Witchery, Mimco move to eStar, Oracle Retail

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Witchery, Mimco move to eStar, Oracle Retail

Country Road acquisition forces migration.

Australian fashion brands Witchery and Mimco have moved off the Magento e-commerce platform and onto eStar after their acquisition by Country Road.

The Country Road Group took over Witchery and Mimco in October 2012 for $180 million.

It has since focused efforts on moving the brands off existing systems — including e-commerce and merchandising — and onto its own.

Both companies were also migrated onto Country Road’s Oracle Retail merchandising system mid to late last year.

The change and integration program is a "critical enabler" of Country Road’s future growth prospects, the group said in its recent yearly review.

Online sales for the Country Road group — which alongside the two new acquisitions also includes the Country Road and Trenery brands — in 2012 accounted for 6 percent of total sales.

Country Road expects that to increase now all four brands are on one platform.

“The systems and process integration program is now allowing the Witchery and Mimco brands to receive the benefit of enhanced replenishment and fulfillment since migrating to the group’s proven merchandise and e-commerce systems platforms,” CEO Ian Nairn told shareholders.

“The systems and process focus will now to move to group growth and efficiency enhancement initiatives in the second half of the financial year and beyond as we launch key initiatives including the upgrade of the integrated point of sale system, the consolidation of the customer loyalty platforms, the consolidation of the supply chain and warehousing functions and the consolidation into one head office in Richmond, Victoria.”

It is unknown what effect the systems consolidation has had on the merged Country Road IT team. The group declined to comment when contacted by iTnews.

The group has embarked on a concerted effort over the past few years to develop an omni-channel offering to provide customers a consistent shopping experience across physical stores and online.

It offers customers real-time inventory information on its website via a home-grown algorithm, which polls the single inventory database Country Road uses across online and physical stores to ascertain the most appropriate location the customer can buy their desired item.

The system is also available in store; if a particular retail outlet is lacking a specific item, the customer can be shown in real-time which other stores currently stock it.

Half-yearly sales were buoyed by the Witchery and Mimco acquisitions, with the group posting a record net profit of $38 million in the six months to December 2013, a 72 percent rise on 2012.

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