Distribution client cases

Columbus customer’s own success stories provide a glimpse into the power that is created when innovative, technology-minded companies partner with an enterprise solution powerful enough to span their enterprise needs today and flexible enough to grow to meet their needs tomorrow.

We’ve helped all kinds of distributors achieve their goals and expand their business. Find out how you can apply what they’ve accomplished to your business.

History and Heraldry: A high speed solution for a high speed business

Client:
History & Heraldry
Industry:
Distribution
Challenge:
Aging systems couldn't keep up with growth
Solution Areas:
Integrates key business processes for greater visilibility and rapid sales order processing
Products:
Microsoft Dynamics AX

Running a successful business requires reliable information from all key areas of operations. History & Heraldry were using an aging Pegasus Opera solution that couldn't keep up with the growth in the business it was supporting. Neither functionality nor the flexibility was up to speed.

"We initially worked with four different ERP suppliers on a detailed scoping phase", says Steve Wright, General Manager at History & Heraldry. "This was a time consuming exercise, but it was obviously an important one as choosing the right partner is key to the overall success of the project."

Easy picking

History & Heraldry's central warehouse at Rotherham is divided into bulk storage, bulk replenishment storage and an extensive pick face. The AX solution provides full location control which was impossible with the previous IT system. The stock management cycle starts when goods are received and moved to their AX-specified pallet locations in the bulk storage division. From then on the goods are moved through two stages of replenishment, with the system providing instructions to supply goods to the pick face. This allows for continuous and shortage-free picking.

New warehouse

History & Heraldry are planning to expand their storage capacity with one more warehouse. This expansion will put the flexibility and adaptability of the new ColumbusDistribition AX solution into play and makes it evident that the IT investment is a strategic move that will help History and Heraldry to seize new business opportunities as they arise.

Perfect fit

The sales order teams, for domestic and international sales, rely on a rapid sales order entry mechanism that will allow lengthy sales order requirements to be captured in an extremely efficient manner. The integrated development environment within AX has allowed the entry dialogue to be modeled to the requirements of the users so there is a perfect fit between the real life work processes and the technology.

Improved service

There are lots of different manufacturing processes within H&H Group. One example is the assembly of gift cards which is handled by home workers. Historically none of these processes had been supported by IT. Today, however, AX is being used to track and manage the transfer of materials to the home workers, the allocation of manufacturing activity and subsequently recording of completed goods being returned to the warehouse. Another area of manufacturing is printing. Leaflets, cards, posters etc. roll off the printing presses in huge quantities. Controlling, managing and scheduling print runs are now done by AX. This provides vastly improved visibility of available materials, finished products and delivery times. The visibility also helps H&H Group to further improve customer service.

"Impressed"

History and Heraldry is a high speed business that relies on consumers being inspired to buy on impulse. This means that they have to be on their toes and be able to respond quickly to market needs and fluctuations. General Manager Steve Wright says of the cooperation with Columbus: "We were particularly impressed by Columbus and the deep level of application and business knowledge their team demonstrated. This – coupled with Columbus' geographical reach which allows them to service each of the countries we operate in – meant that Columbus were the ideal partner for us."

Top of their game

"It is always a pleasure working with market leaders", says Nicola Garrett, Project Manager at Columbus. "Being in that position means that H&H Group are at the top of their game and it demands that we have to be at the top of ours to give them the solution they require. This project is a success because we had the best technology and not least the deepest knowledge, the experience and the skills to implement it in a demanding retail business environment".

About History & Heraldry (H&H Group)

History & Heraldry is an award winning Gift Company with representation in more than 50 international markets. H&H Group produce high quality innovative product ranges at impulse buy prices for a whole range of retail environments and have become the market leader in just 7 years. They are renowned for it's sentiment and personalised products that are offered in coordinated concept ranges, that offer maximum selling in minimum floor space.

Laying the foundation for success

Download
Client:
Goodwins
Industry:
Retail & Distribution
Challenge:
improve customer service, increase visibility of stock, improve transparency of pricing
Solution Areas:
ColumbusRetail solutions
ColumbusRetail customer Goodwins

Goodwins Builders Providers is one of Ireland’s largest suppliers of building and construction materials. Established in 1978, the company has been providing building products, construction and home improvement materials to the Irish market for over thirty years, and is now in its second generation of family ownership.
Goodwins builders’ merchant stores in Lucan and Mulhuddart are in the Greater Dublin area and strategically positioned close to the city’s major road networks. And with its new multi-channel software solution, the company also now boasts a full online order and delivery service.

Traditionally catering for house builders, Goodwins has had to broaden its focus in recent years, as the Irish house building market has been hard hit by the economic downturn. Housing unit builds have plummeted to just 5,000 per annum, from a peak of approximately 90,000 and one major Irish cement producer has reported demand down by 80%.
Consequently, like the rest of the industry, Goodwins is now more dependent on the repair, maintenance and improvement (RMI) sector. It has had to radically streamline its business over the past five years and despite being in the teeth of a very bitter recession, Goodwins took the bold decision to invest in a new multichannel retail system, opting for Microsoft Dynamics AX with the ColumbusWebstore e-commerce solution.
As a result, the builders’ merchant is not just withstanding the downturn, but vastly broadening its reach and improving customer service, all whilst greatly increasing efficiency.

Goodwins carries a wide range of products, from heavy supplies, such as concrete, drainage, locks and steel, to light machinery, timber, hardware, and plumbing supplies. With all product and pricing information now available on the website, and a real-time view of stock, customers cannot only check availability before visiting the merchants, but they can also order online. “We are selling a wider range products, than we did before, some of which were historically very slow moving,” explains Jonathan Goodwin, Managing Director and son of the founder, William Goodwin.
Goodwins had made the decision to replace an aging specialist system with Microsoft Dynamics AX before the recession hit. Whilst it took some long, hard thinking about whether to go ahead as the economy nose-dived, Jonathan says they have no regrets: We could see immediately Dynamics opened up a vast field of functionality that we just hadn’t had before.

Although we may or may not need all of it, it was obvious we’d never outgrow the system, and that’s what we wanted. You only want to take the pain of implementation once.”
It was this potential for expanding the use of the system that set Goodwins thinking about an e-commerce website. “We didn’t feel a burning need for an online shop at the time, but thought we would explore the opportunity.
ColumbusWebstore is part of the Columbus multi-channel retail  solution suite, which has been developed to sit inside Microsoft Dynamics. It provides a complete e-commerce solution that can be used to fully integrate B2B and B2C websites with the back office, unifying online operations with other sales channels.
“It wasn’t a difficult decision,” says Jonathan. “Columbus had lots of customers, so it clearly worked well, and even with our limited knowledge we could see it was a great fit. So things progressed quite quickly.”
Although it was impossible to predict how many customers would be prepared to move to online shopping, Jonathan Goodwin said it wasn’t a significant risk. “It was an educated guess, I suppose. Clearly a proportion of business was going to go this way; common sense tells you that. My feeling was, there was more benefit than risk. Compared to opening a new store, it wasn’t anywhere near as expensive and we’d already seen an increase in the number of people visiting and making enquiries through our old static website.”

It has certainly paid dividends. Just four months after the launch of the website, Goodwins has seen a big lift in the range of enquiries and an influx of orders from further afield. “Normally customers are only willing to drive for 15-20 minutes so traditionally our catchment area has been limited, but because of the new website, we’ve expanded our geographical range and now we are delivering right across Ireland and into the UK too.
Existing local customers are also benefitting from the new website; they are able to look up stock availability and prices in advance, which in turn is saving Goodwins a substantial amount of time and freeing up resource. Sales office staff previously had to dedicate a lot of their day to answering phone calls about prices and stock availability; now they can focus on their main job, making sales - something that has also been made easier through the improved online stock visibility.

Goodwins is now being found via product specific Internet searches. Quite a contrast to before when even regular customers were unsure exactly which items Goodwins stocked. “The new website has given us much greater online profile and credibility. Previously, we didn’t even have a product brochure, so only a fraction of our 5,000 lines were visible to customers, and they could walk in to a store not even knowing we carried items we consider to be our bread and butter. That’s all changed now.”
The website has also resolved many of the pricing issues Goodwins had been experiencing – a by-product of the volatile market. “Our printed price lists were quickly going out-of-date leading to confusion for customers,” Jonathan explains.

There is greater transparency of pricing too with the same discounts for bulk purchases available both online and in store. “Customers can now visit one of our branches knowing we have exactly what they need in stock, and the price they will pay – it’s great. Although it’s taken some time for the sales people to get used to customers knowing so much about prices and stock,” he laughs.
In fact stock management has improved dramatically. The new system is able to make various calculations based on past transactions then set suggested stock levels and make recommendations so Goodwins can efficiently forward-order. “We’ve always had good information on transactions, but this takes it to the next level. It means we’re always filling the warehouse with the right stock and not overstocking,” says Jonathan.

He is impressed too with the support he received from the Columbus team during the implementation - “they really stepped up to get the system in as quickly and smoothly as possible”- and is delighted with the seamless integration between the Columbus solution and Dynamics AX. “Information flows both ways. As soon as the stock levels change, the website is updated automatically, likewise with prices and text changes. And the orders from the website are effortlessly incorporated in to our sales order system. We don’t have duplications of anything, which makes it error-free.
“Our day-to-day experience is that ColumbusWebstore looks and performs just as any other module within our Dynamics system, which is exactly what we want; we didn’t want a separate system. I talk to people with one system for accounting and another for their website – that’s not the future.”

Whilst online ordering remains a small percentage of Goodwins’ overall business for now, Jonathan is enthusiastic about the value of the new website. “We’re not a pure e-commerce business so I’m not getting hung up on that. The fact is, the website is driving business to the shops and the shops are driving business to the website.”
“If we wanted another way of expanding our business and reaching new customers we would have had to open additional premises and in this climate and economy that is just not viable. We have stock, we keep it in and our customers appreciate the additional benefits and reliability resulting from our use of the ColumbusRetail system. I’m very pleased with that.”

Goodwins does not intend to stop there, however, it is looking to improve its web offering further still. “We’re reviewing the back-end features and making incremental improvements. We are also hoping to launch a mobile website very soon. We see this as a long-term project and we’ll keep developing and adding to it,” Jonathan concludes.

Fulfilling Needs

Download
Client:
Orbital Response
Industry:
Retail & Distribution
Challenge:
Remove risk around a legacy system to increase efficiency, in preparation for business growth of a multi site business
Solution Areas:
ColumbusRetail solutions

As the demands of consumers continue to increase, response handling and fulfilment company, Orbital, has equipped itself with he technology to keep pace. Thanks to a new end-to-end ERP system from multichannel retail specialist, Columbus, the organisation is providing its clients the enhanced flexibility and functionality they need to better serve their own customers. Its business base is expanding rapidly as a result.

Orbital Response is a division of Orbital Marketing Services Group. Established in 1972, the Orbital Group has become significant business, employing over 550 people in nine locations across the UK. The company was recently acquired by Menzies Distribution, a division of John Menzies plc. Originally a B2B operation serving the travel industry - delivering holiday brochures, airline timetables and other literature to travel agencies - the Orbital Group has evolved its services over the past 40 years in response to changing markets and customer demand.

The Orbital Response story began 12 years ago, when the company identified it needed to diversify further to capitalise on burgeoning mail order and, later, online shopping markets. “It became clear home shopping was increasing at such a rate, it needed to form a key part of our growth strategy,” explains Orbital Response Director, Nick Williams.

That strategy has borne fruit and today Orbital Response provides an extensive range of outsourced marketing services, from call centre operations, order processing for mail order and Internet retailing, to pick/pack/dispatch and direct mail services and a significant portion of business still comes from its roots in travel fulfilment. At peak times, the company processes up to 20,000 orders a day. Fortunately the busiest time for the travel industry (January), doesn’t coincide with the pre-Christmas peak for online and mail order fulfilment.

This number of transactions calls for some serious IT support and Williams says that over the years the business had acquired more than a dozen disparate systems to support its expanding range of services: “Some were off-the-shelf and others developed internally. They were doing different things but with areas of overlap and little or no integration. There were also the usual support issues inherent with legacy systems.” So in 2008, with growth on the agenda Orbital took the bold decision to invest in a new system - just as recession was starting to take hold. “Our system wasn’t broken as such,” explains Williams. “It just wasn’t quite fit for purpose; there was a lot of risk around it with duplication and unnecessary effort going in to it. We saw the potential for growth and the limitations of the existing infrastructure. It had served us well, but in order to drive the business growth we could see, with new clients, new services and new sectors we knew we needed to up our game.”

Because of the diversity of the Group, parts of the business remained robust during the economic downturn. “We were still making money, and the view was taken if we still want to be making money in five years, we invest now. And we’re very glad we did,” Williams says. Orbital decided to implement ColumbusMCR, a fully integrated ERP system built on Microsoft Dynamics AX. An end-to-end solution, ColumbusMCR provides comprehensive control over multi-channel sales, CRM, catalogue management, promotions, procurement, fulfilment, warehousing and customer service. The system is hosted at the company’s head office in Ashford, Kent, where its call centre is also based.The system operates across the two primary Orbital sites (Ashford and the main fulfilment in Rushden, Northamptonshire) with the potential to roll out to other locations. At peak times, the system has more than 70 users: orders entering via the call centre or third party websites, are processed in Ashford then called off by the team at Rushden. The business is able to provide for the different stock-holding requirements of clients - some hold stock at the Rushden site (or operate on a drop/ship basis), others deliver direct or use a third party distribution service.

Having a single integrated application running all areas of the business has created major efficiencies for the organisation. “We’ve had systems in the past that have been bolted on, or patched together, but now within a few mouse clicks the people in the call centre can see what’s in stock; what’s on purchase order; when it’s expected and so on. That’s a massive benefit.” Orbital Response had already decided its preferred option was to buy an off-the-shelf package and use in-house resources to customise and deliver bespoke enhancements for customers. “The alternatives were to buy another off the-shelf package managed by a third party; have a third party develop a bespoke system; or build one inhouse,” says Williams. “We had some skill in-house, plus we’d previously had some success subcontracting software development to India, but realistically ‘off-the-shelf’ was the most desirable solution for the business.” Williams’, firm belief is that the choice of implementation partner is at least as important as the system itself, and he has experience to back it up. “I didn’t think having a Microsoft system could ever be seen as a negative,” he explains. “But we did come across one potential client who liked our pitch, how we worked and our pricing, but because they’d had such a negative experience with a Dynamics AX reseller previously, they wouldn’t entertain the idea of working with us. You cannot underestimate how important it is to choose the right implementation partner. It is critical, absolutely critical.” Williams says that technology has been a deciding factor in winning the last half dozen contracts - some of them, very significant. Indeed, although the original priority was for Orbital to migrate its existing 50 customers to the new system, the first company to be transferred to the system was in fact a new client. Having itself recently implemented a Microsoft CRM package, which integrates closely with Dynamics AX, Orbital’s new system was a big tick in the box for them.

The move to the new system began with the warehouse management system in January 2009. With all stock transferred to the ColumbusRetail solution, the plan was to move customers over during a nine-month period. “There was no desperate rush and we wanted to make sure it was a planned and measured process,” says Williams. “But this new client win meant things were brought forward (it went live in April). “It was a bit earlier than we’d planned, but there was little point setting up a new client on an old system, which we planned to shut down six to nine months later. Actually, it was good to be given a bit of impetus and it certainly didn’t present any problems for Columbus or the system.” On the other hand, the migration to the new system was frustrated by the fact business was going so well. “We were winning new clients, and anything new immediately had to go on to the new system. In the end it took about two years before we finally switched off our old system.” Orbital’s customers, however, were unaware of the delay, and the move over to the new system went seamlessly. “We only told clients it was happening once we were ready. They were very happy with the service they were getting and the move to the new system didn't impact their business, other than enabling them to access additional functionality that wasn’t available before.”

A few years on Williams acknowledges that significant investment was required and has no regrets: “Ongoing support and improvement are part of the cost of doing business these days and it’s very difficult to do without it; and don’t forget we have to think about the service we are providing for our clients’ customers. “I would describe it as one of the best decisions we ever made. If we wound back the clock, there are some things in hindsight we’d do differently, but would the basic decisions remain the same? Certainly. And would we still buy the ColumbusRetail system? Absolutely.” The relationship between Columbus and Orbital is very positive. The two organisations have even partnered on other projects, with Columbus providing the front-end and back-office for customer websites and Orbital Response, the fulfilment services. “One client we pitched to last year was just implementing Dynamics AX and ColumbusMCR in their call centre. Using the same software from the same supplier reinforced their buying decision.” A key selling point of the ColumbusRetail system was its ability to allow Orbital Response to add its own enhancements and create bespoke functionality. “As a fulfilment house, a lot of what we do is clientdriven,” explains Williams. “Different clients want different things. For example, some want stock lists that show back orders, others want them to display suppliers, or how much stock has been used in the last week, and so on. “When catering for new requirements previously we were dependent on software suppliers to write specifications for additional functionality, which would inevitably be costly and timeconsuming because we were relying on external resource, and briefs were often misinterpreted. Now, we’ve got the flexibility to offer this in-house, so we write our own specifications and have a much greater level of understanding, allowing us to better meet client needs - and more quickly.”

Reporting has been a key area of improvement, with over 100 variations developed as a result. “Because the data exists in underlying SQL tables, we are able to manipulate it exactly as the client wants it to display. And all these reports are available in real-time via an online portal.” The real-time capabilities of the system have allowed Orbital to meet the growing expectations of tech-savvy consumers. “We have highly customisable automated emails for confirming orders, dispatch of products and so on, so our clients can improve customer communication and keep the end recipient up-to-date with their order.” Ultimately this has allowed Orbital to strategically expand its reach in to new markets and win new customers. Just five years ago the organisation leant heavily towards free literature fulfilment, with only 30% of its business coming from home shopping and mail order. Now more than 60% of business comes from this sector. “It’s allowed us to expand our client base. If we hadn’t made the change, we wouldn’t have retained some of our clients and we couldn’t have pitched for some of our contracts, let alone win them.” Orbital Response is handling more transactions now, but Williams believes the real benefit has been in what the business can offer. “We have the capability to handle more complex requirements now. That’s helped us to extend our work with certain clients. For example, several major charities began as simple mail order fulfilment clients, but we have been working with them to establish a web service whereby volunteers working in their High Street shops can request stock, which is then fulfilled from the charity’s or our own warehouse.” 

Orbital has also been able to offer its charity clients the option to sell higher value items such as design label clothing, not available on the shop floor, which are then delivered to the customer’s local store ready for collection. It is additional functionality like this that has enabled Orbital to deliver exactly what the customer is looking for. “Having modern technology that’s well supported
and has a good track record sets us apart from the competition. It has delivered the flexibility and capability to meet ever-changing client demand in today’s fast-paced environment.”

The ColumbusRetail system will continue to grow and evolve with Orbital Response, as it expands its customer offering further still. Whilst Williams is staying tight-lipped about exactly what the company has planned, he does reveal greater integration with third parties is on the cards. Watch this space.

On Par with the biggest and the best

Download
Client:
PARRS
Industry:
Retail & Distribution
Challenge:
meeting growth ambitions
Solution Areas:
ColumbusRetail
Products:
Dynamics AX
ColumbusRetail customer PARRS

Over 125 years in business, PARRS, is no stranger to innovation. A far cry from its days manufacturing sack barrows and wheel carts, the family-owned enterprise now distributes 20,000 catalogues, a quarter of a million brochures, and has an online product portfolio spanning 24 individual product categories. Selling more than 2,000 industrial and commercial products from handling and lifting, health and safety, matting and storage, to cycle and seasonal products, PARRS is one of the largest suppliers of handling equipment in the UK. Four years ago, however, PARRS growth ambitions were stifled as it battled with a hugely inefficient multi-channel order management system. Ten years old, the out-dated back-office system came with huge annual costs. Samantha Donlon at PARRS explains: “The system had taken on a lot of modifications over the years, so not only were we spending a lot of money each year on releases and updates for all these modifications, some of the modifications we weren’t even using. We were getting frustrated because we weren’t able to move forward.”

On top of large running costs, the system wasn’t providing the company with the functionality it needed. With 80% of products sold directly through an extensive network of UK and European distributors, and 20% through its 12,000 square foot warehouse in Redditch, PARRS deals with a huge set of multi-client requirements and requires an economies of scale business model. Yet the system wasn’t able to handle simple tasks like quantity break pricing on products and producing customer specific reports. Instead, PARRS had to rely on using spreadsheets to carry out returns offline and a fax machine to send over purchase orders. The accounts department was little better; manually invoicing and still using a card machine to process orders, much time was being wasted carrying out processes manually that could soon be automated by a good management system.

PARRS knew it needed to change, especially if it was to continue growing its multi-channel business; and so Richard Scholes, Managing Director put the project out to tender. But it was 2009, the depths of the recession, a competitor had just gone into administration and budgets were tight. It wasn’t until 2011, when the industry was more settled, that PARRS was finally in a position to invest.
So two years on, the tendering process started again. Impressed by the company the first time round, Columbus was in the running alongside three other suppliers.

After a lengthy selection process with all four potential suppliers the decision was made. PARRS chose ColumbusMCR, a comprehensive order management system built on Microsoft Dynamics AX, to manage everything from telephone sales, customer service, order management, direct marketing, together with the core Dynamics AX accounts and purchasing functionality. “Whilst we were impressed with the size and scale of one of the larger organisations, it was Columbus' approach that lead us to go with them,” explains Donlon. “They talked to us like human beings and not in program language. Since I was going to be the project leader and I haven’t got a technical background by any means, I needed somebody who could talk to me, be direct, but not bombard me with language that wouldn’t mean anything to me. Columbus came across as a customer service driven company, and that’s why we went with them in the end.”
Kicking off in the summer of 2011, the project began with a ‘requirements analysis’ – Columbus went in to PARRS to discuss with the team what they were doing at the moment and what they needed help with. This was followed by a ‘gap fit’ analysis. “It was a very good fit for us, more than 85%” says Donlon. “Then we got to the nitty gritty of modifications we needed to fill in the gaps.”

With the system carefully matched to the requirements, PARRS was ready for the workshops to implement the system. “Even though we weren’t using all the functions in AX, it was still quite a mammoth task and the deadline was tight,” explains Donlon. “We wanted the new system up and running by the beginning of February 2012 to coincide with the company year-end, so we could start afresh on a new system. We had to be very organised and I had to make sure I knew exactly what was going on at all times.”

Importing customer account information, product information and suppliers was the first task. In between on-site consultancy meetings with Columbus, rigorous testing of the huge volume of data on the new system was carried out, ensuring no stone was left unturned. The biggest challenge? Getting everyone to come round to the new ways of working, says Scholes. “When we went live with our previous system a lot of modifications had been made for the accounts department. People got in to the zone of ‘this is how we do things now’ and less of ‘how can we improve it in the future?’ The most important thing with any new system is to get buy in from everyone.”
Despite the challenges, the new system went live on time and on budget, with the whole team behind it. The benefits were immediate.

The company went from processing credit card payments manually, to an integrated system allowing customer service to take credit card payments over the phone and instantly see if a payment had been processed and authorised. With the comprehensive search  functionality within the ColumbusMCR solution, finding customer information has become quick and efficient. Profit from mail order and catalogue business comes from repeat buyers and multi-buyers; thus exemplary service is required for customer retention. The customer-specific pricing in the new system means PARRS can now easily manage its key customers’ preferential rates.
With over 2,000 live products to manage orders for, a key requirement for PARRS was automating correspondence. With ColumbusMCR, automatic emails are now generated through a batch routine in the background, dramatically optimising efficiency for PARRS, by sending out programmed emails for invoicing, statements, order confirmation and purchase orders.

When it comes to reporting, Columbus' SQL-server based facilities in Dynamics AX, allows PARRS to compile accurate reports in terms of which customer ordered which product, enabling the company to offer customer-specific promotions. Online returns are now logged using the system, so all the information on a customer is in one place. Donlon sums it up: “the great thing about ColumbusMCR is how you can search for a customer, see when you’ve called them or left them a quotation. Rather than using spreadsheets to store the information, it’s all here in a shared area, so you can pull it together at the touch of the button.”
“How does the new system measure up against the old? There’s no comparison in my view, everything has become a lot simpler and easier on the eye with  the Columbus Retail solution,” says Scholes.

For PARRS, finding a company that wasn’t just there for the installation, but offered on-going support and continued to move forwards with the organisation was a fundamental part of the decision process. “We needed to make sure we were dealing with a company that would still work closely us with after go-live,” says Scholes. “Columbus gave the impression they would do that, and to be fair that’s exactly what they have done - definitely.”
With the ColumbusMCR system in place, PARRS now has the comprehensive functionality it requires to optimise its marketing strategy, process payments, manage orders, automate correspondence and enable one-step returns, all w hilst making significant cost savings and time efficiencies.

BVG Airflo Group

BVG Airflo

 

BVG-Airflo is a multi-channel retailer of footwear and clothing, fishing tackle and home and garden products through mail-order, Ecommerce, newspaper branded reader offers, B2B distribution, retail shops and export. Growing expansion and acquisitions meant that their old system could not give them access to the data they required in the time they needed it. The Columbus solution now gives BVG-Airflo the ability to make the right strategic decisions about which products to trade in a rapidly changing market. This has been a key component in their success.

"We are really pleased we chose Columbus to guide us through the implementation. Their open, honest and outspoken approach was exactly what was needed to ensure the project was a success."

Fortuna

Fortuna

Fortuna is a leading distributor of tobacco products with 13 regional branches, collaboration with over 6500 retail outlets over 40 cities. Rises in the price of raw materials along with increased competition in the market led Fortuna to look to improve their efficiencies and update their information systems. Fortuna selected industry expert Columbus and now has a solution that runs throughout the business that helps manage costs, drive efficiencies and connect the supply chain that has led to increased business and a great outlook for the future.

"Columbus was selected for its expertise in retail, global presence and experience of implementing successful projects."

Gala Center

Gala Center

 

Gala Center, founded in the early 90s, specializes in the wholesale and distribution of consumer goods including tools and auto accessories, household and kitchen goods, gifts, sporting and recreation goods. To help promote growth they wanted a flexible pricing policy, improved quality of service and reduced cost of processing and storage of goods. They selected the Columbus solution because it was the most reliable, productive and repeatedly proven solution. The benefits have included improved operations of their complex warehouses, reduced time and cost of storing goods, and improved completeness and quality in the execution of orders.

"We continue to adjust and refine the solution and we are confident that the good support and quick response to new challenges from Columbus will help ensure continued success."

 

Spar Kjøp

Spar Kjøp

 

Spar Kjøp is a major catalog retailer selling textiles and clothing, gifts and games through both mail order and their 18 stores. They have 700 employees and expedite 400,000 packages per year, with an average of 2,000 daily. The communication between ColumbusRetail and the warehouse is therefore vitally important. It is critical that they pick and send the right goods. The key benefits of the new solution is the automated warehouse, the increase in ecommerce activity and streamlining of the entire value chain including stores, internet site, inventory, invoicing, accounting, personnel and payroll bringing cost optimizations at every level.

"The new integrated system provides us with a competitive advantage in the marketplace."

What Our Customers have to Say

History & Heraldry

Goodwins

Orbital Response

PARRS

BVG Airflo Group

Fortuna

Gala Center

Spar Kjop

Learn More About eCommerce Solutions

Download the overview
Columbus Webstore fact sheet

Download Your Ecommerce FactSheet

Read more
Please Contact Me