Based on its recent analysis of product lifecycle management (PLM) software for the retail, apparel, and fashion industries, Frost & Sullivan recognizes Centric Software with the 2016 Global Customer Value Leadership Award. Centric Software's flagship Centric 8 Platform boasts innovative technology capabilities couched in a simple design, enabling collaboration across every division in the value chain. The solution provides customers with better visibility into their products and helps them swiftly plan new product launches and coordinate activities among departments in different locations. This advantage is significant in the retail, apparel, and fashion industries, where end-user preferences are constantly changing.

Identifying the need for a holistic PLM platform for the complex retail industry, Centric Software developed the Centric 8 Platform to combine information from each stage of the product cycle, from ideation through planning, designing, material management and sourcing to delivery management. This product's success led to the introduction of a similar product called Centric SMB in 2015.

Centric SMB was developed to support the growing number of small-scale businesses in the retail and brand markets, which are often hesitant to adopt PLM solutions because of their high costs. To ease the decision-making process, Centric SMB leverages the cloud-based capability to create a common platform that can aid in merchandise planning, product specifications, material management, calendar management, quality management, and product sourcing.

"Significantly, both Centric 8 and Centric SMB were the first PLM solutions to offer mobile applications. The recent addition of field testing, fit review, retail review, and factory audit features further simplified the acquisition of live business intelligence data and refined search functions," said Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Kiravani E. "These value additions clearly showcase Centric's customer-centricity, where advanced technologies are deployed without most of the attendant complexities."

Another distinctive quality of Centric Software is its commitment to upgrade continuously the product attributes that enrich the customer experience. For instance, while traditional PLMs typically take more than 12 months for installation, configuration, and customization, Centric Software's solution needs only 3 to 5 months for enterprise deployment or even just a few weeks for SMB go-live. In addition, the solution allows customers to choose their software update features by adopting an agile deployment approach based on a virtuous iteration cycle, accelerating return on PLM investment.

In a dynamic end-user industry where automation providers are chosen based on their ability to fulfill specific customer objectives, Centric Software has succeeded in making its customers operational and successful. The company slashes the time-to-market by more than 20% and, most importantly, improves profit margins by 5 to 10%.

"Centric closely associates with customers by meticulously measuring its brand performance using a key metric called customer referencability," noted Kiravani E. "The latest results reveal that 98% of customers have had a positive experience and indicated that they would refer the company's solutions."

Centric Software has achieved more than a 70% growth rate for the fourth consecutive year, and its brand and retailers now number more than 300. In addition, the company expanded its geographic footprint from North America and Europe to South America and Asia. Centric Software is the undisputed leader in the Chinese market and will soon enter the Indian and Middle Eastern markets as well.

Overall, Centric Software's simple operation, faster time-to-market, and rapid return on investment make it truly deserving of the 2016 Global Customer Value Leadership Award.

Each year, Frost & Sullivan presents this award to the company that has demonstrated excellence in implementing strategies that proactively create value for its customers, with a focus on improving the return on the investment that a customer makes in its services or products. The award recognizes the company's inordinate focus on augmenting the value that its customers receive, beyond simply good customer service, leading to superior customer retention and, ultimately, customer base expansion.

Frost & Sullivan Best Practices awards recognize companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis, and extensive secondary research to identify best practices in the industry.