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Inspired by trends in fashion and supported by state-of-the-art ERP software

International furniture designer and distributor speeds up their process with the total ERP solution by ABAS

Karlsruhe, Germany, July 24, 2013 — Everything except everyday — based on this philosophy KARE Design GmbH has grown from a small store selling shelving to an international furniture business. For more than 20 years the name KARE has been synonymous with extravagant furniture design. With abas Business Suite, KARE was able to package, ship and invoice goods as soon as the system went live. The average turnaround time for a customer order was reduced from ten days to two.

In 2010, KARE determined that their business software had reached its limits and could not support the faster delivery processing times they required. KARE began searching for new ERP software and after an intensive selection process, they chose abas Business Suite with ABAS Projektierung as their implementation partner.

The selection process

Before our current system we had a custom ERP system that we maintained and modified ourselves," states COO Michael Wolf, who joined KARE one year after the company was founded. "The old ERP system could no longer support our growth. A key trend in the furniture industry is towards quicker deliveries." A business consultancy was contracted to create a questionnaire and screen potential system providers. Wolf continues: "The decision was made in favor of abas Business Suite and ABAS Projektierung as their implementation partner. The reasons for our decision were the proximity of the provider to our headquarters, the personal contact we were able to establish with the eventual project manager, as well as the clearly defined and reliable implementation method. ABAS Projektierung didn't sell us ‘just’ software, they sold us an entire project."

The ERP implementation – on time and within budget

The ERP implementation project was led by a project manager from KARE and ABAS Projektierung. The abas implementation method allowed the project team to meet the goals within the established time and budget. COO Michael Wolf said of the project: "The fact that our employees had items to package in our warehouse on the first day of using our new ERP system and that invoices could be written for these items, was the greatest project success. Despite tight restraints, the project team met our schedule exactly and we even came out below the estimated budget."

Extreme flexibility – Shipping planning with abas Business Suite

Because of the large volume of goods accrued by the furniture distributor daily, KARE does not make order-based deliveries. For each delivery address there is a minimum order value; the goods for the customer are collected and only loaded after the minimum value is reached. At this point the shipping planning system within abas Business Suite takes over. The creation process is not simple. First, an availability check is performed for the product and the results are visualized using a traffic light system. KARE IT Developer Koch: "Shipping planning can be structured so that goods are picked based on the individual priorities of the customers. For example, a retailer who wants the furnishings for a display bunk can enter that directly into the ERP system. This requires extreme flexibility from our IT solution."

The value of innovative ERP – Eighty percent shorter delivery times

For Michael Wolf, COO of KARE, abas Business Suite demonstrates its greatest value when customers receive their goods faster: "Our retail stores can now directly trigger an order in our distribution department. Picking and shipping planning are started by automated processes. This has enabled us to reduce customer order turnaround times from ten days to two, meaning that an order placed today is delivered the day after tomorrow. This is an enormous improvement and an important step towards quicker living."

Looking ahead – DMS & BI

After their positive experience with the integration of the retail stores, KARE is now looking to go further. The next step is to integrate the retail store in Vienna, Austria, which is part KARE-owned retail store and part franchise. This store will act as a pilot program for other franchises. IT Developer Koch explains: "We want to develop a special solution for our franchises. First we want to use the fully integrated DMS and the BI tool in abas Business Suite. With it we can perform a wide range of evaluations in real time." Michael Wolf added: "The trend in our branch is clearly towards speed, and the key term is 'drop shipping'. For this we will create a high performance workplace in abas, with which we can reduce the time to deliver our products to the customer even further. Better living was yesterday, today our customers want 'better and especially quicker living.'"

About KARE

KARE was founded in the 1980s. Their flair for extravagant market trends has allowed the company to achieve constant growth. In addition to being a distributor, the group of companies has six retail and two discount stores. KARE has over 27,000 m2 of warehouse space and is represented by more than 50 franchises around the world. Each week, more than 4,000 pallets are sent from the company headquarters, near Munich, to hundreds of locations worldwide. The company has approximately 400 employees. Its uninterrupted growth is demonstrated by six stores in Munich, 55 brand stores in 37 countries, 100 shop-in-shop areas in German furniture outlets and design boutiques, together with thousands of retail customers worldwide.

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