Lufthansa Technik Logistik Links Supply Chain and Financial Systems

Taps software from Ascential to optimize financial management, enable real-time financial control

Westboro, MA — September 8, 2004 — Lufthansa Technik Logistik (LTL), a logistics specialist for the aviation industry, said this week it is using Ascential Corp.'s Enterprise Integration Suite to link accounting systems with inventory management, storage, shipping and transportation management. LTL added that it has achieved real-time insight into financial performance, improved accounting processes and automated several administrative tasks using Ascential Software solutions.

"Ascential Software enables us to transform mountains of supply chain data into a catalyst for significant financial management improvements," said Dr. Andreas Roth, head of information technology, LTL. "For instance, our accounting systems can now detect the completion of a spare part shipment to a repair site. Then, our systems automatically issue a payment to the spare part supplier and update our own books accordingly. Benefits include an accurate, real-time view of financial performance at any given point in time to help guide strategic business decisions, and the automation of payment processes, which saves time and money."

LTL's supply chain systems yield a wealth of data on various processes, including inventory maintenance, storage, shipping and transport management. LTL looked to capitalize on this abundance of data and implemented Ascential Software enterprise data integration solutions to identify, extract, transform and load the accounting-ready data into an SAP R/3 accounting system. Once in the system, the data is recognized and account assignment information can be determined.

"The ability to sense and respond to changing demand signals requires not just the underlying business systems, but the IT infrastructure, process, and people to support it and manage the change," according to an August 24, 2004 Alert Highlight authored by Dennis Gaughan, research director at AMR Research. "As AMR Research's benchmarking data shows, by responding more quickly to demand, companies gain significantly on critical metrics like return on assets (ROA), earnings per share and profit margins."

Each year since the initial implementation at LTL in 2001, two million process records are automatically extracted and transferred to accounting. In LTL's original system, this degree of optimization would not have been possible due to the sheer volume of supply chain data. Beyond LTL's benefits of improved financial controls and automation of administrative tasks, LTL reports that its customers and supply chain partners have also experienced improvements in their own accounting processes, including faster, more accurate accounts receivables.

"Ascential Software helps organizations such as LTL profit from [enterprise resource planning (ERP)] investments and transform their supply chain into a value chain," said Thracy Varvoglis, executive director of industry solutions, Ascential Software. "With our data integration solutions, as well as our partnership and expertise with SAP, LTL's supply chain and financial management systems become interdependent, driving improved efficiency and information accuracy in both operational areas."

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