Watami Selects Infor as Supply Chain Management Platform
Business growth requires new platform to streamline supply chain management and accelerate management strategy roll-out.
Watami Group, which holds Watami Co., Ltd. as its main business, is an integrated food business that mainly operates food and beverage and meal delivery services basing on its mission "To become the group that collects the most thank yous (Arigato) on Earth". Watami Group has been putting its focus on safe and handmade quality foods since its establishment, and now is working on implementing a unique industrial model for vertically integrating its operations through the primary industries of livestock, dairy, and organic farming; the secondary industries of manufacturing and processing; and the tertiary industries of distribution and retailing. To drive the implementation of this model, Watami is now focusing on enhancing its financial structure through merchandising (MD) Reform.
This MD Reform involves both optimizing short-term operations, such as sharing same ingredients in different F&B concepts, revising specifications of raw materials and shipping standards, and integrating menu planning process; as well as re-visiting medium-term production -- logistics and retail outlet systems. The reconstruction of Watami's supply chain management (SCM) platform is the center of this MD Reform. Watami had been customizing its existing SCM system in conjunction with its business expansion to such an extent that it lacked the necessary flexibility to support business strategy changes made for the MD Reform.
Watami sought a new SCM platform that would fulfill its MD Reform requirements, and after a thorough evaluation, selected Infor CloudSuite Food & Beverage, Infor's cloud-based ERP solution for the food and beverage industry.
Selection Rationale and Deployment Benefits
Infor CloudSuite Food & Beverage is a cloud ERP suite designed to help food and beverage industry companies using the highly-reliable Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform through a subscription model that greatly reduces initial IT investment costs. It is equipped with all the functions indispensable to global food and beverage businesses, including multi-site capabilities, product recipe management, process-type production management, warehouse management, traceability support, and quality compliance.
Watami's decision to deploy Infor CloudSuite Food & Beverage was in large part due to the solution's industry-specific functions -- multi-site capabilities required for the management of overseas production sites, functions supporting precision production planning, its V-shaped BoM (Bill of Materials), etc. -- without the need for customization, and the flexibility and scalability afforded by the cloud that will support constantly-changing business strategies. Watami also gave high marks to Infor's outstanding user experience and deployment methodology with its knowledge of global standards.
Watami will use Infor CloudSuite Food & Beverage together with Infor Factory Track - Infor's manufacturing execution system (MES) - to build an SCM platform to integrate the Group through production management. By leveraging the Infor SCM platform with its capabilities to support supply chain management streamlining and acceleration of management strategy, Watami will implement MD Reforms for promoting its food-oriented vertical integration model.
The Key Reforms Watami is Implementing with Infor's SCM Platform
- Centralized management of production management information to boost operational efficiencies
- Material traceability and quality assurance through ordering, manufacturing, and shipping processes
- Advanced prediction of supply and demand/order transaction volume
- Digitalization and labor savings for factory operations
- Acceleration of management decisions through the utilizing of business intelligence tools
"Rebuilding our SCM platform is an important aspect of our MD reforms for centralizing the management of crucial business data based on our production management system and for building beneficial mechanisms for making real-time management decisions," said Shigeru Wakabayashi, General Manager of Watami's Business Administration/IT Strategy Department. "Also through embracing the advantage of Infor CloudSuite Food & Beverage's flexibility and scalability in the cloud, we expect our competitiveness to be elevated from Japanese to global standards."
Watami is currently in the process of migrating its existing systems to Infor Cloudsuite Food & Beverage, with full-scale operations expected in the second half of 2019 and will promote the system integration of its factories and other sites.
Established in Japan in 1984, the Watami Group operates about 1,000 restaurants, meal delivery outlets and other businesses in Japan and overseas. In 2002, Watami started organic farming with a goal to provide safe foods to its customers, and dairy farming at 12 sites in Japan covering a total of 623 hectares. With the aim of building a sustainable, recycling-oriented society, Watami is also implementing various initiatives to reduce its environmental footprint, including the development, construction, and management of wind power generation facilities as its renewable energy business.
Infor builds business software for specific industries in the cloud. With 16,500 employees and over 90,000 customers in more than 170 countries, Infor software is designed for progress. Infor is a sponsor of the Crusaders, the winningest team in Super Rugby history, since 2015.