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PFD Food Services Goes Live with Complexica's Decision Cloud® for AI-driven Demand Planning and Replenishment Optimization

17 October 2022

Complexica Pty Ltd, a leading provider of Artificial Intelligence software for supply & demand optimization, announced today that PFD Food Services has gone live with its Decision Cloud® software platform for automating and optimising demand planning and replenishment activities. The cloud-based application has been deployed as an integrated AI-driven platform for the optimization and replenishment of tens of thousands of products across 70 warehouses. The deployment allows PFD to replace its legacy demand & replenishment planning system and further extend its use of Complexica’s Decision Cloud® platform across the business.

“PFD is Australia's largest privately-owned food services company, servicing a long tail of customers with an extensive product range, which results in an inherently complex operation,” said Richard Cohen, Chief Information Officer of PFD Food Services. “The deployment of Complexica’s Decision Cloud® for demand planning and replenishment optimization allows us to improve forecast accuracy, reduce stockouts and excess inventory, as well as reduce the manual effort involved in replenishing stock. This implementation at PFD follows a number of other successful Complexica deployments, including the national rollout of Complexica’s CRM, Customer Opportunity Profiler (COP), & Order Management System (OMS) in 2019, which is now the core technology used by PFD’s in-field sales team for call planning, quoting & ordering, and managing customer interactions.”

Demand_Planner_ComplexicaPFD is Australia's largest privately-owned food services company, distributing food products and related consumables to restaurants, hotels, and commercial kitchens throughout the country. With more than 2400 employees, 70 strategically located warehouses, and annual turnover of approximately AUD $2.0 billion, PFD's distribution network services the entire Australian population. For more information about PFD, please visit: www.PFDFoods.com.au

“An ongoing challenge for any modern-day demand and replenishment planner is improving the accuracy of demand forecasts. Besides the algorithmic challenge of minimising the forecast error, there’s also the challenge of understanding and optimising the trade-off between working capital costs and service levels to customers,” said Matt Michalewicz, CEO of Complexica. “These challenges are particularly pronounced in food services, where products are perishable, limited by warehouse capacities, and influenced by a variety of external demand drivers. To address these challenges, Complexica’s Decision Cloud® is based on the latest algorithmic advancements in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, and will enable PFD to order the right stock, at the right place, at the right time. Given our long-standing relationship with PFD, we look forward to embarking on this project to drive business value and tangible outcomes for their national operation."

Based on advanced Artificial Intelligence methods such as Deep Learning, Complexica's Decision Cloud® moves demand planning away from an anecdotal and “gut feel” approach, to a data-driven and market intelligence capability that:

  • Reduces the forecast error associated with demand planning
  • Increases DIFOT and service levels to customers
  • Improve stock turns and decreases overall inventory levels
  • Improves reaction time and response to unexpected events (e.g. sudden change in demand requiring additional inventory)
  • Automates manual processes to eliminate human error and key man risk
  • Allows for understanding of the impact of changes in business rules and constraints (such as lead times, capacity constraints, required inventory levels, etc.)
  • Replaces home-grown spreadsheets, which are often opaque and convoluted

Decision Cloud® simplifies and automates the manual processes associated with replenishment planning, as well as generates optimized buying recommendations across various time periods to reduce working capital requirements while maximizing service levels and fill rates.

Topics: Artificial Intelligence, demand planning, Inventory Optimization, Replenishment Planning, PFD Foods

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