Liberty Richter is the global importing, sourcing and distribution arm of $2bn Tree of Life, the largest marketer of natural and specialty foods in North America. It manages small premium gourmet food brands for both large and small companies. Its clients include some of the best and largest food companies in the world, including Land O'Lakes, Arnotts, Harmony Farms, Rella and many more.
Liberty Richter's success rests on its ability to efficiently source products from all over the world, move them to market quickly at the lowest total landed cost - and to provide highly detailed cost and profit data to its customer companies. To help it in this mission, Liberty Richter has used Blinco Systems' 3rdwave global sourcing and trade management solution since 1998.
"3rdwave allows us to hold our competitive advantage against larger rivals," says John McLennan III, Liberty Richter's vice president of finance, who adds that the application's constantly expanding functionality has supported Liberty Richter's growth and has enabled the company to become much more efficient and profitable.
"Our sales have doubled without increasing back-office headcount for customer service, purchasing, logistics, information systems and finance," says McLennan, adding that many departments within the company use the application as their primary system.
Purchasing uses the system to source product from the vendor that can provide the lowest landed cost in the timeframe required. Marketing uses the same costing output to determine product pricing. Traffic and transportation uses 3rdwave to route the shipments, produce documents and provide data to Customs and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
"We have all the information immediately available to satisfy the FDA's new bioterrorism regulations," says McLennan.
Sales and customer service use the application to monitor inbound shipments and to deal with any exceptions to delivery times that a customer is expecting. Brand managers can obtain the detailed profit and loss reports that customer companies demand.
"As a finance guy, I like to see numbers that really tie together, and we always have this with 3rdwave," says McLennan. "The costing is truly activity-based, so it supports our profitability analyses from any perspective we require.
"The system also performs as a granular global data repository that provides real-time access to information that can be turned into detailed and accurate reports. And, we can make quicker business decisions and supply-chain analyses.
"At Liberty Richter, we pay constant attention to improving our business processes while optimally servicing our clients and customers," says McLennan. "Blinco Systems offers us depth of domain and consultative business experience. They effectively translate our business requirements into the 3rdwave solution, while increasing efficiencies for both us and our customers."
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