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Overview

New York Packaging is a premier supplier of custom plastics bags and packaging products for the supermarket industry. With SAP Business One, they now have a robust solution to help support the continuous growth of their business.

Traceability and automation of business processes

Enhanced business insights

Increased time savings and reduced errors

Increased quality of customer service

Objective

To achieve operational improvements and cost savings through automated processes and use real-time visibility into data to drive decision-making.

Solution

SAP Business One

Organization

Founded in 1959, New York Packaging was one of the first companies to extrude polyethylene film in the US. Several decades ago, the company evolved into a pure-play distributor by forming alliances with many of the plastic manufacturing pioneers of Asia. Today, New York Packaging has an innovative global sourcing and distribution model, along with patented products such as the Redi-Bag.

Why SAP Business One?

New York Packaging sells its portfolio of flexible packaging solutions to blue chip customers in grocery, food service, e-commerce, and retail across North America, Europe, and Asia. During a period of sustained growth, the company was looking to run its complex operations more efficiently, but was increasingly constrained by its legacy ERP solution. As Giancarlo Fransvea, New York Packaging’s VP of Technology explains, “We still had a lot of manual processes that relied on spreadsheets and paper, which were hard to maintain, but more importantly, we had no visibility into our business.”

“The biggest challenge was not knowing how much inventory we were holding, or where it was at any single point in time: we were overly dependent on our warehouse manager, who knew where to go to pick goods. So before I joined the company, the management team evaluated alternative ERP solutions on the market that would fit our budget while providing the reliability we needed, and SAP Business One easily came in first place. The initial implementation went live in 2016, before I joined the company, and while it was a vast improvement, we weren’t making the most of the solution’s capabilities.” 

Fortuitously, Giancarlo’ background was as a consultant in the implementation and development of SAP Business One, so he was intimately familiar with the software’s potential, and saw an opportunity to realize further value from New York Packaging’s ERP investment.

The Benefits

As Giancarlo recalls, “The first priority was to gain control over our 200,000 square foot warehouse in Ohio, which had previously been opaque to us. SAP Business One helped us achieve this through tight integration with a custom warehouse management solution developed by Sapphire. It’s more than a WMS – it’s an interface that leverages all of the standards of SAP Business One and is accessible via mobile devices. Once this went live, we took the opportunity to do an accurate stock count. Since then, we have had detailed visibility into our inventory: we know the exact bin locations of goods and can track their movement in and out of the warehouse on a FIFO basis. We also simplify the management of eight third-party warehouses through SAP Business One.”

The modern ERP solution has yielded further process improvements when it comes to imports. “Key to our competitive advantage and scalability is our scope of sourcing, but it used to be difficult to track goods shipped from overseas and manage all associated import documentation. Now, all of our import processes are contained within SAP Business One, so we know the moment goods leave the manufacturer, and when they’re received. All costs related to the shipment are automatically allocated to the imported items and related documentation is associated with the invoice and purchase order.”

The next big project for New York Packaging was the integration of an MRP solution in early 2019. Giancarlo attests, “Now we have full control over material requirements planning, we can easily tell what to purchase based on demand forecasts. As a result, we’ve significantly lowered our inventory while accelerating processes, and we make better decisions thanks to immediate visibility into our data.” 
Today, New York Packaging is going from strength to strength with SAP Business One. “As a dynamic, fast-growing company, we customize the functionality on an ongoing basis to meet our unique requirements. If the board needs strategic information, we’ll create a bespoke dashboard or report in response. We progressively improve the way we operate through a sustained process of change management,” continues Giancarlo. 

“SAP Business One is so flexible – we’ve just created a transport management solution with the user defined objects that come as standard with the platform. Our next project will be to upgrade to the latest version of SAP Business One, as release 9.3 has some new capabilities that we’d like to take advantage of, such as live chat and some MRP enhancements. We’re currently looking for a pallet management system, so we can identify and track assets in the supply chain. We also have an electronic data interchange project in the pipeline: we work with big customers like Walmart, Panera Bread and Estée Lauder, who typically order through EDI. We want to make it easier to co-ordinate the order process and eliminate the human error associated with manual data entry. This is a great opportunity to streamline business processes with our trading partners, to further elevate our reputation for customer service.”

Working with Sapphire

As a past master of SAP Business One, Giancarlo and his team have a high degree of self-sufficiency when it comes to evolving and adapting the solution to meet the company’s specific requirements, but their partnership with Sapphire is nonetheless a significant advantage. “Sapphire provided a great implementation journey and are highly responsive whenever we need support with SAP Business One or our WMS. But more importantly, we know that once we have clearly identified a challenge to solve or a business goal to deliver, we can call them to assist us in defining the project plan. If we need an add-on to address an unmet need, they will propose the best solution, to help us shorten the time to implementation. We’re now enjoying substantial growth, much of which can be attributed to SAP Business One and our partnership with Sapphire,” concludes Giancarlo. 

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