THE STORY BEHIND THE LABEL
Summit provided innovative high-tech solutions for Whistler Brewing’s label supply chain. That’s millions of labels, printed, packaged, and ready to apply with ease.
Whistler Brewing is an icon and pioneer in the BC Craft Beer industry (they’re kind of a big deal). Established in 1989 and now distributed across Canada and markets around the world, this brewery has multiple brands with a loyal following that keeps on growing.
“They’re responsive, fast, innovative and genuinely have our best interest at heart. Summit has shown us a better way and I now don’t have to worry about this side of our business any more thanks to them. They truly have an amazing team over there.”
Vadim Bajgoric, Director, Supply Chain of Whistler Brewing
Very long lead-times upwards of 10 weeks combined with inconsistent service were constant points of stress for many members of the WB operations and marketing teams. Multiple late delivery dates (sometimes weeks at a time) causing delayed product launches were commonplace. Operations regularly had to juggle their bottling schedules and the marketing team were often restricted in promoting new beers and other beverages due to inconsistency in their label supply chain.
Whistler Brewing had three main objectives with their label production:
- Up-to-date impactful labels that stand out on the shelf and maintain their high quality standards for their loyal following.
- On-time, consistent, and sustainable ordering process––ideally without the huge price-tag that comes along with storing that much inventory.
- Shorter lead times and better communication (eliminate the stress on their team and get them back to the beer).
At the start of 2018, we visited WB at their beautiful new office in Gastown to assess their existing label supply chain. By truly listening to their needs, we discovered there were massive opportunities to significantly improve their label buying experience for the millions of labels they procured every year.
Our team immediately identified key opportunities to help the entire WB team sleep better at night and focus on growth and brand building (the truly fun stuff). Within a month, we were able to implement just-in-time delivery, shorter lead times, 3D renders, prototyping, sampling and brand new communication and ordering platforms.
The Whistler Brewing team went from a six figure inventory to no storage fees in a matter of weeks. (Saving that six figures in overall business expenses––that’s a whole lot more to put towards extraordinary beer ingredients!). Their design team was able to take advantage of our flexible tech, lower volume runs, and shorter lead times to implement test market labels. So they could try a variety of labels, and test for the best before committing to their whole stock. Within a month, we were already having a huge impact on their business.