TALLY WEiJL is a leading international fashion company that designs, produces and sells trendy, sexy, and affordable fashion for young women. Wildly successful, they’ve opened new stores throughout Europe, at times more than a hundred per year. At that rate, they knew it was time to seek stronger, more scalable planning and management tools.
€515 million (2011)
Supply Chain, Marketing, Information Technology
Consumer Products, Retail
SAP for Retail, SAP Merchandise and Assortment Planning, SAP Supply Chain Management
Founded in Switzerland in 1984 by Tally Elfassi-Weijl and Beat Grüring, TALLY WEiJL is represented worldwide in 31 countries with over 760 stores and 2,800 employees.
Now with over 760 stores in 31 countries (and counting), TALLY WEiJL built its business by capitalizing on demand for trendy, attractive, reasonably priced women’s clothing – fast fashion. A glance at the smart, sexy creations on the company’s web site shows why their business is growing at an annual rate of 30%.
Who’s our customer?
Through franchising, TALLY WEiJL had avoided many of the complications of doing business internationally by leaving much of the country-specific planning and execution to its franchisees. TALLY WEiJL has built up its software arsenal systematically over the years, and realized they needed a strong backbone in place, before they could implement new retail-specific tools. Therefore their first step was to establish a solid enterprise resource planning (ERP) environment.
We wanted to continue our exponential growth, and to integrate the entire company around a single source of truth. To do that, we needed a highly scalable platform with strong functionality for retail planning and management.
Several years ago TALLY WEiJL made the decision to use the SAP® ERP Financials solution for all aspects of finance and controlling, along with the SAP NetWeaver® Business Warehouse component for reporting. However, for merchandise planning and management it employed spreadsheets and an application from another vendor. This sufficed when the company was smaller, but the system began reaching its limits after several years of 30% revenue increases.
Keeping up with our growth…
To compound the situation, TALLY WEiJL was moving from a franchise to an owned-and-operated retail business model and recognized that the change would significantly increase the complexity of its planning processes. “With a lot more stores and merchandise to plan and manage ourselves in many countries, we definitely needed stronger, more scalable planning and management tools.”
With SAP software already in place for financials and reporting, it made sense to go with the SAP ERP application and achieve complete software integration.
While implementing SAP ERP, TALLY WEiJL moved ahead with its plans to replace the aging merchandise management system. It examined other possibilities, but the benefits of continuing with an all-SAP solution again proved overwhelming. The company added the SAP Supply Chain Management application, SAP for Retail solutions, and the SAP Merchandise and Assortment Planning application to buttress the rest of its SAP software.
TALLY WEiJL has finished deploying the new software’s planning functionality for merchandise and stores, and is in production mode on a pilot basis.
“Based on results so far, we are going to see a big payoff from automating our planning processes. There was a lot of manual manipulation effort and duplication in our previous methodology, steps that are fully automated with our SAP software. Our efficiency is soaring. We also have new powers to maximize our profits by taking advantage of the differences among the markets we serve. For example, typical women’s clothing sizes vary country to country, a fact we have the tools to take advantage of as we plan product deployments.”
There is another key benefit that accrues to every TALLY WEiJL employee who uses business software: “We have a single version of the truth."
TALLY WEiJL constantly had data disparities due to their patchwork legacy environment. That is one of the big reasons they stayed exclusive with SAP solutions, thus ensuring a conflict-free process.
Some of the benefits
TALLY WEiJL is interested in SAP HANA technological improvements because it will enable them to bring all their data together. Fashion is about speed, and they recognize that they need to put themselves in a position where they can make decisions more quickly than their competitors.
TALLY WEiJL has many plans to take further advantage of its SAP software to move into additional markets and open additional channels. The company intends to build custom solutions with its SAP software and embed them for fashion allocation, store clustering, and stock balancing as it builds out assortment and in-season planning processes.
One of the most promising future plans is launching direct to consumer internet sales, which may become a reality within the next year. TALLY WEiJL believes that their investment in SAP software will help make the Internet channel a reality.
Online selling is just one example of the kind of business move that TALLY WEiJL is now equipped for, thanks to their solid foundation with SAP solutions. Succeeding in fashion requires speed, and at the end of the day being able to make decisions quicker than their competitors. So, another logical next step has Tally Weijl exploring how SAP HANA might help them.