Warehouse Management, Supply Chain Execution Suite for Crystal Distribution

3PL logistics and fulfillment provider to go live with suite at cold storage facilities in 2004

3PL logistics and fulfillment provider to go live with suite at cold storage facilities in 2004

Waterloo, IA — October 17, 2003 — Crystal Distribution Services Inc., a third-party logistics and fulfillment services provider, announced that it has purchased a suite of warehouse management (WMS) and supply chain execution (SCE) solutions from Delfour Corp, Markham, Ontario. Crystal Distribution expects to go live with the new solution at its cold storage facilities in early 2004, according CEO Tom Poe and Delfour President and CEO Joe Couto.

In an associated transaction, the company also acquired EZConnect EDI/XML (electronic data interchange/eXtensible Markup Language), an e-business translation and connectivity solution developed and marketed by ACOM Solutions Inc., Long Beach, Calif. EZConnect will be installed in the first quarter of 2004, with customer-by-customer implementations to follow, according to Larry Herzog, Crystal's manager of information services. ACOM is Delfour's e-business solutions partner.

Crystal Distribution operates seven distribution centers, three of which comprise more than 5,000,000 cubic feet of freezer and cooler space. The company provides freezer-cooler storage and various repackaging and fulfillment services to most of the top Midwest meat and poultry packing companies. Its dry storage facilities currently handle snack foods and beverage products for a variety of manufacturers. The Delfour/ACOM solution is intended to serve the cold storage operations.

Herzog said his company believes the combined solution will add a great deal of power and flexibility to its operations. "It became apparent to us that our existing warehouse management system was no longer able to support our long-term growth and development, and in order for it to do so, we would have had to support new development," he explained. "Conversely, Delfour has brought us a state-of-the-art solution that has been designed from the ground up as an integrated product suite and which remains in continuous development."

He added that the integration of ACOM's EDI-XML solution with the Delfour suite would allow Crystal Distribution to conduct an increasing amount of business electronically with its customers, resulting in substantial savings and expedited processes on both sides.

Crystal's Delfour suite includes SmartEnterprise2, a supply chain execution foundation for a variety of specialized modules, which includes WarehouseLogic, a comprehensive automated warehouse management system that enables 3PL logistics providers to manage all aspects of warehouse operations, administration and shipping for multiple inventory owners concurrently in complex distribution/fulfillment centers. It also includes e-Vista, which provides customers with supply chain visibility so that they can know the disposition of their inventory at any time.

Additionally, ACOM's EZConnect software will enable the company to exchange documents with its trading partners in any data format, with inbound documents automatically translated to XML and outbound documents issued in the trading partner's preferred format.