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Columbia Sportswear Scales New Heights with Supply Chain Execution Software from Manhattan Associates


Following the opening of its European distribution centre in Cambrai, France, Manhattan Associates' WMS has helped the sports clothing specialist to meet its European fulfilment goals

PARIS/LONDON - November 26th 2003 - Manhattan Associates, Inc. (Nasdaq: MANH), the global leader in providing supply chain execution (SCE) solutions, today announced that Columbia Sportswear, the global leader in the design, sourcing, marketing and distribution of active outdoor apparel and footwear, has experienced a successful Warehouse Management System (WMS) go-live at its European distribution centre (DC) in Cambrai in Northern France. The system's implementation has helped the sports clothing specialist to process record order volumes in the servicing of its growing European customer base.

In September 2001, following a strategic decision taken by Columbia Sportswear to set up a centralised European distribution model, the company embarked on the construction of a high-tech warehouse - a facility that would become Columbia Sportswear's distribution hub for all of its European logistics requirements. In July 2002, once the construction of the 25,000m2 distribution centre (DC) was completed, the facility was equipped with various types of material handling equipment including 3.5km of powered conveyor, an automated storage and retrieval system and belt tray sorters with a capacity to process 9,000 cases per hour.

A second component of Columbia Sportswear's strategic review in 2001 involved the decision to bring its logistics management in-house, rather than continue to outsource it through logistics services providers. This re-organisation took place in the run-up to the opening of the Cambrai facility scheduled for the end of 2002.

As the single distribution facility for the whole of Europe and with such a high level of automation, Columbia Sportswear needed to ensure that the Cambrai DC not only had an extremely reliable and flexible WMS, but one that would enable it to meet the industry-specific requirements, such as compliant labelling and seasonal demand fluctuations, of its retail customers.

Based on the long-term and very positive experience Columbia Sportswear had enjoyed with Manhattan Associates' WMS at its warehouse in Portland, Oregon (USA), the decision to select Manhattan Associates' solution for Cambrai was a straightforward one.

The WMS implementation at the Cambrai DC started in June 2002 and was completed in December 2002. The first container was delivered in November 2002 and the first shipment was despatched on 2nd January 2003. The system effectively works as the brain of the distribution facility, enabling the management of all aspects of DC operations: receiving, returns processing, put-away, inventory management, and order fulfilment comprising picking, packing and shipping.

After three consecutive quarters of successful operation, Columbia Sportswear has reported very positive results. "Not only have we achieved our production objectives quarter-on-quarter, but this is the first time we have achieved such results in Europe following a new warehouse opening," underlines Joseph Senne, european distribution director at Columbia Sportswear.

Henri Seroux, sector manager for Manhattan Associates in France, commented, "Based on its experience in the USA, Columbia Sportswear has successfully managed to replicate a proven supply chain model to fit its European fulfilment operation. We are confident that Manhattan Associates will continue to provide Columbia Sportswear with a firm technological foundation for its future growth both in Europe and its other key markets around the world."

About Columbia Sportswear
Founded in 1938 in Portland, Oregon (USA), Columbia Sportswear Company is a global leader in the design, sourcing, marketing and distribution of active outdoor apparel and footwear. As one of the largest outerwear manufacturers in the world and the leading seller of skiwear in the United States, the Company has developed an international reputation for quality, performance, functionality and value. To learn more about Columbia Sportswear, please visit the company's website.

About Manhattan Associates
Manhattan Associates, Inc. is the global leader in providing supply chain execution solutions. We enable operational excellence through our warehousing and distribution, transportation and trading partner management applications. These integrated solutions leverage state-of-the-art technologies, innovative practices and our domain expertise to enhance performance, profitability and competitive advantage. Manhattan Associates has licensed more than 925 customers representing more than 1,400 facilities worldwide, which include some of the world's leading manufacturers, distributors and retailers. For more information about Manhattan Associates, visit the website.

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