Some Analytics & Data Platform Case Studies Relevant for the Retail Sector

These are some of the published case studies related to Analytics and Data Management in the Retail Sector.

Company (links to Case Study)




Sales and Marketing Services Firm Improves Offerings and Efficiency with Self-Service BI

CROSSMARK needed faster and more detailed insight into terabytes of information about products’ supply and demand. To achieve this aim, CROSSMARK deployed a turnkey business intelligence (BI) solution from Microsoft and HP that is based on the Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Parallel Data Warehouse. As a result, CROSSMARK improves service, creates reports at least 50 percent faster, speeds employee efficiency, and saves money.


Hanesbrands logo

Apparel Maker Uses BI to Help Reduce Finished Goods Inventory Units by More Than 10 Percent

The continued success of Hanesbrands depended upon delivering the right products to the right retailers in the right quantities at the right times. Hanesbrands solved this problem by adopting a Business Intelligence (BI) solution: a demand signal repository, based on VMT’s Velocity® Solution Suite running on Microsoft technologies. Hanesbrands now makes better, faster decisions across its enterprise by relying on a centralized database.



Data Services Firm Gains Real-Time Access to Product Data with In-Memory Technology

To ensure that its customers receive timely, accurate product data, Edgenet powers its online selling guide with the In-memory OLTP solution delivered with Microsoft SQL Server 2014. Edgenet is also using self-service business intelligence (BI) to improve its own operations. By taking advantage of Microsoft in-memory technologies, the company can provide real-time access to product data, gains seven times faster throughput, and improves both customer satisfaction and business insight.

Stage Stores

Stage Stores moves ahead with Microsoft Dynamics Marketing & Power BI
At Stage Stores, marketers were spending too much valuable time pushing and pulling data. Now with the enhanced reporting functions, and the campaign planning capabilities of Microsoft Dynamics



Airfreight Firm Improves Data Analysis and Performance with Powerful BI Solution

Airfreight container management company Jettainer is winning new business and needs faster data processing to keep up with growing volumes of data. The company also wants to reduce the complexity of its IT environment, which has separate platforms for inventory control and business intelligence (BI). Jettainer is implementing a solution based on Microsoft technology, which will improve system performance and data quality

Choice Hotels International


Hospitality Firm Improves Business Insight and Availability with Database Solution

Choice Hotels International, a leading hospitality company, wanted to ensure the availability of its online property management system and give employees better business intelligence (BI) tools. To improve insight and uptime, the company is implementing Microsoft SQL Server 2012 with the AlwaysOn feature and new BI capabilities. As a result, Choice Hotels will cut failover time from minutes to seconds, improve customer service and business insight, and gain an enhanced platform for business growth.

Georgia Pacific


Manufacturer Boosts Performance, Improves Decision Making with New Data Warehouse

Georgia-Pacific is a leading producer of building products and paper goods for consumers worldwide. To address rapid business growth, the company’s Building Products unit needed a higher-performing, more scalable data warehouse. In response, the firm implemented Microsoft SQL Server Fast Track data warehouse, which has greatly improved performance and provides faster and more reliable access to crucial business information. The solution also increases scalability and will offer a better view of data.

Retail Solutions Inc


Retailers Gain Millions in ROI and Improve Supply-Chain Efficiency with SaaS Solution

Retail Solutions, a leading global provider of software-as-a-service (SaaS) products, strives to improve profitability for its major customers. It implemented an interactive business intelligence (BI) solution based on Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise. Major suppliers and retailers worldwide use the solution to gain millions of dollars in ROI through increased sales and better supply-chain management. Retail Solutions is also expanding its business 40 percent annually by taking advantage of a Microsoft platform.



Geospatial Firm Uses the Cloud to Boost Software Scalability and Simplify BI Analysis

Esri, a geographic information system (GIS) solution provider, wanted to increase the scalability of its core solution using cloud technology to meet customer needs. It also wanted to address demands for easier analytical capabilities. In response, Esri developed ArcGIS Online, based on the Windows Azure cloud platform. Now, customers can implement a highly scalable cloud solution that offers access to real-time data, simplifies business intelligence (BI) processes, and delivers solutions more easily.

Holland America Line


Cruise Line Upgrades BI to Empower Users, Improve Guest Experience, Reduce IT Work

Holland America Line, one of the world’s leading cruise-ship companies, is using Microsoft business intelligence (BI) software to increase revenues and give guests a more memorable experience. By using Microsoft SQL Server 2012 and Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010, employees can mine data more deeply without help from the IT staff, giving the IT staff more time to improve IT solutions. The company has also eliminated expensive third-party licensing fees.



Taiwanese Tea and Dessert Restaurant Chain Gains Big Data Insight with Hybrid Cloud Solution  

BlackBall, a Taiwanese restaurant chain, wanted better business intelligence (BI) to help support regional growth. With help from Fusionex, BlackBall implemented a Big Data solution in a hybrid cloud deployment based on Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Enterprise and Windows Azure HDInsight Service. The company is using new insight into data from multiple sources, including social media feedback and its own product sales, to improve its competitive advantage and make better marketing decisions.

Auckland Airport


Airport Improves Business Agility with Near-Real-Time Reports and Self-Service BI Tools

Auckland Airport wanted better business intelligence (BI) tools to optimize operations, so it replaced existing Oracle and Cognos products with a BI solution that includes Microsoft SQL Server 2012 and Microsoft SharePoint Server 2010. As a result, the airport has improved business agility and profitability with near-real-time access to analytics information. In addition, it has simplified and strengthened regulatory compliance and significantly reduced reporting time.



What game will you want to go with that burger? Ziosk may already know.

What would make your next restaurant meal more enjoyable? Someone to recommend a rosé or entertain the kids? Or maybe a way to pay the bill without waiting for the waiter? The tabletop platform from fast-growing Ziosk® does all that—and now it’s set to do something more: Using Microsoft big data and cloud technologies, it’ll predict your preferences and serve them up as part of a better dining experience. The goal is to create personalized experiences that result in happier guests and more business for restaurants.

The Weather Channel


Leading Global Weather Company Saves 160 Hours Monthly, Boosts Efficiency and Control

The Weather Channel needed to increase business insight, streamline reporting processes, and improve data control. In 2012, it implemented a flexible business intelligence (BI) solution based on Microsoft SQL Server 2012 to take advantage of Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Power View via a portal and virtual desktops. As a result, The Weather Channel saves more than 160 hours each month generating reports, improves security and control, boosts efficiency, and increases insight and agility

Auckland Transport


City of Auckland Enriches Transportation Services with Citizen-Centric IT

Auckland Transport is responsible for all of the transportation services in the city, including roadways; bus, train, and ferry service; and bike paths. Auckland Transport then built a series of web-based applications that give citizens personalized control over their transportation needs. Aucklanders can report potholes, check real-time bus schedules, refill integrated ticket cards, and receive traffic congestion delay notifications that affect public transport routes. This improves visibility into these services and increases use of public transportation. The agency is using business intelligence to analyze terabytes of data from its many business systems and generate insights that fuel further service improvements.

Saudi Airlines


Microsoft Services implements BI for Airline for an anticipated operational savings of several millions

As the largest airline in the Middle East, Saudi Airlines offers domestic and international flights to over 90 destinations. To manage different aspects of the global operations, nine subsidiaries operate under the holding company, including Saudi Cargo, Saudi Catering, and Saudi Ground Services, totalling over 44,000 employees.



Microsoft Windows Azure a safe bet for sports bookmaker's website

Centrebet needed a dedicated microsite to provide timely race and betting information for customers during the busy 2011 Spring Racing Carnival. The company needed a web-hosting platform that was scalable, cost-effective and globally accessible – and that helped free up IT resources for its main betting operations. After considering a number of options, including an internally hosted cloud solution, Centrebet selected the Microsoft Windows Azure platform for its Spring Racing Carnival website.



Global Direct Seller Sees 100 Percent Availability with Data-Recovery Solution

How do you boost availability and speed disaster recovery across an expanding, global data infrastructure? For Amway, the answer is with Microsoft SQL Server 2014 and Windows Azure. In pilot tests, Amway found the two Microsoft technologies worked together to support 100 percent availability and reduce data center recovery time from six person-hours to 30 seconds.

Baltika Breweries


Brewer Increases CRM System Capacity by 54 Percent with Data Solution

As it continues to grow, Baltika Breweries needs more than skill in combining hops, malt, water, and yeast. It also needs a cost-effective way to scale out its mission-critical customer relationship management software. To meet that need, the company now uses the AlwaysOn Availability and In-Memory OLTP technologies of Microsoft SQL Server 2014. Throughput is up by at least 150 percent, supporting a 54 percent increase in users. Availability and IT productivity are both up, too.

LC Waikiki


Turkish Retailer Saves $1 Million a Year, Gains Faster Performance and Better Insight with Microsoft BI

To improve support for business growth and handle a rapidly expanding volume of data more efficiently, leading Turkish merchandiser LC Waikiki Retail Company wanted better reporting capabilities. To meet those goals, the company extended its on-premises Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Enterprise business intelligence (BI) solution with cloud-based Power BI for Office 365.



Youboox can recommend the perfect book for you—and the perfect recommendation engine

Taking inspiration from companies like Netflix and Spotify, French e-book subscription service Youboox saw its recommendation engine as its long-term-growth engine. But a home-grown upgrade was expensive and a Google service was too much trouble. Microsoft Azure Machine Learning offered a fast, simple, low-cost alternative that produced really great recommendations. The company now sees more user activity on its site, as well as more users coming to the site through recommendations.



Integrated Mobile Marketing Platform Powered by Microsoft Azure Boosts Sales, Increases Loyalty

Marketing technology company VMob wanted to address the declining sales of traditional brick-and-mortar retail stores with a sophisticated mobile platform. Hosted completely in Microsoft Azure, the solution helps retailers increase foot traffic, boost sales, and increased loyalty with customized incentives based on rich user analytics and data.

WASH Multifamily Laundry Systems


Laundry Innovator Manages Growing Business Using Cloud BI and Collaboration Tools

WASH Multifamily Laundry Systems, a leader in technology-advanced, eco-friendly laundry room services, is growing rapidly and using technology in novel ways to power that growth. It’s using Microsoft Office 365 to analyze data from 500,000 washers and dryers and make fast, fact-based decisions on pricing and service. It’s integrating acquisitions twice as fast and using social networking to maintain the company’s culture. With flexible licensing, WASH is also saving money.

Migros Genossenschaft Ostschweiz


Den Weg der Bratwurst bis in die Buchhaltung verfolgen

Migros Ostschweiz erhält erstmals einen vollständigen Überblick über ihre Warenbewegungen. Statt in Verarbeitungswellen denkt die Logistik nun in kleinsten Versandeinheiten und kann etwa Wareneingang und Vereinnahmung optimieren und höher automatisieren.

Zespri International


Kiwi Grower Prunes Costs, Defends Business from Disasters by Running SAP in the Cloud

Zespri International is the most successful marketer of kiwifruit on the planet. After the business was disrupted by an earthquake and plant virus, Zespri decided to move its business-critical SAP systems to Microsoft Azure. With the move, Zespri will reduce IT costs by up to US$1 million, insulate the business against natural disasters, and gain instant IT scalability to accommodate global growth. Zespri can maintain great SAP performance by adding Azure resources in minutes.



Infrastructure Improvements Help Increase Customer Satisfaction for Fashion Wholesaler

FashionBiz knew they needed to upgrade IT infrastructure to support operational changes to help them continue dramatic growth. During the long partnership between AUS IT and Microsoft, the business grew from a Microsoft Small Business Server environment to today’s platform leveraging the ‘Always-On’ functionality of SQL Server 2012 along with Exchange DAG and Windows Server 2012 DFSR.

Pizza Pizza


Restaurant Chain Uses Integrated Business Intelligence Solution to Maximize Sales

Pizza Pizza, a restaurant chain in Canada, wanted to build a data warehouse solution and provide employees with on-time insights. It chose an integrated business intelligence solution from Microsoft based on Microsoft SQL Server 2012 SP1, SQL Server Analysis Services, and Microsoft Excel. Employees enjoy easy, on-time access to business data.

Pier 1 Imports


Finding a Better Connection with Customers Through Cloud Machine Learning

Retailer Pier 1 Imports wanted to better connect with its customers using insights and data. To do that, the company took to the cloud to pilot a predictive analytics solution based on Microsoft Azure Machine Learning and Microsoft Power BI. As a result of the pilot, Pier 1 Imports may use data insights to predict which products customers will want in the future, create a dynamic website using predictive modelling and create more efficient and effective marketing campaigns.



Hy-Vee Boosts Performance, Speeds Data Delivery, and Increases Competitiveness

Hy-Vee operates a growing chain of employee-owned supermarkets in eight states in the midwestern United States. To boost its competitiveness, the company sought to increase its data warehouse performance, so it could deliver store-level purchasing data more quickly to its business analysts and managers. Hy-Vee also wanted to expand the capacity of its data warehouse. The company implemented a new Microsoft data warehouse solution that combines software with cost-effective hardware.

Merlot Aero

Basic CMYK 

Feature-Rich Airline Solution Streamlines and Optimizes Aircraft and Crew Utilization

Conceived and developed as an enterprise application for airlines of any size, Merlot meets customer demands of quick deployments and feature-rich airline operations management. Built on Microsoft Azure, Merlot offers security and cost effectiveness. Many airlines use it for regional or global operations, including Air Asia, Merpati in Indonesia, and Westjet Encore in Canada, among others.

Lufthansa Systems AG


Lufthansa Systems Cuts Data Recovery Time from Minutes to Seconds with Cloud Solution

As its business grows, Lufthansa Systems wants to anticipate customer needs for high-availability and disaster-recovery solutions. To meet this goal, it plans to adopt Microsoft SQL Server 2014 and Windows Azure. In a successful pilot, the Microsoft technology led to even faster and fuller data recovery, reduced costs, and the potential for a vastly increased focus on customer service and solutions, compared with the company’s current solutions.

Alaska Airlines


Airline Uses Tablets, Cloud Services to Offer More Engaging In-Flight Entertainment

As part of a plan to upgrade its in-flight entertainment, improve customer loyalty, and enhance its overall passenger experience, Alaska Airlines deployed 7,000 tablets running Windows Embedded 8.1 Industry. The tablets include offerings from Xbox games and movies to the latest TV shows and magazines. Flight attendants report that customers love the devices, and the airline plans to deploy more tablets to meet customer demand and Alaska’s route growth.

JJ Food Service


Food Delivery Service Uses Machine Learning to Revolutionize Customer Service

Shopping carts that already list what you’re going to order? Now that’s customer service. And it’s the service that JJ Food Service customers get every time they place their orders online or by phone. This is the power of Microsoft Azure Machine Learning and Microsoft Dynamics AX.

Royal Caribbean International


Cruise Line Improves Business Insight and Employee Efficiency with Intelligent System

Royal Caribbean International wanted to gain better insight into customer behavior and enhance workflow on its innovative new cruise ships. To improve operations, Royal Caribbean deployed a solution from Agilysys and ParTech (PAR) that connects Windows Embedded devices including 325 point-of-service (POS) terminals, 50 tablets, and 300 digital signs with backend servers running Microsoft SQL Server and Windows Server.

Advantage Sales & Marketing


Process automation and detailed reporting help marketing agency deliver value to clients


Advantage Sales & Marketing (ASM) deployed Microsoft Dynamics CRM to automate core tasks related to its experiential marketing and in-store demonstration program, and to enable detailed reporting through Microsoft SQL Server. The solution has produced significant operational efficiencies (reducing the time required for core tasks by 75 percent) and provided strategic value to ASM in the areas of analytics and marketing insights.

Coca Cola Amatil (CCA)


Coca-Cola Amatil Connects with Customers Through Interactive, Digital Signage

Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA), a leading beverage manufacturer in the Asia-Pacific region, wanted to create a differentiated brand experience for consumers. To surpass traditional marketing, the company implemented an intelligent system from Microsoft and digital marketing agency TKM9 that uses interactive digital signage to create an immersive experience at point-of-sale locations.

Iconic food brands join forces, feeding innovation and teamwork with Office 365 & Power BI

To unite the two organizations, Kraft Heinz relied on the communication and collaboration capabilities of Microsoft Office 365 to ensure employees had access to the information and people they needed to be productive from Day One.They believe Power BI is a great addition to Office 365, and use it to provide employees with the analytical capabilities and data they want and the flexibility they need.
Othaim Markets Company
Leading food retailer in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, chose Microsoft Power BI to gain immediate insight

Othaim Markets Company, a leading food retailer in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, chose Microsoft Power BI to gain immediate insight into the business and to improve everything across operations from stock distribution to category management.

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