Introducing the 2017 Winners

Thanks to our customers and partners that submitted their projects for the 2017 Innovation Awards. We are pleased to announce this year’s winners!

2017 Innovation Award Winners

This year, the Vertex Innovation Awards recognize six companies that have leveraged software and services from Vertex to solve complex business challenges: AmeriGas; Duracell; Espresso Services; L.L. Bean; Microsoft; and Northern Tool + Equipment.

Read each company's story to learn how our 2017 Innovation Award winners implemented a leading-edge approach to tax management with Vertex solutions. Then, attend this year's Exchange for a chance to vote on which Innovation Award winner is the most innovative and inspiring! Voting will take place at Exchange beginning Sunday, October 22 - with the "People's Choice" winner announced Tuesday evening.

New this year, we are recognizing two past Innovation Award winners with the Vertex North Star Award. These past winners have continued to innovate by using Vertex software to create additional benefits for other tax types or have embarked on a new project using the technology to create a positive impact on the bottom line. In doing so, they have enabled tax to make a more strategic contribution to corporate performance. We’re excited to acknowledge these two forward-thinking companies: Starbucks Coffee Company and Weatherford.


Tax solutions that provide rapid time-to-value and scale


Leading the charge and staying ahead of new VAT compliance requirements

Espresso Services

A double shot of confidence—simplifying and automating tax management


Business transformation and better bottom line impact, while improving customer experience


Enabling digital services on a global scale

Northern Tool + Equipment

Tax tools for expanding into new markets and mitigating the risks of business expansion

North Star Award Winner Starbucks Coffee Company

Blending data and innovation to transform indirect tax management

North Star Award Winner Weatherford

Drilling into a simplification of business assets

2016 People's Choice Awards Winner

Many nominees. Six finalists. One company voted as the “People’s Choice.”

Conference attendees awarded Best Buy Co., Inc. the People's Choice Award for innovation and inspiration for their approach to tax management using Vertex solutions.

Best Buy Co., Inc.

Tax solutions that ‘check out’ for consumer electronics retailer

Winner for use of Vertex Indirect Tax O Series

Best Buy is a Fortune 100 multinational consumer electronics retailer focused on providing expert service at unbeatable prices. The retailer’s focus on innovative offerings to meet and anticipate customer needs for blending technology, service and content produces tax challenges. Best Buy attacked these challenges head on with a holistic and agile tax solution.

Innovation at Work

As Best Buy executes its strategic growth agenda, it has faced interesting tax challenges: When a customer purchases a mix of products and services, how could Best Buy associate related items and alter a tax calculation based on that grouping—while maintaining individual products’ tax characteristics when those products are sold alone? With the need for numerous beyond-the-basics tax attributes, how could the retailer orchestrate the collection and application of that data without compromising cross-channel efficiency and scalability? And, in the face of dozens of procurement channels—each with unique business processes—how could it automate governance and error resolution?

Collaborating with Vertex, Best Buy’s Tax team identified and implemented solutions that address those and related challenges. The company’s Solution Master is a custom cart analysis tool that monitors brick-and-mortar transactions to identify and resolve complex tax relationships. The solution analyzes multi-item product relationships and determines how they impact tax determination. With this configurability, Best Buy can continually create new rules that trigger a live-call to Vertex.

Best Buy also implemented the Tax Integration Service as a “hub” for compiling all critical inputs required for accurate tax determination across Best Buy’s sales channels. It simplifies management and maintenance of all information flowing into Vertex via a single control point while streamlining projects and decreasing the cost for future platform enhancements. Finally, Best Buy implemented Vertex Tax Links Integration with Oracle—a use tax solution focused on creating tax governance opportunities complemented by a highly configurable, scalable and maintainable solution.

In Their Words

“The Vertex solutions have minimized Best Buy’s tax liabilities, reduced future IT integration costs, provided a single integration point to Best Buy’s tax service and enabled Tax to react quickly to the company’s strategic growth offerings. Most importantly, these solutions empowered Tax to better support the business in its mission to grow revenue and enhance the customer experience.” –Jessica Nowlin, Senior Director, Indirect Tax