.


Netail, Inc. is a leading provider of innovative retail solutions, dedicated to helping retailers thrive in a dynamic marketplace. Our breakthrough AI technology makes web-scale external data actionable and our advanced optimization powers key decisions across assortment, pricing and customer engagement. We leverage a unique ‘Human in the loop’ approach that trains our AI to use decades of experience gained by current Merchants and Category Managers. Netail’s world-class User Experience is designed by Merchants and our easy to deploy software ensures rapid time-to-value and ROI. Learn more at WWW.PROFITMIND.COM


Columbus Consulting delivers solutions that drive true value and have been transforming the retail and CPG industries for over two decades. We are a retail consulting company of industry experts. Our approach is simple, if you do it, we do it. We are more than consultants; we are experienced practitioners who actually sat in our clients’ seats. We understand the challenges, know what questions to ask and deliver the right solutions. Columbus offers a unique, consumer-centric approach with an end-to-end perspective that bridges functional & organization silos from strategy to execution. Our specialties include: unified commerce, merchandising & category management, planning & inventory management, sourcing & supply chain, data & analytics, accounting, finance & operations, people & organization and information technology. Let us know how we can help you. To learn more, visit COLUMBUSCONSULTING.COM

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“We are in a very different era in respect to the speed in which retail moves, and we must have the ability to have the data and intelligence to make quicker decisions for the merchandising team. We partnered to bring in their expertise, and because they move at the speed our business needs.”

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