Unfreezing the Logistics Supply Chain

Tibbett & Britten to use software to manage frozen, refrigerated foods inventory for big box chain

Tibbett & Britten to use software to manage frozen, refrigerated foods inventory for big box chain

Toronto — February 11, 2004 — Perry Brock, Tibbett & Britten Group (TBG) Americas vice president of information technology, and Delfour President Joe Couto announced this week that TBG has implemented a new application of its Delfour WarehouseLogic warehouse management system to handle frozen and refrigerated foods inventory for the Canadian operations of a major U.S.-based big box retailer that has entered the market.

The retailer opened its first four Canadian stores in the Toronto area in late 2003 and intends to expand into major metropolitan areas across Canada. TBG has operated a Canadian distribution center for the dry goods operations of the company's parent for several years.

Tibbett & Britten Group is one of the world's largest 3PL providers, with 40 percent of its business done by the Americas group. A WarehouseLogic user for some five years, TBG with this implementation is acting in a true wholesaler capacity for the first time, taking actual ownership of inventory from frozen and refrigerated food vendors, subcontracting inventory storage and management to a 3PL logistics provider partner, receiving and fulfilling orders, and billing the individual retail outlets for product shipped.

"This is an entirely new dimension of our business," Brock said. "Heretofore our activities have focused on operating dedicated warehouses for our clients. In this case, we obtained dedicated temperature-controlled refrigerator and freezer space in the Toronto area from a subcontracting 3PL provider, Atlas Cold Storage, which is also a long-time WarehouseLogic user. We have a mirror-image of their inventory data, which enables us to operate as seamlessly as if the product were at our own property."

WarehouseLogic said its software enables organizations to manage billing, receiving, stock locating, storage, order verification, order packing and shipment of products concurrently in complex distribution and fulfillment centers. The company said it enables increased inventory turns and reduced inventory levels, facilitating just-in-time (JIT) deliveries and improving accuracy and productivity.

The solution also includes a B2B e-commerce module for TBG trading partners to exchange transaction documents computer-to-computer. The B2B module can receive and transmit trading partner communications in any document format. On receipt, it translates the documents into the Delfour flat file format for execution, and retranslates return documents into the preferred vendor format.

Documents implemented for the six current electronic data interchange (EDI)-enabled trading partners include purchase orders, advance ship notices, invoices, inventory inquiry/advice, warehouse shipping order, warehouse stock transfer shipment advice, warehouse shipping advice and warehouse inventory adjustment advice.

"Besides being a powerful global 3PL presence, TBG is also among the most innovative in the field as demonstrated currently by the sophisticated manner in which they have exploited the power and depth of Delfour solutions," Couto observed. "It is rewarding to see our solutions at work in large scale environments as well as in 3PL operations of all types and sizes."