Vente-Privee Enhances Flash Sales Productivity with Frequentiel
Pioneer in online flash sales uses RFID to manage and track samples
"RFID is giving us better tracking and enabling us to better manage our merchandise samples. We exceeded the ROI goals we set for ourselves in under 3 years. We are also experiencing additional benefits such as improved process visibility, reduced time-to-market with less errors and less delays."
— Lilian Mariani, Project Director at Vente-Privee
- Pioneer and leader of the online flash sale model
- Organises up to 20 sales a day in peak periods
- ROI on RFID solution achieved in less than 3 years
- Better manage the flow of merchandise samples through the organization.
- Attain 100% tracking of samples.
- OCTO+ item-level RFID software platform.
- Employee facing apps to streamline routine tasks.
- Expert retail, software integration and RFID professional services.
- Device and fixed hardware management services.
- Frictionless transfer of samples between departments.
- Less lost samples.
- Complete tracking.
Located just outside Paris, the warehouse at Vente-Privee headquarters is very similar to a department store offering a wide variety of items. 450 employees work to prepare flash sales and samples are moved through various departments including the photography team. 1,500 more employees are needed to operate the website in several languages where customers become members and buy discounted items from major brands.
The items stored at the headquarters are all unique samples of products that the website will put forward as part of a flash sale organized with a brand. The sales production team is responsible for photographing and entering articles in the website’s catalog.
Managing Samples by the Hundreds of Thousands
The company organizes an average of 10 flash sales per day, 20 during the peak periods. Brands deliver the samples to a dedicated warehouse, where they are redirected once Vente-Privee has entered them in the catalog.
“The logistics department receives them from the warehouse and organizes deliveries to the different divisions related to the preparation of a sale, including the agency responsible for photographing and preparing samples, ironing, decor, etc,” says Lilian Mariani, Project Director at Vente-Privee.
The samples, once registered in the catalog, return to the dedicated warehouse where employees return them to the supplier.
Until recently, sample information was transmitted via email and Excel spreadsheet files, but the company’s six-fold growth between 2007 and 2011 made tracking more complex. In order to know where all samples are at any given time, Vente-Privee adopted RFID technology.
“The technology allows tracking and better management of the flow of our samples,” says Mariani.
One Virtual, All-Seeing Warehouse
Vente-Privee put out an RFP and subsequently selected Frequentiel to integrate radio terminals and RFID tags.
At the warehouse, operators attach reusable RFID tags to each sample as soon as it arrives. Before returning it to the suppliers, they remove the tag. The removed tag can be applied to the next incoming article. Each label includes a unique number so that all sample movements and statuses are recorded by the system and are visible in real-time. If a garment is already carrying a tag, the system ignores it and only recognizes the series of figures that Vente-Privee has applied.
Return on Investment Achieved in Less Than Three Years
Implementation of an RFID solution can require an investment of several hundred thousand dollars. Because tagging and untagging operations are new, they constitute an additional cost. A smart label is worth 30 cents. Nevertheless, the return on investment has been achieved in less than three years because manual controls are fewer, tag reading is faster and there are less lost samples.
“The ROI is even higher if we include additional benefits such as improved process visibility, reduced time-to-market with less errors and less delays,” says Mariani.