c07-customer-stories

Ace Hardware

Ace Hardware is a leading hardware wholesaler and retailer, stocking more than 4,800 independently owned and company-owned hardware stores in all 50 US states and more than 72 countries.

“Informatica has given us a robust and consistent platform to manage the flow of data into and out of our analytic infrastructure. In addition, we have solved other data movement problems with Informatica. Whenever we have a data integration opportunity, our first thought is now Informatica.”

— Mark Cothron, Data Warehouse Architect, Ace Hardware

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Business Need

To sustain its leadership as a ‘service-based, high-touch, local hardware business’ and strengthen its dominance in the convenience segment of the retail home improvement market, Ace needed to transform the timeliness, breadth and quality of its retail reporting.

Increase the amount and quality of product content available to its retailers. This would allow them to better search, evaluate and order hardware products, and give them the product knowledge needed to deliver a consistent, personalized shopping experience.

Analyze point-of-sale (POS) data in real-time across all 4,800 locally-owned stores.

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Challenges

Ace tracked which products retailers ordered, when they were ordered and shipped. However, the company could not track or forecast actual sales.

Data used for reporting was up to a one-week old, owing to performance and data cleansing issues.

Requirement to integrate wholesale and inventory data with POS data to help drive key business decisions, improve category management, lower inventory costs and optimize pricing.

Reliance on custom coding to integrate POS data was excessively resource intensive and led to major performance constraints.

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Solutions & Results

Informatica integrates critical POS data from 1,500 retail locations with its wholesale and inventory systems for strategic analysis by sales, marketing, and pricing managers.

Increased profit margins and pricing structures. E.g. if a store sells a hammer for $3.99, but other stores sell it at $4.99, a recommendation is sent to the region to standardize on the higher price.

Real time POS analysis enables Ace to replenish inventory systems and in-store stock more quickly, reducing inventory holding costs.

Enabled Ace to target customers more effectively by analyzing historical buying habits detecting trends.

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Technologies Used

Informatica PowerCenter

Accesses, integrates, and delivers any and all data quickly and cost-effectively, without hand coding.

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