The Italian sportswear brand Northwave has opted for the intelligent sales & operations planning tool REMIRA TIA A3. In the future, the de-mand and supply planning in the development and distribution of high-quality bike and snowboard shoes and clothing will be optimized with the help of the AI software solution in order to further increase the ser-vice level for customers.
Northwave was founded in 1991 and is located near Montebelluna in north-eastern Italy, an area known worldwide for outstanding expertise in the de-velopment of sports shoes and ski/snowboard boots. The family-owned company employs more than 60 people at its headquarters in Italy and at its subsidiary in Germany, which is responsible for sales and customer service in Germany and Austria. The two divisions, Cycling and Snowboard, com-prise a total of approximately 700 stock keeping units (SKU) and around 5000 sizes. The wide range of cycling clothing includes pants, jackets, jer-seys, accessories, and shoes, while in the snowboard sector Northwave offers bindings, shoes, and boards as well as clothing. The brand is currently distributed in over 50 countries around the world.
Excel planning by feel is to be replaced
Suppliers of the company are located both in Europe and in Asia. Northwave gives dealers outside Europe the option of drop-shipping and has a central distribution center in the company to serve all European markets. Previously, demand planning at Northwave was done manually in Excel using historical data, forecasts, and orders. Due to the large amount of information and the increasing complexity of all calculations and the growing business itself, planning with an extensive Excel file reached its limits. "We have a complex business consisting of different product lines, pre-orders and re-orders, sea-sonality and never-out-of-stock programs with different distribution methods such as e-commerce, direct sales, export and licensing. With such complexi-ty and considering the rapidly evolving environment, the need arose to fur-ther increase the level of service to our customers," explains Loris Peserico, Supply Chain Planner at Northwave in Italy. Demand and supply planning needed to be improved using software to also optimize inventory manage-ment and minimize depreciation losses.
Using TIA A3 for integrated demand planning
"After careful evaluation of different partners and competitive solutions, we found in TIA A3 both the understanding of our business and the tool that exactly matched our requirements. In addition, the impressive expertise in the fashion sector was another important reason for our decision to choose REMIRA TIA A3," said Loris Peserico. From now on, REMIRA TIA A3 Sales & Operations Planning software will support Northwave in all phases of the product lifecycle with precise forecasting and sales planning. "By increasing planning accuracy with the software, we not only achieve better availability and optimized inventory. The entire way of working with all teams involved will also change positively and strengthen the quality in the process. The software helps us to exploit new potentials, to act even closer to the market and to sustainably inspire our customers," explains Loris Peserico, since TIA A3 integrates the sales side into demand planning so that all available mar-ket information can be used. Particularly in the fashion, sports and footwear sectors, the extrapolation and forecasting processes enhanced by artificial intelligence enable precise sales forecasts - even in the face of seasonal fluctuations or unpredictable market behavior. The S&OP solution is easily connected to Northwave's ERP system. Thus, Northwave has decided on a combination of rolling planning, sales forecasts, replenishment, and size key distribution. "Especially the module for projection is of great importance for Northwave because it facilitates the market launch of new products: Based on the pre-order, a reliable forecast for the entire season can be created just a few days after the sales launch. This allows us to react much faster and, with our new Sales and Operations Planning process, to continuously adapt and develop our company to market conditions. TIA A3 provides all the nec-essary prerequisites for this," concludes Peserico.
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