‘Demand forecasting’ systems becoming popular

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 20th December 2012

One of Australia’s major food and beverage groups Lion Foods is going with UXC Red Rock Consulting to develop a demand forecasting system which is intended to increase accuracy of demand forecasting.

UXC Red Rock Consulting is Oracle’s key partner in Australia and New Zealand. It recently won a competitive tender to manage the implementation of the Demantra Collaborative Demand Forecasting for Lion across its beer, spirits and wine businesses in Australia and New Zealand.

Lion, which is one of Australasia’s leading beverage and food companies, has appointed Red Rock to provide a single platform for its demand forecasting across Australia and New Zealand. Its objective in doing so is to improve forecast accuracy and enable business processes that are aligned with the Gartner’s Sales and Operations Planning model.

A spokesperson for Red Rock said it is helping many organisations to revolutionise the approach to managing their supply chains efficiently. The approach is focused on reducing supply chain costs while ensuring on-shelf availability of product for customers. In helping companies get smarter information flow across the interrelated areas of the business, Red Rock customers are seeing increased efficiencies and higher on-going returns.

David Tape, IT Director at Lion said “Demand Forecasting program supports our strategic initiative to establish a world class demand system that delivers a ‘one number forecast’ which will meet all business unit forecasting requirements. We will work closely with Red Rock to provide a systems platform that will enhance the development of our demand forecasting capability. This includes a new S&OP process and an investment within the Lion demand team.

“There are varied levels of systems capability across the different business units within Lion. The intent is to deploy a common solution across the beer, spirits, and wine business units. The initial roll out will be with NZ beer, wine and spirits. In Australia it will begin with our beer business. Future projects which have been identified include the roll out to our dairy & drinks business, trade promotions planning, sales & operations planning as well as managed services,” Mr Tape said.

“We invested significantly in the evaluation of best-in-class Collaborative Demand Forecasting solutions from around the world before coming to our decision to partner with Red Rock. Oracle Demantra was the only tool we could identify that supported the key functional capabilities that are important to our processes,” Mr Tape added.

A collaborative approach to demand forecasting is becoming increasingly popular, with effective planning of demand requiring input from multiple sources including sales, marketing, operations, finance and the customer ensure the supply chain is harmonised to ‘one number’ forecasting principles. Getting this process right reduces significant costs in the supply chain while ensure the successful execution of key sales and marketing initiatives, including promotions and new product launches.

Jonathan Rubinsztein, CEO Red Rock Consulting said “Lion’s investment in people, process and systems will enable on-going, improved effectiveness from demand forecasting. Lion’s strategy, supported by transformational change to its sales and operations planning process across the ANZ business, will deliver competitive advantage and a more efficient process.

“We are very proud to partner with Lion in this very important business initiative. Our delivery combines world leading technology from Oracle with the implementation, industry experience and deep Supply Chain and Demand Management best practice processes from Red Rock,” Mr Rubinsztein added.