Coats Digital, a market leader in production, capacity and material planning through its FastReactPlan solution, has announced a strategic partnership with Tunisia-based knitwear manufacturer Tunicotex to digitise its processes throughout its 40,000 square metre facilities in Soliman.
By placing Coats Digital’s solutions at the heart of its digitisation strategy, Tunicotex aims to transform its efficiency, data accuracy and inter-departmental collaboration across its full capacity of 190,000 pieces per month.
The need for this implementation was felt by Tunicotex after the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the knitwear bigwig began to re-evaluate its processes, systems and technologies and identified several roadblocks to its ambitions for post-pandemic growth.
The key factory departments relied on data housed in disconnected spreadsheets, and manual communication via e-mail to orchestrate planning and pre-production, before implementing FastReactPlan and that remained a challenge for the company.
As a result, business visibility and coordination got impacted, making it difficult for Tunicotex to measure work in progress and plan capacity, which in turn led to bottlenecks and left manufacturing lines idle at unpredictable times.
Similarly, without a consistent time and action calendar or clear visibility into raw materials, the Tunicotex team was limited in its ability to coordinate pre-production and delivery timelines, which led to miscommunication and affected the Group’s ability to deliver against the expectations of its brand customers.
Compounded by shorter deadlines, more complex orders and growing consumer demand, Tunicotex recognised a clear need to digitise its pre-production planning processes and to adopt best practices.
After evaluating the market, Tunicotex selected Coats Digital’s FastReactPlan solution this year in March, confident that its proven capabilities – used successfully in more than 2,000 factories in 40 countries worldwide – would be a cornerstone of a more efficient, collaborative process and the ability to both meet and exceed brand expectations.
“Selecting Coats Digital as a critical digital transformation partner was an obvious choice thanks to numerous glowing recommendations,” commented Haithem Bouagila, Managing Director of Tunicotex, adding, “Their expert team are passionate and knowledgeable, and they have been providing business-critical solutions to fashion manufacturers for decades. FastReactPlan is a trusted solution, proven thousands of times over across the garment and textile industry, and after the great training workshops we received from the Coats Digital team, we are confident that we will see a significant return on our investment in the next 2-3 years.”
To achieve that ROI, Tunicotex will make use of FastReactPlan’s visual, intuitive planning board to overhaul its planning process for greater efficiency and closer alignment with delivery deadlines.
The detailed MRP (Material Supply & Demand) built into FastReactPlan, integrated to Tunicotex’s ERP system, will enable Tunicotex’s teams to dynamically calculate their material supply and demand from an accurate, up-to-date sewing plan.
“Tunicotex is a beacon of manufacturing excellence in Tunisia, and we’re proud to have been chosen as their critical technology partner for their ongoing pursuit of digital innovation,” mentioned Stuart McCready-Stocks, Sales Director, EMEA for Coats Digital.
“As well as representing Coats Digital’s first strategic partnership in Tunisia, this project also sets the bar for the implementation of technology by manufacturers who are looking to move beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and to prepare their businesses for the future. With the implementation of FastReactPlan, Tunicotex and Coats Digital have already begun working together to build a lean, agile model for the future – one that unlocks valuable data insights and runs on digital cross-team collaboration to improve decision-making,” concluded Stuart.
It’s worth noting here that, Tunicotex was established in 1993 and has built a reputation as a sought-after supplier of a wide range of knitted products over the years, including cardigans, blazers and hoodies, which it produces for international brands such as Hugo Boss, Armani, Tommy Hilfiger and Calvin Klein. To cater to the needs of these high-profile brand customers, the Tunicotex Group has invested heavily in sustainability – adopting multiple industry certifications and standards, including GOTS and the Higg Index.