Tempe, AZ June 21, 2002 Technology company IBM and supply chain solution provider i2 Technologies this week announced the results of benchmarking tests for i2's replenishment planning solution running on an IBM server, with the application hitting a peak rate of 93 million location/stock keeping units/day in the controlled laboratory environment.
The two companies conducted the tests at IBM Laboratories to demonstrate the linear scalability of i2's Replenishment Planner solution. The lab performed the tests on the IBM DB2 Universal Database (UDB) version 7.2 Enterprise-Extended Edition (EEE) on IBM's eServer pSeries 680 at IBM facilities in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., and the tests were completed within a typical daily batch processing window.
The two companies assert that the ability to manage a growing number of SKU/locations in a scalable manner is a critical requirement for any retail forecasting and replenishment solution. i2 said its Replenishment Planner's distributed parallel architecture, combined with IBM servers and databases, is designed to scale linearly by adding incremental system resources as volumes grow.
In IBM's benchmarking environment, the i2 solution generated a time-phased replenishment plan equivalent to an INFOREM plan for 93 million location/SKU/day. (Inforem, which i2 purchased from IBM in 2000, is a solution for retail replenishment.) A total of 15 million SKU/locations were planned, of which six million SKU/locations were planned for 14 days, and nine million SKU/locations for one day.
i2 said its replenishment solution is designed to support time-phased planning, which gives retailers the visibility to see and respond to future constraints in their supply chain, instead of reacting to these constraints as they occur. Replenishment Planner is designed to be a scalable, multi-tier, multiple time period, constraint based replenishment solution that incorporates the best features of i2 INFOREM, which i2 purchased from IBM in 2000.
"Traditionally, enterprises have licensed solutions with little visibility into the solution's ability to scale beyond a basic pilot or point implementation." said Karen Peterson, vice president and research director at technology research firm Gartner. "Benchmarking exercises are a critical requirement in order to determine a solution's ability to meet complex business needs in a time-effective manner. Benchmarking in the retail industry is especially important because retailers process an enormous amount of data that is highly variable and sometimes volatile."
"The i2 and IBM solution is designed to improve the retailer's ability to manage their businesses to forecast and meet customer needs," said Paul Govoni with IBM Retail & CPG Solutions.
"Through benchmarking exercises such as this, i2 is able to evaluate and improve software quality with the ultimate goal of continually delivering solutions that bring value to our retail customers," said Dr. Pallab Chatterjee, i2 president for solutions operations.