Monday, December 17, 2007

IFS takes responsibility for entire supply chain for retailers

IFS and Centric are launching a new concept, ‘end2end retail’, for the retail industry. The concept will enable retailers to take complete control of every part of their supply chain with an integrated IT solution from IFS. The solution will improve the quality of information available to customers and thereby reduce the risk of errors in planning and executing logistics processes.

Increased consumption in Scandinavia has enabled rapid and large-scale expansion in the retail industry, where success depends on having the agility and planning tools to react quickly to changes in the market, customer demands and seasonal variations. Among other requirements, the industry needs to optimize supply chains to shorten lead times and handle greater volumes more effectively. This has led to the need for IT solutions that integrate traditional supply chain management in the business applications (ERP) with point of sale (POS) and warehouse management (WMS) systems.

To understand the critical issues affecting customers, IFS and Centric conducted deep interviews with a number of key players in the industry. The feedback from customers and partners helped determine the type of functionality that would be included in the new end2end retail concept.

Among other things, end2end retail includes functionality for distribution and assortment planning to provide customers with more efficient goods flow, while ensuring that the right product is in the right store at the right time. The concept also offers functionality for detailed sales forecasting based on seasonality, trends, campaigns, and previous sales data. Thus, the solution enables retailers to predict trends and ensure to a greater extent that their stocks contain the products the customers want—all the way down to store level. Also included are corporate solutions that optimize purchasing, logistics and warehouse management for a larger part of the value chain. Because it gives easy access to key figures at corporate, store, and article level, end2end retail is an efficient decision-making tool.

With this new concept, IFS is investing strongly in winning new market share in Scandinavia.
“Competition in the market is intense, but we offer our customers a unique concept based on many years experience and competence in the industry. Forty percent of our revenue in Scandinavia comes from logistics-intensive businesses. Collaboration with partners such as Centric further strengthens our position. Therefore, we expect to substantially increase our market share here,” said Glenn Arnesen, managing director for IFS Scandinavia.

In addition to offering the end2end retail concept, IFS and Centric have set up a Scandinavian center of excellence to strengthen and develop the solution—in collaboration with customers of both companies. Furthermore, IFS and Centric have developed a common program for implementation and support. Centric has a large customer base within warehouse management, logistics and point of sales systems. The company enjoys an excellent reputation and a strong position in the retail industry with customers such as Blocker, Hema, Kingfisher and Ahold..

Retail & Wholesale Distribution is one of IFS’ targeted market segments. IFS offers industry-specific solutions for companies throughout their whole value chain, from planning, procurement, distribution through to store operations. IFS Applications provides support for all critical business processes in the industry, including master data management, automatic replenishment, bonuses and discounts, strategic HR and forecasting. E-Business, Business Intelligence, point-of-sale integrations and hand-held devices are other functions that are supported in the solution.

IFS customers in the retail area include Stadium, Systembolaget, ByggMax, Reporter, Marskramer and Intertoys. IFS customers in the wholesale area include Jenssen, Cloetta Fazer, SMC Pneumatics, Bristan, Hama, Brightpoint, Heaven Hill Distilleries Inc. and Katun Corporation.

About IFS

IFS (OMX STO: IFS), the global enterprise applications company, provides ERP solutions which enable organizations to respond quickly to market changes. The solutions allow resources to be used in a more agile way to achieve better business performance and competitive advantage. Founded in 1983, IFS has 2,600 employees worldwide. With IFS Applications™, now in its seventh generation, IFS has pioneered component-based ERP software. The component architecture provides solutions that are easier to implement, run and upgrade. IFS Applications is available in 54 countries in 22 languages.IFS has over 600,000 users across seven key vertical sectors: aerospace & defense; automotive; manufacturing; process industries; construction, contracting & service management; retail & wholesale distribution and utilities & telecom. IFS Applications provide extended ERP functionality, including CRM, SCM, PLM, CPM, enterprise asset management, and MRO capabilities.

Contact Information

Rachel Hodgson and James Mossman

Phone: +44 (0)207 802 2626

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