VF Corporation (NYSE: VFC), the world's largest apparel company, announced today that it has successfully implemented the first phase of the SAP Apparel Footwear Solution (AFS) in its domestic jeanswear operation. AFS is a unique and comprehensive industry-specific enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that simplifies the way companies plan, process, track and ship products.

The procurement, materials management, production planning and finance components of SAP went "live" on February 4, 2000 in VF's Jeanswear coalition, and marks the first successful large scale implementation of an apparel- specific SAP solution. "This is another important milestone in our continuing roll out of a sophisticated suite of common systems throughout all VF businesses," said Mackey McDonald, VF chairman and chief executive officer. VF's common systems platform includes SAP as its ERP solution; Logility in sales planning and forecasting; i2 Technologies' Supply Chain Planning software in production planning; Gerber's WebPDM in product development; and new processes to improve its Retail Floor Space Management capabilities. Recently, VF's Vanity Fair Intimates announced the kickoff of its common systems implementation project, which will include all common systems components. VF plans to extend SAP AFS to its other business as well.

"Three years ago, we identified SAP as a partner who could help us design a real time interactive supply chain solution specific to our needs as an apparel manufacturer," said Mr. McDonald. "Now, with their help, we have been able to create a world class ERP platform that will streamline our internal ordering, tracking, shipment and goods fulfillment, and achieve operational efficiencies throughout our system.

As one of the first apparel companies to implement ERP processes we are committed to further establishing it as a standard throughout each of our domestic businesses."

Internal Benefits

SAP AFS controls the systems that comprise the informational backbone of the supply chain, including: financial, master data, inventory management, costing, procurement, and planning. Since its February launch, SAP has benefited a myriad of Jeanswear processes affected by these supply chain systems:
  • Merchandising: SAP provides merchandising information at greater levels of detail and accuracy. The data is much more accessible and integrated, and should result in lower costs and faster development cycle times;
  • Planning: SAP provides new tools that allow for rapid planning of allocations at rates that are twice those achieved previously;
  • Purchasing: Because SAP allows employees to access purchasing information with improved speed and accuracy, the new system provides managers with both the time and knowledge necessary to proactively service customers;
  • Manufacturing: Material inventory reports are easier to access and far more accurate than those provided by the old processes. Additionally, SAP has modernized manual inventory methods, saving time and reducing human error;
  • Office Administration: The system has designed an audit trail that allows employees to access the details of any transaction, and therefore respond to customer requests and queries. Moreover, the audit information is transferable to any employee on the system;
  • Financial: SAP provides critical financial information on a much more timely basis directly to the users' desktop. Inquiries can be customized to the users' needs when they request a report. The result is significant process improvement allowing online budget preparation, expense monitoring, and daily reporting of sales and margin activity from a brand level to an individual product line.
"The extension of the SAP solution into additional coalitions will allow VF to achieve, on a corporate scale, what its Jeanswear unit has been benefiting from for over two months," said Rick Freitas, VP of Field Operations, SAP. "All of VF will now have easy access to detailed and accurate data that will reduce time and costs while proactively meeting both customer and consumer needs. Simply put, never before has our industry seen a more successful implementation of this size and scope," continued Mr. Freitas.

About VF Corporation

VF Corporation is the world's largest apparel company and a leader in jeanswear, intimate apparel, workwear, knitwear, playwear, daypacks and swimwear. Its principal brands include Lee, Wrangler, Riders, Rustler, Vanity Fair, Vassarette, Bestform, Lily of France, Lee Sport, Healthtex, Jantzen, JanSport and Red Kap. Its international intimate apparel brands include Lou, Bolero, Variance, Carina, Siltex, Belcor, Gemma and Intima Cherry. VF Corporation's press releases, annual report and other information can be accessed through the Company's home page on the World Wide Web, http://www.vfc.com. Shareholders can also utilize a toll-free number to obtain information and updates on the Company, 888-VF-NEWS1.

About SAP

As the market leader of inter-enterprise software solutions, SAP is leveraging its strength in industry-focused business software and the world's largest enterprise software customer base to deliver mySAP.com. mySAP.com provides an open collaborative business environment of personalized solutions on demand. This enables companies of all sizes and industries to fully engage their employees, customers and partners to capitalize upon the new Internet economy. mySAP.com allows people to harness the power of the Internet to work smarter, better and faster by optimizing supply chains, managing strategic relationships, reducing time to market, sharing virtual information and increasing productivity and shareholder value. SAP is listed on several exchanges including the Frankfurt stock exchange and NYSE under the symbol "SAP." The SAP World Wide Web site can be found at http://www.sap.com.