FRAMINGHAM, Mass., Gerry Weber International AG, the Germany-based manufacturer and retailer of women's fashion, was recently recognized by RFID Journal for the 2011 Best RFID Implementation, a successful end-to-end solution facilitated by Avery Dennison.
"The Gerry Weber RFID deployment is one of the most extensive to date. It uses RFID in several applications - inventory management and theft reduction - and in many locations through the supply chain," explained RFID Journal Editor Mark Roberti. "RFID Journal was pleased to recognize this deployment with the RFID Journal Award in 2011, particularly since Gerry Weber is blazing the trail for other retailers."
Gerry Weber's RFID-based electronic article surveillance solution is the first such retail commercialized application. Avery Dennison's proprietary label and inlay design is incorporated into a care label that makes it possible to trace garments from production to point of sale. Avery Dennison partners with Gerry Weber to transmit orders containing care data and EPC numbers to one of Avery's worldwide printing facilities nearest to the Gerry Weber's 240 manufacturing sites. Avery prints the labels, encodes the label/inlays and delivers them to the supplier.
"Thanks to Avery Dennison, there are no extra steps or costs for our manufacturers. As a result, we were able to roll out RFID to all of our manufacturers in just three months," explained Gerry Weber CIO Christian von Grone. The RFID tag data is also transmitted to Gerry Weber's transport and logistics partners and 200 HOUSES OF GERRY WEBER stores in Germany. With the built-in EAS, the logistics providers no longer need to attach hard plastic EAS tags to deter theft, which, von Grone says, is an immediate savings of about EUR 0.35 per item.
"Avery Dennison is proud to have contributed to Gerry Weber's receipt of this well-deserved RFID Implementation Award," said Deon Stander, Vice President and General Manager - Global Commercial at Avery Dennison. "Given the multi-dimensional aspect of the Gerry Weber business as both retailer and manufacturer, we hope their success helps others realize the end-to-end solution benefits that can be achieved with RFID technology today."
Additional benefits of the Gerry Weber RFID deployment were improved inventory management with stores doing full inventory in approximately 30 minutes weekly versus once annually. "This is the biggest benefit driver. Higher turnover means being able to sell items at full price rather than marking them down just to get them off the floor," explained von Grone.
Gerry Weber expects to realize a return on its investment within two years and is looking to further changes, including working with its 2000 retail customers. Von Grone said his goal is to continue working with Avery Dennison and other partners to make retailers more successful by easing replenishment and improving customer satisfaction with Gerry Weber clothes.