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We help Whitbread create the supply chain of the future

Setting the scene

Whitbread is the UK’s largest operator of hotels, restaurants and coffee shops. Through its portfolio of household-name brands including Costa Coffee, Premier Inn, Beefeater and Brewers Fayre, the company employs more than 50,000 people and serves 28 million customers a month. Given the nature of its businesses, an efficient, effective and tightly-controlled supply chain is key to Whitbread’s continued success.

"PwC have understood the requirements of our customers and our brand strategy, and have played a key role in shaping and developing an appropriate supply chain solution through innovative thinking supported by data analytics. The solution will deliver better service to our store colleagues and customers more efficiently than through our current operating model."

Jeremy Harrison, Supply Chain Director, Whitbread

How we helped

In mid-2016 Whitbread decided to define the future vision for its supply chain for the next five to ten years and PwC was selected to help them do this.

Starting in August 2016, our team of supply chain specialists worked with the Whitbread team to define the future supply chain strategy. This detailed four-month review used SCOOP – PwC’s innovative, proprietary supply chain opportunity and optimisation platform – to identify the appropriate balance of cost and service and define the future roadmap.

SCOOP combines our expertise in supply chain and analytics into a unique platform of analytics applications. Using this platform, the PwC team was able to capture over 48 million rows of transactional data for a 12-month period and provide a comprehensive picture of Whitbread’s entire supply chain network. We also gathered and cleansed data from multiple sources to provide a complete visualisation of the company’s supply chain cost-to-serve and simulated future scenarios at delivery site level to identify optimal strategies.

With the roadmap and cost savings from transformation of the supply chain now clear, the PwC team moved into a four-month transition planning phase, which included mobilising plans for quick wins and running proofs of concept for the new strategy. In May 2017 the project entered the implementation phase, involving changing the operating model and ways of working, and retendering the outsourced logistics networks to select the most appropriate long-term partners.

Making a difference

Today, the benefits from Whitbread’s new supply chain strategy are starting to flow. Key elements include having a single supply chain organisation across the brands to maximise synergies. Whitbread is developing the capability to implement a multi-speed delivery network to support different brand objectives, with direct daily deliveries for fresh products and milk, and harmonised delivery frequency, vehicles and warehousing for the core network.  This will nearly halve the vehicle distance travelled - together with the associated carbon footprint - from fifteen million to eight million kilometres per year.

The supply chain transformation is an important element of Whitbread’s everyday efficiency programme, which has a target of £150 million over five years to help mitigate the sector’s future challenges. PwC is proud to have worked with Whitbread, using SCOOP, to define the supply chain of the future.

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