PLM: A Perfect Fit

UK fashion chain New Look selects product lifecycle management software to cut time-to-profits

Plano, TX — April 3, 2003 — EDS today announced that UK women's fashion chain New Look has selected its Teamcenter product lifecycle management (PLM) software to reduce its "time-to-profits" by linking its buyers, designers and supply chain partners in a collaborative, Web-based environment.

The New Look contract marks the initial adoption of Teamcenter for retail applications, according to EDS. Under terms of the contract, New Look will use Teamcenter to share product design and production data in real time among more than 300 users, including up to 250 suppliers, throughout its global supply chain.

"To stay ahead in the highly competitive and cost sensitive fashion market, we needed to reduce the time it was taking us to get an idea from the design stage and into the stores through a complex supply chain, while at the same time containing or reducing our costs and improving our 'time-to-profits,'" said Janet Biggs, director of trading for New Look.

She explained that New Look is rolling out the system within its buying team and supply chain. Users are able to send and receive design information, as well as information on production schedules and events in an interactive environment, while the system manages the workflow from design sketch to manufactured item. As a result, the fashion chain stated that the time needed to take a design from initial sketch to finished item — excluding shipping times — will be reduced by up to 30 percent.

"The prototype implementation we ran proved our estimates in terms of time-savings and the potential business benefits," said Biggs. "We are confident that, following the full implementation of the system, we will be looking at an increase in sales of some 6 percent annually, which would bring an additional £13 million in profits. This will be as a direct result of our ability to reduce stock shortfalls and overruns."

Future New Look plans for the PLM system include interfacing it to its RETEK merchandising system and using EDS' Teamcenter visual portal technology. This latter step would enable designs, in the form of 2D sketches, 3D images, photographs and videos, to be viewed simultaneously in different locations around the world, replacing the current use of fax and e-mail with Web-based, online conferences.

EDS PLM Solutions, according to the provider, is pushing into new industries with Teamcenter playing the key role. Most recently, EDS announced the new releases of its industry solutions built on Teamcenter, including upgraded versions of Teamcenter Aerospace and Defense, Teamcenter Automotive Supplier and Teamcenter High Tech Electronics, and the launch of a new product, Teamcenter Consumer and Packaged Goods.

The contract between New Look and EDS, the terms of which were not disclosed, was signed in the fourth quarter of 2002 and was included in the total for fourth quarter business signings announced along with the company's annual results on February 6, 2003.

Today's announcement comes on the heels of Gartner Inc., an IT industry research and advisory firm, listing EDS in the leader's quadrant of its first PLM industry Magic Quadrant study.