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SAP Sapphire: 99 Cents Only, Adidas leverage SAP solutions for data access


Commerce, Calif. and Herzogenaurach, Germany — At the recent SAP Sapphire 2014 conference, 99 Cents Only Stores and Adidas AG both detailed how they are using different SAP solutions in different ways for the same ultimate goal – increased accessibility and transparency of data.

99 Cents Only is in the midst of an ongoing SAP enterprise rollout, in partnership with PricewaterhouseCoopers and Tata Consultancy Services, that began with a switchover of its POS and merchandise management software to SAP modules in 2010. This allowed the retailer to combine master merchandise data with core transaction data on a single platform, easing price changes and allowing more flexible margin growth.

“Our true vision is integrating ERP with financials,” Dan Dobson, director of business portfolio planning 99 Cents Only, told the audience at a Sapphire session.

To that end, 99 Cents Only is in the process of rolling out core merchandising, inventory management, and finance applications from SAP. Ultimately, the retailer intends to send sales data from its 2 billion annual transactions through the SAP POS Data Management application to the cloud-based SAP HANA analytical platform.

“Once we’re live in the back office, the stress will be in uploading physical inventory information from the stores,” said Dobson. “We will have to either update employee handhelds or retrofit the existing hardware to work with SAP.”

In another session, Kai Bienmuller, manager Adidas Group, explained how his company is upgrading from the SAP Apparel Footwear Solution (AFS) to the new SAP Fashion Management Solution (FMS). FMS is a vertical wholesale, manufacturing and retail solution that aims to bring all business operations onto a single platform powered by SAP Hana, initially announced in January 2014.

“Consumers want anything, anytime, as soon as possible,” said Bienmuller. “We want to go to an individualized approach. We want to plan around seasons, away from batch processing to real-time allocation.”

Adidas will roll out one instance of FMS for the wholesale and retail operations of its Adidas and Reebok brands in 70% of markets where it does business in the next two-and-a-half years.

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