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RFID-based Inventory Tracking System Rolled Out for Apparel Industry

After two years of trialing and then deploying an inventory-tracking RFID system for a large European apparel retailer, sister companies IER and SDV are now marketing a solution based on that deployment. The offering, known as iD by SDV, combines SDV's software and logistics services with IER's RFID tags and readers, enabling users to track goods from the point of manufacture to the point of sale.

The European retailer deployed the original solution to track inventory at hundreds of its stores worldwide, according to Béatrice Piau, SDV's marketing manager. The next phase, she says, will be to expand the system to include reader portals at a distribution center, and thereby monitor products from that warehouse to the stores. In the meantime, iD by SDV is being trialed by other retailers.

SDV and IER are owned by French investment and industrial holding firm Bolloré Group. SDV is a supply chain management company focused on such industries as retail, aerospace, food, health care, and oil and gas. IER makes RFID hardware and other electronic products at two manufacturing facilities in France, targeting use cases such as air and public transportation, as well as logistics, access control and retail. At one French manufacturing facility, IER creates tags, while at another it produces RFID readers and RFID printer-encoders, along with non-RFID printers. IER began working in the RFID space approximately 10 years ago, says Talel Hatira, the firm's RFID solutions sales manager. Initially, the company focused on RFID tag use in the airline industry, but it began developing technology for the retail sector about five years ago.

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