Bear Creek Handles Holiday Rush with Sourcing, Distribution and Productivity Software

Waukesha, WI - RedPrairie Corporation, a leader in global supply chain technology solutions, today announced that Bear Creek Corporation, the parent of popular direct to consumer merchandisers Harry and David and Jackson & Perkins, has improved inventory accuracy to 99.97 percent and improved customer service at Bear Creek's Hebron, Ohio distribution center as a result of the September 2, 2003 rollout of RedPrairie's warehouse management and productivity management solutions.

In a second phase of the implementation, Bear Creek will use RedPrairie's new sourcing module, DLx® SourceRight, to source orders from its distribution facilities in Hebron, Ohio and Medford, Oregon, as well as from the three third party logistics providers (3PLs) it employs for the holiday rush. This will improve customer service by reducing shortages and substitutions while also lowering distribution costs.

Steve Dow, Sr. Vice President, Eastern Distribution for Bear Creek says, "We ship approximately 2 million packages in December alone, and our business continues to grow. We had outstripped our ability to support this growth with our paper-based batch inventory system."

The paper-based inventory system required significant clerical input, resulting in Bear Creek's view of inventory being 4-6 hours behind. The new system will provide real-time vision of inventory to facilitate more timely decisions on allocation and sourcing.

"We were doing a good job controlling our inventory with the paper-based system," adds Dow. "But inventory accuracy was only about 60 percent and we couldn't support more growth. Now our accuracy is 99.97 percent."

Bear Creek researched six vendors before selecting RedPrairie for their comprehensive suite of products. "RedPrairie's products were further along than the competition's," noted Dow. "And their strategic growth matched Bear Creek's plans. It was easy to establish the ROI was there."

Bear Creek's objectives for the new solution were to increase inventory accuracy into the high 90s to eliminate shortages, improve customer service by reducing product substitutions, and improve their unit cost of labor. This latter objective is being met with RedPrairie's advanced Productivity Management solution, which is helping Bear Creek to plan and manage labor usage in the distribution center.

"The installation was flawless and invisible to our customers," says Dow. "We are already hitting our unit cost of labor and throughput objectives. We look forward to expanding this into an enterprise fulfillment approach through DLx SourceRight."

Comments John Jazwiec, RedPrairie Company Leader, "We have a total focus on helping our customers achieve measurable logistics results with our solutions. We find that when customers share this dedication to achieving results, as Bear Creek does, implementations are invariably smooth and successful. We congratulate the Bear Creek team on having a strong impact on their corporate growth and customer service goals. We are proud to have assisted them in their significant achievements."

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