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Acme United

ACME United reduces inventory by 10-20% during acquisitions

COMPANY: ACME United
WEBSITE: www.AcmeUnited.com
INDUSTRY: Consumer Goods
PUBLIC: AMEX: ACU
JOHN GALT SOLUTION: Atlas Planning Suite

Results

  • Inventory reduction of 15-20%
  • Customer service level increase from 92-98%

Company

For the past 150 years, Acme United Corporation has been a leading worldwide supplier of innovative cutting, measuring, first aid and sharpening products to the school, home, office, hardware, sporting goods and industrial markets with operations in the United States, Canada, Europe (located in Germany) and Asia (located in Hong Kong and China). Acme United is publicly traded on the NYSE and has nine main brands: Westcott, Clauss, PhysiciansCare, Pac-Kit, Camillus, First Aid Only, Cuda, DMT and Spill Magic.
 

Challenge

Acme struggled to drive adoption of their forecasting process. Though their ERP system included a forecasting module, Acme found it limited and opted instead to produce forecasts manually through spreadsheets. This process was cumbersome and left Acme unable to reach the customer level of demand, causing collaboration with sales and management to suffer. Visibility into promotions and total sales volume was virtually nonexistent. As a result, Acme's inventories became inefficient, and their fill rates continued to drop, reducing their competitiveness. With customer-level planning and collaboration becoming critical issues, Acme sought a new supply chain planning system.

Solution

The Atlas Planning Suite was selected for its flexibility, rapid deployment, and its ability to grow with their process. With Demand Management, Acme gained the ability to forecast at the customer level without manual effort. The Planning Portal gave Acme rapid and easy collaboration with their sales and management teams, increasing visibility into promotions and market conditions. Inventory Management allowed Acme to put the improved forecast into practice with optimized inventory levels.

Benefits

Atlas delivered rapid and significant improvements in Acme's planning process. Within the first year, Acme reduced inventory levels by 15-20%. Customer service levels rose simultaneously from 92% to 98%, allowing Acme to capture further sales. Since implementing Atlas, Acme has performed several acquisitions that have added considerable volume to their planning task, but because of the new planning efficiencies Acme has been able to keep pace with the same planning staff as before. Acme plans to implement the Rough Cut Capacity Planning module of Atlas in the near future to extend their functionality even further. "Atlas gives us all the flexibility and power we need to improve our customer relationships", says Steve Jensen, Forecast Manager at Acme United.

With the statistical power and integrated business planning approach of the Atlas Planning Suite, we were able to build our S&OP process on a strong foundation.
Steve Jensen, Forecast Manager, Acme United

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