IGA and KJ stores improve inventory intelligence

To improve shelf availability for customers, food distributor W. Lee Flowers & Co. will install Itasca RetailMagic’s computer-generated DSD ordering and receiving systems at its IGA and KJ’s stores.

100% subsidiary of Alex Lee Inc.., W. Lee Flowers & Co. owns and operates IGA and KJ’s Market grocery stores in the Carolinas and Georgia. Its sister chain Lowes Foods has also set up Magic of Itasca in 2019 to ensure quality service and product availability.

“Itasca Retail and its inventory management capabilities have helped us maintain superior inventory conditions during my time at Lowes Foods,” said Chris Van Parys, president of Scranton, SC-based W. Lee Flowers. “I am very excited to implement the systems across our KJ’s and IGA banners, and look forward to seeing the impact they will have on our operations and our customer experience.”

“Customer satisfaction is our mission,” he added, “With the challenges our industry is currently facing, having real-time automated tools will make us a better operator for the communities that we serve.”

Many grocers have experienced empty shelves during the pandemic due to supply chain groans, causing shoppers to become frustrated. Itasca Inventory Intelligence enables retailers to automate historically manual ordering, inventory forecasting and DSD receiving processes with increased speed and accuracy to ensure satisfying shopping experiences and dramatically reduce waste and labor. ‘artwork. The system combines sophisticated algorithms and machine learning, along with a deep understanding of the North American grocery store replenishment process, to drive sales and productivity gains while reducing inventory, shrinkage, product handling and supplier credits.

Jeff Kennedy, President of Based in West Des Moines, Iowa Itasca Retail, said, “Alex Lee has seen tremendous benefits from our inventory intelligence solution, and we are thrilled to see W. Lee Flowers choosing to follow Lowes Foods on a similar journey. We are confident they will see results beyond their expectations, and we look forward to starting installation early in the new year. »

More than 85,000 employees in over 3,000 stores use Itasca Retail’s inventory information platform to manage consumer buying habits, labor shortages and changing supply chain trends. ‘supply. Itasca’s clients include Wegmans, PriceChopper/Market32, Tops Markets, The Fresh Market, Raley’s, Weis Markets, Lunds & ByerlysCardenas Markets and Brookshire Brothers.

W. Lee Flowers, a group of 63 supermarkets operated by Alex Lee, maintains a comprehensive warehouse of over 400,000 square feet that houses all major departments including grocery, meat, dairy, produce, ice cream, general merchandise, and health and beauty care. Alex Lee is No. 65 on the 2021 PG 100 list, Progressive Grocer of leading food and consumables retailers in North America.