SOURCE: Steelwedge

March 30, 2005 19:23 ET

Steelwedge Enterprise Planning & Performance Management Suite Drives Operational Alignment

Complex Manufacturers Use Steelwedge EPPM to Accurately Forecast Demand and Manage Performance Against Plan

PLEASANTON, CA -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 30, 2005 -- Steelwedge Software Inc., the leading innovator in the emerging field of Enterprise Planning & Performance Management (EPPM), today announced the Steelwedge EPPM suite. The EPPM suite is used by manufacturers of complex or configured products for accurately forecasting demand across the enterprise.

"The Steelwedge EPPM suite leveraged our investment in SAP and enabled us to move from planning in disconnected organizational silos to a collaborative planning process," said Seema Phull, Director of Process and Technology at Enterasys Networks, a global provider of Secure Networks for enterprise customers. "As a result, we were able to improve our forecast accuracy, move from a quarterly planning cycle to a monthly planning cycle and significantly reduce our missed-revenue opportunity costs, while lowering inventory costs. In addition, our planning process has been dramatically streamlined -- we have gained more control over the planning process, eliminated the use of spreadsheets and our analysts are spending time analyzing information instead of chasing data."

EPPM improves the demand plan by intelligently incorporating key inputs such as marketing budgets, sales pipeline opportunities and new product introduction plans. The result is a cross-functional enterprise-wide plan-of-record (PoR). The EPPM suite then leverages the PoR to enable manufacturers to get an accurate view of their overall performance against the plan via a rich set of metrics based dashboards and scorecards. EPPM then drives a closed loop planning process by supporting an enterprise-wide budgeting and financial planning process that directly ties to the demand plan and drives a proforma Profit & Loss statement.

Steelwedge's breakthrough Enterprise-Enabled Excel technology provides a highly scaleable enterprise-wide planning platform and delivers a powerful, easy-to-implement and easy-to-use user solution. Leading companies have implemented the Steelwedge EPPM suite for Demand Forecasting and Planning, Sales & Operations Planning (S&OP), Revenue and Margin Planning, and Sales Opportunity Planning on top of popular ERP systems such as SAP and Oracle.

"Forecast accuracy is one of the most important and advantageous supply chain metric," said Lora Cecere, Research Director, Supply Chain Planning & Execution, AMR Research. "According to our benchmarking research, a one-point improvement in demand forecast accuracy could yield a two-point improvement in perfect order performance. Organizations with better forecasts gain competitive advantage with a 35% shorter cash-to-cash cycle time."

"Manufacturers today have to deal with a manual and ad-hoc planning process that results in plans that do not come together because they were created in organizational silos with incorrect assumptions around revenue, margins and unit shipments," said Timothy Campbell, President and CEO of Steelwedge. "Steelwedge EPPM suite was specifically developed to enable the manufacturers who have significant operating and product complexity, to rapidly create a consensus demand plan. We are getting significant interest from leading manufacturers, especially those in technology, communications infrastructure and specialty chemicals, who want to improve forecast accuracy, align business and operational plans, accelerate planning cycles, lower inventory levels and improve customer delivery rates."

About the Steelwedge EPPM Suite

The Steelwedge EPPM suite includes:

1. Steelwedge Demand and Forecast Planning (D&FP) -- The Steelwedge D&FP solution provides an intuitive Excel based front-end solution through which the cross-functional forecasting process can be automated. It provides a rich range of quantitative forecasting techniques and supports top-down, bottom-up, and middle-out forecasting. It provides support for complex product environments including product mix management and dynamic accessory and component attach rates.

2. Steelwedge Sales Opportunity Planning (SAOPP) -- The Steelwedge SAOPP solution translates customer-level sales opportunities into meaningful product-level demand information to be incorporated into the consensus demand forecasting and planning process. It leverages technology that analyzes and filters sales pipeline data for forecast inclusion or exclusion and incorporates account manager bias and trends.

3. Steelwedge Product Lifecycle Planning (PLP) -- The Steelwedge PLP solution provides the ability to model new product forecasts and end of life forecasts based upon historical trends of similar products, marketing program plans and what-if scenarios. It combines looks-like, super cession and other traditional new product introduction (NPI) approaches with ground-breaking new product introduction cycle, curvilinear and "looks like" analysis techniques.

4. Steelwedge Product Configuration Planning (PCP) -- The Steelwedge PCP solution leverages Steelwedge's patent pending Statistical Bill of Materials -- sBOM technology to enable operations and supply chain managers to forecast dependent accessory and configurable products demand. It uses Component level forecasting that links independent and dependent demand and historical attach rate trend analysis to forecast product option and time phased (dynamic) attach rates for configure to order products.

5. Steelwedge Sales & Operations Planning (S&OP) -- The Steelwedge S&OP solution provides the ability to configure and drive an S&OP process that allows corporate executives to agree on goals that are feasible and profitable, while improving communications, teamwork and accountability across the organization. The Steelwedge S&OP solution incorporates supply-demand balancing, scenario planning, rough cut capacity planning, workflow, meeting facilitation and issue tracking.

6. Steelwedge Revenue and Margin Planning (RMP) -- The Steelwedge R&MP solution enables financial managers to drive a cross-functional drive expense budgeting process which directly integrates to the overall planning process and ensures execution to the financial plan. In addition to support for chart of account, role, division and region-specific budget analysis, RMP supports scenario, what-if, waterfall, cascade and change analysis and reconciles unit forecasts with revenue, margin and Annual Operating (AOP) plans.

7. Steelwedge Performance Management (PM) -- The Steelwedge PM solution provides real-time configurable executive dashboards and multi-dimensional performance reports which provide a clear picture of how a company is performing. Actual to plan progress, margin and inventory metrics, expected future financial results, KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are made visible through an interactive executive dashboard which enables executives to evaluate corporate performance against plan from multiple dimensions such as product family by region by channel.

8. Steelwedge Sales Pipeline Intelligence (SPI) -- The Steelwedge SPI solution analyzes sales pipeline changes (waterfall analysis) with drill-downs to perform root cause analysis; delivers real time exceptions and alerts to sales pipeline changes over pre-defined thresholds and provide scorecards to measure sales team performance and commitments.

About Steelwedge

Steelwedge Software, Inc. is the leading innovator in the emerging field of Enterprise Planning and Performance Management, helping manufacturing companies create, validate and synchronize functional plans, actively align them with business and financial targets, and gain executive visibility and control over enterprise performance. Founded in 2000, Steelwedge Software is privately held and located in Pleasanton, California. For more information, please visit www.steelwedge.com.

Steelwedge and all Steelwedge product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of Steelwedge Software, Inc. All other company and product names are trademarks of their respective holders.

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