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“Slim4 has guaranteed the availability of the stock while allowing us to improve stock turn by 15%.”

Mark Hoppenbrouwers

Supply chain director | Rituals


Rituals strengthen its supply chain to enable growth to 1,000 stores

Home and Body Cosmetics ‘brand’ Rituals, whose slogan is ‘luxury cosmetics at affordable prices’, has a clear goal: to grow to 1,000 stores and 1,000 shop-in-shops worldwide. “The rapidly growing number of locations in conjunction with a rapidly growing range requires a very robust supply chain,” said Supply Chain Director Mark Hoppenbrouwers.

“We are an innovative company and looked long and hard for a system that would enable us to accurately introduce new products into the range whilst also keeping a tight control of the products once they become established. Slim4 proved crucial in solving this dilemma for us.”

Rituals initially started selling luxury hampers and now Rituals sells hundreds of articles throughout the world. Besides the annual opening of dozens of new stores the growth is in shop-in-shop concepts within luxury department stores. “The complexity of this formula is compounded by the growing number of suppliers and the rapid range expansion and globalisation. Prior to Slim4, this growth had always produced a negative effect on stock turn.”

Better Service, less stock

In 2008, a year of explosive growth for Rituals, the previously experienced supply chain bottlenecks were not seen; this has been attributed to the focus that was brought about following the implementation of Slim4, the inventory optimisation system provided by Slimstock. The Slim4 implementation allowed for the stock to be purchased from a central location. “This implementation has laid the foundations that have allowed us to plan towards our 1,000 store growth strategy. The strengthening of our supply chain has also resulted in a service level increase from 92% to 97% and a reduction of logistics costs as a percentage of sales. Slim4 has guaranteed the availability of the stock to the desired level; in addition our stock turn has improved by 15%. This is in spite of a range growth of 20%,” says Hoppenbrouwers.

Promotions & gift packs

Using Bill of Materials functionality within Slim4, Rituals is also able to manage the production of the gift packs in order that all components of the respective pack are received in time to build and meet demand. “The beauty of Slim4 is the ability to work with a combination of daily, weekly and monthly tasks and also the flexibility that allows us to monitor each product on an individual basis. In addition to the promotional articles, Slim4 is also able to manage our new product introductions and the phasing out of old products.”

More time for the customers

Rituals determines the service level that it requires (per product) and then sends its suppliers monthly forecasts based on the order advice provided by Slim4. “Rituals are laying the foundations which will allow us to use Slim4 to centrally control all of the store replenishment”, says Hoppenbrouwers. “Slim4 will calculate the optimal stock per store and will automatically place orders on the DC. The increase in service levels and the corresponding increase in sales at each store are largely due to the reduction in planning hours at the store. Implementation of Slim4 has also allowed our staff to have more time with our customers!”

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