JAY — A Texas-based customer analytics company told about 25 people from Farmington, Jay, Livermore Falls and Wilton on Wednesday night what it could do to help them attract retailers to the area.

The presentation was the result of the four towns’ managers and some selectmen, along with Alison Hagerstrom, executive director of Greater Franklin Development Council, meeting with representatives of Buxton Co. and another company that offers a retail service over the past year.

Town officials and Hagerstrom have been working to identify a potential retail strategy, which would cost $50,000 a  year and be split by all four towns, if all agree to sign on.

Dennis Maher, director of sales for the Fort Worth, Texas-based company, gave people gathered at the Jay-Niles Memorial Library on Wednesday an overview of what the company does.

Buxton Co. specializes in retail recruitment and how to strengthen and maintain businesses. It has about 3,500 clients and over 100 employees.

The company uses more than 250 data analytics to reveal who the customers are, where more potential customers are, what products they use, where they shop and the value of each customer. It also identifies where the gaps are in the retail business and can match a business to a community.

Maher said one in four jobs support retail in Maine and there are over 204,131 retail jobs in the state.

Retail contributes $10.5 billion to the state’s economy, according to company information.

Retail is booming, he said. Small business and entrepreneurs are also a significant economic engine, Maher said.

The company has worked with more than 3,000 retailers to help them understand who there No. 1 customers are and where best to open a store, he said. They include Marriott, Kellogg’s, Applebee’s, Wal-Mmart and Bed, Bath and Beyond.

A retail company looks at nine to 10 locations before it decides where to put a store, Maher said. Buxton has matched some companies to Maine towns, including helping attract a large call center to Caribou.

Demographics only tell a piece of the story and that is where consumer analytics come into play, he said. The company has a platform called Scout that puts all the information needed for them to work with at their fingertips.

“Nobody knows your town better than you,” Maher said. “Nobody knows retail like we do.”

Buxton would provide 100 percent support to the group in those retail endeavors.

To attract corporations and businesses, there have to be amenities to go with it, Maher said, including places to shop and dine.

The next step is for the towns to decide if they want to work with Buxton. Farmington, Livermore Falls and Wilton have tax-increment financing funds to use if town officials agree to participate. Jay would have to take a funding request to voters at town meeting in April.

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