P.L.A.Y.ing in the Cloud Leads to Success

Posted by Ranga Bodla, Wholesale Distribution Industry Lead, NetSuite

The mark of success for a business can be measured in any number of ways, but for a startup, you might say success is going from no customers to a fully operational company with 70 percent annual growth for the past four years. Pet Lifestyle and You (P.L.A.Y.) at www.petplay.com has done just that. It launched its business on NetSuite in 2010, and has since grown to over 500 retail store partners in North America and a dozen international partners in Europe, Asia, and Canada. Today the company’s product inventory is at 200 SKUs, and rising.

P.L.A.Y. co-founders Deborah and Will Chen started the business with a very personal quest – to provide a quality bed for their dog Momo. They wanted something attractive that went with their décor. They wanted good quality, but also affordable. Unable to find it, the Chens decided to create their own and ultimately launched their own line of stylish, ecofriendly pet beds and toys. But they soon found out that competing with the big commercial players in the pet supplies market was no small task. The Chens put in a lot of effort — networking, establishing themselves in the market, creating an ecommerce site, and investing in an all-in-one software system that could handle the diversity of their business needs but be affordable to a startup like theirs. In 2010, they opened up their business on NetSuite’s cloud ERP platform.

Lisa Hisamune, associate sales director at P.L.AY., credits NetSuite for making it easy to create new SKUs, update information, and keep information that might be important in a future sale.

“It makes it easy to update all of the information people need, like UPC codes, purchasing codes, selling price, and it lets me do all of that with one single click,” Hisamune said. “We can keep information when we talk to a customer – what did I say, what did they ask about, what were they looking for, etc.”

NetSuite’s mobile support for virtually all of the central NetSuite functions and real-time data has also provided a huge bonus for P.L.A.Y. said Bill Parsons, sales associate for the company.

“When I’m at a hotel or tradeshow, I can get real-time information on who spoke to the customer last, and I can enter the notes at a tradeshow rather than scrambling to remember what was said and who we spoke to. I can save all calls and conversations into NetSuite,” Parsons said.

Financial information is also streamlined in NetSuite’s ERP system, with all of the data centralized in one database. That means data and data trends can be compared region to region, or store to store, and P.L.A.Y. can view reports on how the business is doing over time.

According to Deborah, the accounting information in NetSuite is easily tracked, and you can quickly see if a transaction is a personal check, credit card payment, a wire, or one of the various forms of ACH deposits.

“With NetSuite, all of my accounting information is easily tracked and I can avoid errors,” added Bill.
Check out this great customer video we did with P.L.A.Y. that really digs into some of NetSuite’s sales and marketing capabilities as well as showcasing the power of an integrated platform for a smaller company:



 

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