Customers Cite Speed, Functionality for Success with NetSuite in Manufacturing, Distribution

Posted by Barney Beal, Content Director, NetSuite

Speed, growth, evolving functionality – a trio of NetSuite customers took to the stage at the Manufacturing/Wholesale Distribution industry keynote at SuiteWorld to discuss the importance of these traits in their business and the ways that NetSuite provides them with it.

As the first industry NetSuite focused on, it’s perhaps little surprise that wholesale distribution took such a central role on the second day of the conference. In fact, the manufacturing and wholesale distribution industries represent NetSuite’s largest customers and the most revenue of all the industry keynotes. According to speakers at the keynote, NetSuite added 650 new customers in wholesale distribution and manufacturing in the past year alone.


John Lane, COO of S-One, a global licensing and distribution company in digital printing, took to the stage to explain the importance of a speedy deployment. On the day that HP awarded the company an exclusive global licensing contract, S-One realized it was going to need to go global – and fast. A company with a single location in the U.S., expanded to 80 countries with 23 subsidiaries and 17 distribution centers in nine months. It was able to do that, thanks to NetSuite’s cloud-based system, Lane said.

“The initial value was doubling the size of our company in a couple of days,” Lane said. “Now we can do that over and over again.”

The message of speed and rapid deployment was one that came through loud and clear. Paul Farrell, Senior Vice President of Product Marketing, pointed to a number of NetSuite customer that were able to get up and running in months if not weeks. For example, Groupon launched 50 companies in 50 weeks, American Express Global Business Travel divested from its parent company and went live around the globe in just nine months. And it’s getting faster.

“We’re getting you from zero to cloud in 100 days,” Farrell said.

Lindemann Chimney, for example, was an early participant in NetSuite’s new implementation methodology and went live on ERP in 90 days and launched a new ecommerce website in 30 days. Lindemannn is not alone as a NetSuite customer in distribution making use of SuiteCommerce. More companies in manufacturing and distribution use SuiteCommerce than companies in retail, Farrell said.


Speed and the cloud were core reasons Specialty Bakery, a leading supplier of frozen bakery goods, chose NetSuite. Launched in 2013 by innovators in the commercial bakery industry, the very idea of the business was to be fast to market with a brand new 225,000-square-foot facility near the Indianapolis airport.

“We had very detailed requirements,” said Duane Brunner VP of Finance and Controller for Specialty Bakery. “We want to be better than best practices. With the toolset we have we’ve been able to do some really interesting things. From tracking raw materials in the door with inventory management to staging areas on the floor to shipping and financials, NetSuite has covered it. In my 12 years in the finance world, it’s the most end-to-end solution I’ve seen across the board.”

In fact, as NetSuite builds out new functionality, Specialty Bakery is able to take advantage as well as bake in its own customizations.

“We’re developing new products all the time and when we get new requirements, we don’t have to develop new specifications, we can adapt NetSuite to the job,” said Tim Ward Specialty Bakery CIO. “We’re beating out the competition by being able to use the NetSuite toolset to do things very quickly.”

NetSuite’s Farrell, in his remarks, said that NetSuite is changing the way it approaches building out industry functionality. Instead of spreading across multiple initiatives, NetSuite is focusing on core areas. The next focus?

“One of the big bets we’re making is on supply chain,” he said. “One-third of our hires went into Supply Chain Operational Excellence. We are making a big bet on incremental supply chain features.”

In the meantime, NetSuite has already invested heavily in wholesale distribution, announcing a slate of new distribution features, many targeted at specific warehouse management needs. Additionally, NetSuite has targeted outsourced manufacturing with a new announcement.


Ed McMahon, CEO of Epec, a manufacturer of hybrid battery packs and smart interfaces for the medical and aerospace industries, credited NetSuite in part for his company’s growth into 30 locations around the world.

“Every location has a NetSuite user,” he said. “It’s very easy to scale because all we need is an Internet connection to get up and running. We just opened our first office in Europe with Wales and will be up and running in two weeks. NetSuite made it very easy to start our operation over there.”

For more information, read about Lindemann Chimney’s rapid ERP deployment with NetSuite.

Learn about NetSuite’s new wholesale distribution functionality.

Learn about NetSuite’s capabilities for outsourced manufacturers.

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