Established in 1987, Seacore Seafood is Canada’s leading importer, distributor and custom processor of fresh and frozen fish, seafood and live lobsters. Recognized as one of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies, Seacore capitalized on its inward and outbound logistics to make its consumer brand, OceanPrime, widely available across North America while managing more than 5,000 fresh and frozen items in inventory.
From its state-of-the-art 75,000 square foot facility in the Toronto suburb of Vaughan, Ontario, Seacore houses its three distinct divisions – OceanPrime, Fisherman’s Depot and Seafood Depot. These divisions serve thousands of consumer, retail and wholesale seafood customers. Its extensive network of inward and outbound logistics allows Seacore to buy seafood directly from the source – whether its trailer trucks picking up seafood in New England or Florida, flights arriving from the Philippines and Europe or fresh shipments from Asia and South America. This enables Seacore to provide the widest variety of fresh, high-quality seafood ranging from Alaskan crab legs to barramundi from Australia and salmon from Ireland.
To keep up with the growing demand for its products from three distinct businesses and channels, Seacore had to automate core business functions including inventory management, accounting, route management, order entry, logistics and retail point-of-sale. Seacore staff was overwhelmed by the time-consuming manual processes which inhibited the company’s enormous growth prospects. Moreover, Seacore executives grew concerned about the potential negative impact that the tedious and labor-intensive manual processes could have on the company’s customer service, order delivery times and inventory control.
Seacore Seafood Director of Operations, Sal Battaglia, sought an ERP software solution that would improve core business functions such as accounting, while offering specific food distribution, logistics and retail point-of-sale capabilities. Battaglia evaluated many different ERP software packages, but found VAI’s S2K software the most robust and flexible solution to meet the specialized requirements of a fast-growing seafood wholesale and retail distributor.
With the installation of VAI’s S2K for Food software and S2K e-Commerce, Seacore automated and integrated key business processes across the organization. The company has dramatically improved its customer delivery times, order accuracy and overall customer service.
After implementing VAI S2K Route Manager and S2K for Food, Seacore has realized tremendous business benefits that have allowed them to drive an impressive growth trajectory. Those key results include:
Improved Accounts Receivables Management
85% of Seacore’s account receivables are now current – which is almost unheard of in the food distribution industry.
Faster Customer Delivery Rates and Reduced Order Picking Time
Truck routing processes have improved by 50%, ensuring extremely high levels of prompt customer delivery. With S2K Route Manager, Seacore can view its orders and number of orders per route, enabling the company to set up its deliveries most efficiently. Utilizing bulk and wave picking, Seacore reduced its order picking time by 40%, further increasing its already impressive on-time delivery rates.
Streamlined Fish Cutting Process
Seacore removed lengthy steps from its fish-cutting process through the S2K automation, leading to an 80% efficiency rate. This allowed Seacore to save time and service more customers, thereby growing its business exponentially.
Up-to-the-Minute Consolidated Financials
The company can now view its consolidated financials at the push of a button and view instantly how retail sales are faring hour-to-hour or minute-by-minute. This is especially important during busy seasonal periods and major holidays such as Christmas, when the retail division realizes a 1000% sales increase.
Greater Inventory Accuracy
With three distinct divisions sharing a master inventory, Seacore wanted to do automatic transfers within each company, in real-time. VAI tailored the installation in such a way that if one Seacore division used an item that was purchased by another company, an automatic transfer would be made and the inventory along with the ledger accounts would be auto-adjusted to keep everything in balance. The S2K installation also introduced bin locations to the Seacore warehouse, allowing the Seacore staff to know the exact location of an item especially when there are multiple pallets in different locations.
Faster Order Entry
Seacore was able to hasten order entry as well as meet specific customer requirements. For example, a customer may want only certain items sold to their locations and their own item numbers would have to appear on invoices. With S2K, Seacore can create order guides from past history or from a custom list, and also restrict a customer to only buy those items on their order guide.
Automatic Real-Time Traceability
Seacore can now do full traceability on where the seafood is coming from and how it was caught – information which has become increasingly important to retailers such as Whole Foods, as well as its consumers. S2K enables Seacore to provide this information to its customers in real-time.
VAI installed its Point-of-Sale application for Seacore’s retail operation. By accessing the same inventory files as its wholesale division, Seacore can instantly see inventory commitments from its retail store or warehouse operation.
Seacore implemented S2K e-Commerce to allow customers to place orders through the Seacore website. In addition, customers can check their order status and access their account status and current receivables.
“VAI’s S2K software allowed us to reach phenomenal efficiencies across the organization. The S2K installation dramatically improved nearly every part of our business – from accounting and logistics to inventory and warehouse management. By automating many of these key functions, our team can focus on critical aspects of our business such as sales and customer service. And we feel confident that we can continue our impressive growth trajectory knowing that our business is running as smoothly and efficiently as possible.”
Director of Operations