Lectra Systèmes and Tecmath have signed a Letter of Intent to enter into an exclusive worldwide strategic partnership whereby the two companies will jointly develop and market integrated body measurement solutions for mass customization under the common brand 'Lectra-Tecmath Body Measurement Technology'.

The two companies share a common vision that mass customization represents a paradigm shift for apparel and fashion related industries since ever-changing trends, the growing need for individuality, and increasing product variety all present new challenges that require new technologies as well as innovative strategies.

Combining body measurement solutions with CAD/CAM virtual reality and Internet technologies is expected to bring benefits throughout the supply chain. For example, apparel retailers should be able to minimize their overheads by eliminating the pre-order risk and inventory costs and increasing their customers' satisfaction through personalized and/or tailor-made garments. Manufacturers, in the other hand, will be able to produce on-demand, and therefore reduce the risk of investment and inventory. Designers, too, can offer a larger variety of styles and combinations.

The Lectra-Tecmath partnership will open up a number of opportunities, including immediate joint actions and product offerings, as well as longer term projects for which the companies have decided to co-ordinate their research, development, marketing, sales and services organizations to provide comprehensive and integrated solutions based on a common technology platform.

Lectra will market, sell and service these integrated solutions on an exclusive basis
Worldwide, while Lectra and Tecmath will both market, sell and service the Tecmath body measurement solutions in Germany and the Benelux.

Introduced at the IMB 2000 international trade fair which took place last week (30 May-3 June) in Cologne, Germany, was the first of these developments: an integrated body measurement and mass customization solution that extends from the retail store to the cutting room and integrates Tecmath's Vitus Smart 3D body scanner with Lectra's FitNet mass customization solution.

Lectra Systèmes, founded in 1973 and based in France is a world leader in computer-aided design and manufacturing (CAD/CAM) for the apparel, textiles, footwear, leather goods, luggage and upholstery industries, as well as the automotive and aerospace industries. Today the Lectra Group has a global technology offering geared to the needs of all players in the fashion industries, from virtual design to Internet merchandising, via textile digital printing and automated manufacturing processes. With a worldwide workforce of 1,500, Lectra Systèmes generates 88% of its sales outside France, thanks to an international network of 38 subsidiaries and 78 offices, serving nearly 10,000 customers in more than 100 countries. The group recorded in 1999 revenues of EUR 200 million, and net income of EUR 14 million. Lectra Systèmes' shares are listed on the Second Marché of the Paris Stock Exchange and are part of the SBF 250, Midcac and Second Marché indexes.

Tecmath, founded in 1986 and based in Germany, is an international software company focusing on the fields of human modeling, digital media and electronic commerce sectors. The Human Solutions division is specialized in man modeling, ergonomic simulation and automatic body measurement. Tecmath is a world leader in ergonomic simulation of human beings in the automotive industry. The company has been actively involved in the field of clothing since 1995, providing 2D and 3D scanners and front-end solutions for retail, and process orientated technologies. Today more than 150 2D and 3D body scanners of Tecmath are used by retailers, armies and research institutes in the field of mass customization and clothing. The company recorded in 1999 revenues of EUR 9.2 million and a net income of EUR 70,000, and currently employs 126 highly qualified people.