Agile retail at its finest: River Island transforms its core merchandising processes with Nextail
With a history that goes back more than 65 years, River Island is a well-known fashion retailer, popular for its stylish, affordable apparel. River Island embarked on an ambitious digital transformation ahead of many other long-standing retailers, and has since become a pioneer at the forefront of innovation and technology.
Impact at a glance:
A shared agile retail philosophy
River Island recognized early on that traditional approaches to core merchandising processes were becoming too inflexible and static to keep up with evolving customer demands. They also sought a partner who would enable them to:
- Improve the efficiency of their forecasting and in-season inventory management for better availability and healthy coverage levels
- Detect seasonality changes and point of sale-level demand to capture more opportunities during promotions and major sales events
- Increase sales and profitability and improve sell-through
River Island chose Nextail for two very specific reasons: A shared agile retail philosophy and the fashion expertise embedded into each Nextail solution.
“At River Island, we saw the opportunity to future-proof our core merchandising processes in a way that fits with the overall transformation we’ve made across the business. We were eager to partner with Nextail to use data in a way we never had before, helping us to become more agile in our decision-making in order to benefit our customers.”
River Island Supply Chain Director
Agile, data-driven in-season inventory management
River Island can now leverage hyper-local demand forecasting to quickly and efficiently prfioritize stock across channels for allocation and replenishment based on where each item has the highest likelihood of being sold. Since they can reduce initial allocations, they gain flexibility with warehouse stock for later in the season.
Lower stockouts and fewer lost sales
By reducing lost sales opportunities while maintaining coverage at healthy, and even lowered, levels, River Island has been able to increase sales and achieve better sell-out ratios.
Increased team agility and coordination
With clearer, more aligned efforts across teams and roles, River Island has gained more efficient decision-making and team agility, while Merchandisers have gained more time to carry out strategic planning and identify additional opportunities.
“Nextail, combined with our commercial knowledge on product, really allows us to be an industry leading function and really drive the way.”
River Island Head of Merchandising