Many of today’s strongest B2B service innovators have focused on how small- and medium-sized businesses can utilize their tools to successfully compete in a global market. But Woolworths, Australia’s largest retailer, has revealed that these tools remain just as prevalent for large corporations as well.
The company announced Tuesday (March 3) that it has chosen TradeStone’s Merchandise Lifecycle Management platform to manage its supply chain that connects more than 6,000 suppliers with its more than 3,200 retail locations across Australia and New Zealand.
TradeStone offers a platform for businesses to manage supplies and orders, B2B sales and financing, among other services. According to Woolworths, its Product Lifecycle Management System built on TradeStone’s platform will support more than 20,000 users involved in its supply chain, including its overseas procurement operations.
The efforts, the retail giant said, is part of a plan to streamline its supply chain management. “We are working collaboratively across all divisions within Woolworths to get to a single product development system,” said Woolworths’ Group Commercial Director Carl Hargrave, adding that TradeStone offers “efficiencies, ease-of-use and consistency” that were most attractive for the company.
TradeStone President Brian Marsden agreed that the platform aims to offer simplistic solutions as B2B firms are challenged to oversee their entire global operations. “Increasingly, retailers must manage complex global supplier communities whilst simultaneously expanding product offerings and brand banners to achieve customer growth,” he said. “Woolworths has taken a world-class approach by enabling a single platform across all divisions and product categories and they are a leader when it comes to managing local and international sourcing.”
The TradeStone platform will manage Woolworths’ array of products, including food and liquor, general merchandise, petrol, fashion and home improvement.
Woolworths’ decision to use TradeStone services to manage its supply chain follows reports last September that the company would look to overhaul its supply chain entirely. The company revealed a $1 billion program named Mercury II to cut product transportation costs and boost the use of technology.
At the time, a Credit Suisse analyst predicted that Woolworths would aim to expand its market share in non-food industries “by integrating supply chains and systems in food, liquor and general merchandise.”