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Manolo Blahnik gets high productivity with Centric PLM

Sep '18
Courtesy: Business wire
Courtesy: Business wire
Manolo Blahnik, the legendary shoe brand, is getting productivity and efficiency since implementing Centric Software’s Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) solution. Centric Software provides innovative solutions to fashion, retail, footwear, outdoor, luxury and consumer goods companies to achieve strategic and operational digital transformation goals.

Legendary shoe designer Manolo Blahnik began making and selling shoes in London in the early 1970s, in a career spanning almost 50 years. He has since become one of the world’s most influential footwear makers. True to his early days, Manolo Blahnik still sketches each shoe design by hand and personally perfects the lasts and heels of his exquisitely crafted footwear. Manolo Blahnik is now a worldwide brand, sold in boutiques and department stores across more than 40 countries. While the core business is still women’s shoes, Manolo Blahnik also produces bags, belts, socks, other accessories and men’s footwear.

“Our team grew significantly within a short period of time,” says Bruno Oghittu, digital and logistic director at Manolo Blahnik. “We wanted a PLM solution that could seamlessly integrate with our accounting software, PIM system, inventory management platform and wholesale ordering system. The right PLM system would also automate processes, reduce duplicate data entry and share data efficiently with suppliers.”

Manolo Blahnik selected Centric as their PLM partner in 2016 and implemented core modules of the Centric 8 PLM platform.

As Oghittu says, “We selected the system primarily because of its flexibility. It’s possible to set up the system exactly how you want, and there’s no hard coding involved, so the software can be updated without any major issues. So far, Centric has never said ‘No, it’s not possible.’ Centric is used by many major shoe brands, including luxury brands, which gave us confidence that they truly understood our industry.”

Interestingly, Manolo Blahnik chose to do a ‘back-to-front’ implementation, starting with the production side and the supplier portal before tackling product development and design.

“The Centric team was able to adapt the implementation to our exact needs,” says Oghittu. “They also created some specific tools we requested. For instance, it’s now possible for factories to log into the PLM supplier portal, see their purchase orders and click on a link that automatically generates a report with printable barcode stickers for that order. This automated feature is a great timesaver and it makes order fulfillment more accurate. In the first year after we went live, Centric also helped us to rationalise our colour system and switch to a Pantone-based colour library.”

Eighteen months later, the company has cut down on manual data entry, duplication and related errors, improved collaboration with suppliers and developed a more streamlined process for dealing with product data, thanks to Centric PLM.

“We no longer have to enter the same data in different ways in lots of different systems,” explains Oghittu. “We enter data once in PLM and PLM shares the information wherever it is needed. Centric PLM has linked all of the various technologies we use from design to retail, completing a digital transformation across our operations.”

As Oghittu concludes, “We absolutely trust the Centric team and Centric provides solutions that are tailored to genuinely support us and our needs. Our Centric contacts are more like colleagues than a supplier. We have exciting plans to do more with PLM, from utilising the full capabilities of the supplier portal to automating image uploading to digital catalogues. Our relationship with Centric is direct, collaborative and productive.”

“When Manolo Blahnik chose to implement Centric PLM, we were delighted,” says Chris Groves, president and CEO of Centric Software. “Months later, we are proud to note that Manolo Blahnik are experiencing very positive results and expanding their use of Centric PLM. We look forward to continuing to partner with Manolo Blahnik as the company embarks on future growth.” (SV)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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