Today, Lancaster produces 1.5 million products per year and enjoys a global presence in 60 countries through 1,000 stores.

Making that passion for leather and that sense of Parisian style available further afield represented a challenge for Tony Jean Rose, PLM Project Manager, and the design and development teams at Lancaster's Paris headquarters. "To achieve our objective of exponential growth, particularly in Asia and the USA, we needed to simplify our processes in line with best practices, improve supply chain collaboration, and find opportunities to synergize sourcing between the Sequoia and Lancaster brands," explains Rose.

To support that multi-national, multi-brand perspective on collection and product development, Lancaster began a comprehensive PLM selection process, employing the services of an independent advisor in order to select the best possible partner.

"We wanted to reach multiple markets more quickly - all without compromising quality, affordability, or the essential identity of the brand," says Rose.

Following an exhaustive RFQ and demonstration process, Centric 8 PLM was selected on the strength of its flexibility, functionality, and ease of use.

Also important was Centric's first-hand experience of the intricacies and idiosyncrasies of the industry. "Centric has an impressive reputation in the luxury sector," Rose continues. "Its consultants and developers understand the demand for continuous evolution, from one collection to the next. By challenging Centric we challenged ourselves and we discovered an opportunity to benefit from their experience. In parallel with implementing the Centric 8 PLM platform, we now intend to re-organize our processes to take advantage of their teams' expertise."

In addition to better connecting with suppliers, Lancaster will also empower its designers and developers with key applications from Centric's mobile suite, such as Capture it, Material Sample and Product Notes on Android, allowing users to quickly create a collaborative and contemporaneous source of images and other product data.

"Making the most of PLM involves more than just reducing defects, slimming cycle times and establishing leaner processes," says Chris Groves, Centric Software CEO. "Lancaster will be able to secure its reputation for affordable luxury through proven practices, as well as laying the technological foundations for growth without compromise."