Fastflow to fashion

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The Burton Group is one of the largest fashion retailers in the UK, operating nearly 1,500 outlets and 92 department stores in high streets and shopping centres throughout the country. The Group reaches its customers through six main high street brands: Debenhams, the UK’s leading chain of family department stores and the fashion ‘Multiples’ store chains: Dorothy Perkins, Burton Menswear, Top Shop/Top Man, Evans and Principles. The Group also owns the Home Shopping brands Racing Green, Hawkshead, Innovations and McCord. The Group was founded in 1900 by Montague Burton, a Lithuanian immigrant, who established the original ‘Burton’ shop in Chesterfield. From his initial investment of £100 and a handful of staff, the business has developed significantly – employing over 43,000 people and generating annual sales of over £2 billion. This case study focuses on the Burton Group’s strategic project to reconfigure its supply chain. The initiative was launched in 1994 and is called Fastflow. The aim of Fastflow is: “To maximise sales by making sure that the right products are available to the customers at the time they want to buy them.” A ‘Fastflow’ solution One of the most crucial areas that fashion retailers must get right is the movement…

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