European children's and maternity fashion retailer Orchestra has invested in a new product lifecycle management (PLM) solution to help optimise its product development process.

The company has selected PLM from Centric Software to optimise its own processes, in addition to streamlining collaboration throughout its extended supply chain including internal departments, suppliers and purchasing offices.

Established in 1995, Orchestra leads the European market in maternity wear as well as apparel and childcare products for children from birth to age 14. The company operates 700 stores in 40 countries and counts a turnover of EUR562m per year.

To keep pace with business growth, Orchestra recently embarked on a global overhaul of its information systems, including an ERP implementation. Questions about the product development process also arose, it says.

"We decided to look for a PLM specialist as this was the best approach for us and our IT strategy," says Virginie Llorca, director of Orchestra's supply chain, methods and organisation. "We wanted to do more than consolidate systems; we need a foundation to sustain our immediate, ongoing growth, but we also required a solution that is resilient and flexible enough to change along with our goals.

"Centric's quality module will also give us greater control over the quality of finished goods," adds Llorca. "And with much improved transparency in our supplier relationships, our teams will have greater confidence in the decisions they make throughout the sourcing process."