Sheetz, Heritage Dairy Stores Implement BlueCube Solutions

Chains rolling out backoffice, operations management systems

ALPHARETTA, Ga. -- Sheetz Inc. has purchased BlueCube Enterprise and components of the BlueCube Enterprise Supply Chain Management & Financial Management suites for implementation in Sheetz's more then 300 company-owned convenience stores.

Separately, Heritage's Dairy Stores said that it has completed an enterprise-wide implementation of BlueCube Enterprise Supply Chain Management suite in its 36 corporate-owned stores.

We are always looking to improve how we run our organization, and increase the level of convenience we provide [image-nocss] for our customers, said Stan Sheetz, CEO of Altoona, Pa.-based Sheetz. If we can affordably press technology into service on those goals, we will. That's what stands behind our commitment to the BlueCube Enterprise solution. We are confident the effort will drive more profitable business and improve service consistency across the company.

John Moulton, director of store systems, said We've focused on using the system's store-level supply chain, workflows and forecasting features to reduce our food service costs through an improved alignment of production plans and food inventory with demand. But, with the system's integrated support for fuel, recipes, cash and merchandise, we'll quickly leverage those capabilities, as well. It's working quite well in our pilot sites, and it's great to know that the product's feature set is as progressive as we are.

The implementation will improve store operations for a variety of Sheetz store concepts including its standard c-store configurations with fuel islands and the now-famous MTO (Made-To-Order menus) program, as well as their newer mall foodservice environments and innovative convenience restaurant concepts. The agreement targets approximately 40 new sites to be configured with BlueCube Enterprise through the end of 2005, with a conversion of existing sites shortly thereafter.

BlueCube Enterprise for Petroleum Retail is a complete solution for the c-store industry. The system's closed-loop approach to improving operations, its intuitive dashboard with alerts and reports and its efficiency as a web-based solution provides all the backoffice functionality and performance required by today's competitive retail environments, the company said. Its comprehensive interface to a variety of point-of-sale (POS) systems provides a tight, two-way connection to assist with its forecast, budget, inventory/merchandise, cash and supplier-related controls. The BlueCube Software applications are currently deployed in a centralized, hosted architecture, reducing the administrative cost and effort of managing the solution.

More than 10,000 retail sites have been automated with BlueCube Enterprise, said the company.

Meanwhile, Heritage's Dairy Stores selected BlueCube Enterprise in late 2003 as a key part of an initiative to automate its stores; a project which required the selection, purchase and implementation of systems providing complete, integrated point-of-sale and backoffice functionality.

BlueCube provided the solution in partnership with Retail Data Systems (RDS), an experienced VAR of BlueCube Software products to middle- and small-business retailers.

Without a dedicated IT staff, Heritage's Dairy Store's project requirements were wide-ranging. The company sought a backoffice solution that could tackle its foodservice and c-store inventory, tight integration with the chosen POS, real-time reporting and visibility across the chain and implementation expertise and resources. The goal was to put a system in place that everyone in the company could, and would, use.

Jay Dempsey , Heritage's Dairy Stores director of marketing, said, BlueCube Enterprise's workflows standardize our inventory processes, and BlueCube Dashboard provides the needed insight into our operation as well as an elegantly simple way to run the business. Thanks to the RDS training regimen, our people have not only embraced the solution, but they communicate more quickly and effectively than ever before. Even now, with all the stores installed and running, BlueCube Enterprise's usability continues to positively impact our business, and we look for that impact to grow as we expand how we use the BlueCube Enterprise platform.

Alpharetta, Ga.-based BlueCube is a provider of backoffice and operations management systems for the petroleum and c-store industry.