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Alex Lee Using AI Technologies In Its MDI Wholesale Biz

MDI logo, Alex Lee

Last updated on March 25th, 2021 at 07:23 pm

To support its wholesale distribution business, Merchants Distributors (MDI), Alex Lee is implementing Demand ForecastingAI and Warehouse Replenishment from Symphony RetailAI, a global provider of AI-enabled revenue growth management solutions and customer-centric insights for retailers and CPG manufacturers across the entire value chain. 

Headquartered in Hickory, North Carolina, MDI supplies more than 600 retail food stores with food and non-food items in 12 eastern states. Until now, MDI’s supply chain processes were conducted manually based on buyers’ historical knowledge, leading to inefficient assortment forecasting. To improve the profitability of its supply chain through faster and more accurate merchandising decisions, MDI committed to leverage new solutions that automated its forecasting process.  

“Our primary goal is to ensure that MDI customers continue to grow profitably and create loyalty with their customers—so we needed technology that helps us more quickly understand market trends, react faster and invest in the right products,” said Anita Harris, CIO, Alex Lee. “With accurate demand forecasting and streamlined inventory management, our supply chain aligns more closely with our wholesale customers’ needs. This ensures we consistently serve them the right products at the right time.”

With the warehouse replenishment solution from Symphony RetailAI, MDI is able to identify demand signals that can be shared between the store and warehouse for increased inventory visibility and insights. The demand forecasting solution leverages machine learning and contextual data to improve forecast accuracy and remove manual guesswork, while simultaneously reducing out of stocks, excess inventory and spoiled foods. It also accommodates grocery-style functionality for buying, enabling replenishment of all categories including commodities, specialty and hyper-fresh items.

“In order to support the success of its customers and suppliers, distributors like MDI must ensure their own business practices are modernized and streamlined,” said Graeme Cooksley, president and COO of Symphony RetailAI. “We’re excited to help Alex Lee and MDI improve supply chain efficiency and ensure MDI remains an established industry leader.”

Alex Lee is currently implementing Symphony RetailAI’s solutions at MDI and plans to go live at the end of 2019.

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