Value fashion retailer C&A Europe has invested in a retail-specific product lifecycle management (PLM) system to help shorten lead times and reduce costs in global product development.

The company will use the PTC FlexPLM solution to provide a single source of information for merchandisers, designers, developers, buyers and external production teams.

By improving collaboration and increasing the visibility of all product-related information across its global organisation and the supply chain, C&A expects the software to help shorten lead times and reduce development costs.

The retailer has over 1,575 stores across Europe and operations in Brazil, Mexico and China. Headquartered in Vilvoorde, Belgium, and Düsseldorf, Germany, its design and production sites are dispersed across the globe.

In product development, improved sample tracking and an accelerated first sample loop are among the anticipated benefits.

Eliminating previous legacy systems, including Excel spreadsheets and email, will improve data quality and allow for better order quality with suppliers. Further expected benefits include time efficiencies gained by disposing of the need to correct information and manually re-enter data.

C&A will use PTC's Cloud Services offering to manage and host the solution to reduce risk and strain on internal IT teams.

"We chose PTC's FlexPLM solution for its ease of use and broad set of capabilities, including its strong workflow support and the ability to get started quickly," says Andreas Reidick, head of function Buying Services and Operations Department (BSOD), C&A.

"The PTC Value Roadmap tool helped us clearly identify the link between improvements in our product development processes and our corporate objectives."

Earlier this year C&A revealed it would implement RFID across all of its 164 stores in France, together with full integration at its distribution centre, to streamline processes from point of manufacture through to point of sale. 

C&A rolls out RFID in France as base for omnichannel