In vino veritas: Inventory Optimisation in Wine Trading

Jul 2, 2015 2 min

German Wine Company WIV Wein International AG Implements RELEX SCM Software

WIV Wein International AG, the Burg Layen, Rhineland-Palatinate, based wine distributor, has chosen RELEX to streamline supply chain management across its multi-channel operations. The company sells wine to 19 countries worldwide via direct sales, wholesale, retail and e-commerce.

Using RELEX’s automatic replenishment and system support for campaign management, WIV aims to increase availability and stock turnover while minimising capital tied-up in inventory.

The flexibility of the RELEX solution played a major part in WIV’s decision: The system allows different supply chain scenarios to be compared across the various sales channels. For these calculations the software uses more than 3,000 combinations of different forecasts models and parameters. These include, among others, stock turnover patterns, seasonal effects, minimum order quantities, and freight-free limits. RELEX retrieves this data from WIV’s ERP system. Based on daily forecasts, the software assembles automated order proposals. In order to optimise total costs, RELEX’s SCM software automatically factors in additional delivery costs for each order proposal.

“Implementing the RELEX software will revolutionise our entire supply chain.”

“Implementing the RELEX software will revolutionise our entire supply chain,” says Andreas Spies, Head of Central Purchasing at WIV. “Lean, efficient planning and buying processes will help us cut our inventory levels while simultaneously improving our delivery capability.“

RELEX’s accurate forecasts enable WIV to deliver products to the right place on time and in the optimum quantity, while avoiding additional shipping costs. The automatic store replenishment at its retail subsidiary Vino-Weine und Ideen GmbH reduces the workload of WIV employees and allows them to focus on their core skills.
The system also accounts for sector-specific characteristics, for example by distinguishing between those wines bottled by WIV and those from other producers.

Another crucial advantage is the system’s processing performance, which allows forecasts to be calculated in real time. Data from WIV’s ERP system is saved to RELEX’s proprietary database, whose columnar layout allows for extreme compression of millions of such data sets. This way data can be held ‘In-memory’, which allows results to be produced from big data sets as much as 100 times faster than rival systems. This gives a decisive time advantage that speeds up WIV’s decision making processes.