What is the indiCo Collaborative?

  • The indiCo collaborative is an alternative to corporate leasing or self-operation of your campus store that provides you with the lowest-cost course materials and merchandise.
  • The collaborative gives you the best of both worlds and more by combining the operational efficiency, buying power, and strategic guidance promised by chain operators with the flexibility and brand integrity of an institutionally operated university store.

How is indiCo different from a corporate lease operator?

  • We work to keep money in higher education, not take it out.
  • Our collaborative model is based on lowering costs and risks for the institution, not achieving corporate profits for shareholders.
  • Profits are used to cover operational costs and reinvest in services for the collaborative. We aren’t working for corporate shareholders; we’re working for you.
  • We work with you to determine the best solution for your specific needs from a range of validated technology and service options.
  • Your store will reflect your campus, demographics, and geography. We don’t impose a corporate store model or limit the merchandise you can carry.

What are my options? What if I just need help in one area such as course materials?

  • You have two options:
    • A full-service store that covers all critical store operational components:
      • Staff management and training
      • Retail technology
      • Course materials management and sourcing
      • Inventory management
      • Store design
    • A custom store that lets you select just the services you need on an a la carte basis.  

My store is independent. What can indiCo do for me?

  • We can help you address the pain points that could become a trigger for exploring lease
  • These pain points can include dwindling course material sales, outdated technology, decline in financial contribution, need for a remodel or refresh of the store space, staff turnover or vacancies in key roles, and more.

How will you make course materials less expensive?

  • You can opt to use our course materials management technology without committing to a book-sourcing agreement that limits your ability to control pricing and affordability.
  • Comparative sourcing and price negotiation across online marketplaces delivers the lowest costs available on faculty adoptions.
  • Adoption tools let faculty compare editions, format options, and costs before making their course materials decisions.
  • A price comparison tool shows the store’s price against online options in one easy place for students.

How much do indiCo’s services cost?

  • On average our costs are substantially less than corporate leasing.
  • We offer a range of customizable services, each with a different cost based on the services included, and the size and sales volume of the store.

What do you mean by financial transparency?

  • Our Full-Service Store includes a shared revenue (or rebate) structure. Your institution benefits from a clearly stated combination of guaranteed and performance-based financial contributions. Our formula uses the gross, top-line revenue number versus the lease operator standard of delivering a percentage of revenue after subtracting non-commissionable revenue.
  • Management dashboards provide visibility into adoption rates, financial status, affordability measurements, and industry comparisons. Students and faculty enjoy easy access to pricing, content, and format options
  • We’ll meet with you for quarterly face-to-face business reviews to assess your store’s financial performance, and other key performance indicators.

How will current employees at my store be affected if I use indiCo’s services?

  • Our approach is not to fire everyone who works in your store and replace them with corporately trained clerks.
  • We start by assessing the needs of your store and your existing team.  We also look at historical customer traffic patterns, functional requirements, and relevant customer insights and trends to make staffing recommendations for your store.

Do stores have to be a member of NACS to use indiCo services?

  • No.  NACS membership is encouraged, but not a requirement.
  • NACS members benefit from invaluable industry insights, government relations, publications, and educational opportunities that only a trade association can provide.

Can a leased store use indiCo’s services?

  • No, but indiCo can help you transition from a lease management operation.