Westcoast take control of their product data to expand their ever growing product range
Westcoast have been operational for 35+ years and have 2.5 billionrevenue. Based in the UK, the company’s distributor arm, Westcoast Limited, is a well-known dealer of major IT brands to office product merchants and retailers throughout the UK and further afield. This includes high-profile brands like Apple, Microsoft, Lenovo, Hewlett-Packard, as well as Hewlett-Packard-Enterprise.
Today, the company employs 1600+ individuals throughout the UK, Ireland and Europe. It has gained a reputation as being one of the most efficient and trustworthy IT vendors throughout these territories.
Supporting Multiple eCommerce Stores and Expanding Internationally
The company was using a middleware solution that was provided by their web team. This worked as an internal Content Delivery Network (CDN) and blended general ERP with mandatory attributes.This middleware was pushed out to the product team, ultimately leading to technical debt. When Westcoast outgrew the system, they found themselves without support or resources in this area. Therefore, a more centralised system that was easier to use was required.
The increase in efficiency through utilisingPimberly’s core functionality has helped Westcoast launch and support four online stores with rich eCommerce content. These stores include Westcoast UK, Westcoast France, Computer Centre, and a Mercato Device as a Service (DaaS).
For an ambitious company like Westcoast, international expansion was always on the horizon. With Pimberly’s easy to use channel and locale setup, they were able to launch Westcoast France in a matter of months – half the time than originally planned.
Everything starts with a SKU. Without the setup and stewardship that Pimberly provides, we wouldn’t be able to do what we do today as quickly.
Chris Meredith, CRM Manager
The Power of Agility
Finding the correct information from disparate sources was a slow process and reduced the ability to launch new products quickly. This slow time to market had a dramatic impact on Westcoast’s competitive edge.
By connecting supplier, manufacturer and data feeds as well as managing the product completeness through Pimberly lifecycles, Westcoast were able to streamline their product launches.Now Westcoast can launch a product within three days rather than weeks, as it had previously taken before implementing Pimberly. Quicker speed to market means that they can release products before competitors, gaining vital extra selling days.
As the company and our expectations grew, we knew we needed a standalone PIM platform that wasn’t driven by internal web developers so we could remain competitive.
Effortless Data Management
Westcoast was struggling to keep up with the amount of stock-keeping units (SKUs) that were being set up every day. In a given month, up to 80,000 SKUs could see the light of day. This was not easy to track, nor maintain. It was time for a standalone PIM platform that was not driven by internal web developers.
Westcoast gets huge volumes of data from distributors and content partners throughout the business. This happens with lots of feeds coming from both internal and external sources. Pimberly enables them to bring all of this data into one place. They can then define what they trust and don’t trust from a data governance perspective and push it into the relevant channels.
I challenge Pimberly like I challenge all of my vendors and it’s still giving good value back to us. It’s obvious when something is good and is of value – you don’t need a fancy ROI calculator to tell you that.
Karl Harris, IT Director
A Community of Collaboration
Pimberly paved the way for a strong relationship with Westcoast straight away. The company came on as one of Pimberly’s beta customers. This allowed for collaboration in the development of the platform they required as a distributor.
Although Pimberly and Westcoast havesubsequently gone on to grow their businesses, the strong relationship that was forged in this initial phase has never wavered. In addition, the features and functionality developed at the start remain at the core of the Pimberly platform today.
Pimberly came to us and said; we are building something from the ground up, do you want to be a part of this?
And this opportunity was too good to miss.