Phillips-Van Heusen, the world's largest shirt company, is using JDA Portfolio applications to help increase its in-stock position and improve sales markdowns.

The company, whose brands include Van Heusen, Calvin Klein, Izod and Arrow, previously used JDA's Advanced Planning by Arthur application and has now added the Advanced Allocation by Arthur and Performance Analysis by Arthur products to sharpen operations across all its divisions.

"By using Arthur applications we've been able to increase our in-stock rate from the low 90% range - which was about the best we could do in the past - to closer to 97% today with no significant increase in inventory whatsoever," said Jim Buehler, vice president of planning and allocation for the Van Heusen division of Phillips-Van Heusen.

"In some cases," Buehler added, "we've even reduced inventory and had a better in-stock position on the basics."

According to Buehler, Phillips-Van Heusen has improved its inventory position at a very detailed level.

"We had a major push to improve our position beyond item and class to the size level," he said. "Now we are doing size forecasting for basic stock merchandise and pre-pack optimisation for fashion apparel.

"This combination has significantly contributed to our sales markdown improvements and has clearly improved our sales and margins in recent years."