Mystery Ranch, the Montana-based backpack company that makes packs for both military and consumer markets, has selected Centric Software to provide its Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) solution. Centric Software provides the most innovative enterprise solutions to fashion, retail, footwear, outdoor, luxury and consumer goods companies to achieve strategic and operational digital transformation goals.

Mystery Ranch was founded in 2000 by Dana Gleason and Renee Sippel-Baker, who have worked together in backpack design and manufacturing since 1978. With a focus on comfort, function, durability and quality, Mystery Ranch makes packs and load carriage systems for military, hunting, wildland fire and mountaineering customers. Mystery Ranch is based in Bozeman, Montana, and is a global brand with worldwide production and distribution.

Mystery Ranch is a growing business that sells its core product, bags and backpacks, to several different professional and consumer markets. As Luke Boswell, Head of Product at Mystery Ranch says, the company needed a PLM system that could streamline and handle a wide variety of types of product data.

"We had an older PLM system, but it wasn't doing everything we wanted," says Boswell. "In particular, it wasn't capable of outputting the entirety of a product package - it was very Bill of Materials (BOM) oriented. Our tech packs and product documentation are extensive because everything is put together and finalized in-house before the complete specification package is sent out to start pre-production prototyping. We have an in-house manufacturing facility in Bozeman as well as contract manufacturers in Asia, and we need a PLM solution with the flexibility to handle the different ways we work with manufacturers."

After a selection process in which several PLM vendors were considered, Mystery Ranch selected Centric PLM.

As Boswell explains, "The reason we chose Centric is pretty simple - we didn't see another PLM system capable of such a diverse array of uses. Centric has solutions to a lot of the problems a soft goods business faces, from the creation of an early design concept on downwards to costing structures, planning elements, quality control and assurance capabilities. It intuits a lot of challenges we have in terms of sharing information across the organization and makes it possible to output product packages with full sets of relevant data."

Boswell notes that Centric PLM will be integrated with the company's existing ERP system and that Mystery Ranch is looking forward to implementing a solution that is flexible enough to grow with the business.

"Throughout the demo process we were consistently impressed by the solutions Centric already had for problems where we previously had to build customized solutions," says Boswell. "That out of the box functionality, along with Centric's simple user interface, will allow us to save time, energy and resources. Part of the reason we chose Centric is that it allows us a lot of room to grow, particularly when it comes to updates and new features. Centric listens well to their customers and their solution is an evolving tool that will evolve with us as we grow."

"We would like to welcome Mystery Ranch on board, who has selected Centric PLM to support their continued success as a backpack maker for a variety of markets," says Chris Groves, President and CEO of Centric Software, "We look forward to partnering with them now and as they evolve in the future."