UNDER ARMOUR INC.
AT A GLANCE
Consumer products - apparel and footwear
US$430.7 million (2006)
SAP®Solution and Services
SAP® Apparel and Footwear Solution for Consumer Products Package
Metamor Enterprise Solutions LLC
The brainchild of former University of Maryland football player Kevin Plank, Under Armour Inc. is the originator of performance apparel designed to keep athletes cool, dry, and light throughout their games and workouts. With more than 1,000 team members around the globe, 100% bottom-line growth year over year, and nearly US$0.5 billion in revenues, Under Armour was one of the best-performing and fastest-growing public companies in 2006 and is promising to give other athletic companies a run for their money in 2007.
- Lack of application support for product-line growth and
global expansion to multiple countries
- Need for flexibility to outpace the competition and the
ability to reinvent the company every 6 months
- Time-consuming and nonscalable hard allocation process,
with no support for available-to-promise (ATP) checks
- Limited ability to deliver streamlined multicompany and multicurrency financial processes
Why SAP Was Selected
- Offers scalable solution to support constant innovation
reinvention, growth, and global expansion
- Enables strategic goal of "staying nimble and quick"
- Delivers industry best practices in sync with Under
Armour's "Big Bets with Big Partners" philosophy
- Provides fail-safe support for ATP
- Has proven track record and is "solution of choice" for other apparel and footwear companies
Implementation Best Practices
- Lessons-learned documentation from 3 mock go-lives
- Strong management commitment and guidance
- Jumpstarted implementation with Metamor's preconfigured
Quickwear™ and the ASAP methodology from SAP
- "Safe" environment for training with mock go-lives
- Approached as a business project, not just an IT project
Low Total Cost of Ownership
- Quickly onboarded new operations and countries to SAP®
- Under Armour Canada in 2.5 months
- Third-party warehouse in Europe in 1 month
- Accelerated implementation in 8 months
- Retired legacy systems immediately after go-live
Financial and Strategic Benefits
- Support for product innovation, growth strategy, and
flexibility with improved scalability of applications
- Enhanced ability to manage customer expectations with
- Better equipped to perform virtual inventory segmentation
for each channel and region
- Improved management and operational visibility with most
reports delivered through Web-based SAP NetWeaver®
Key Performance Indicator
|Time to close books
-33% and getting faster
|Reporting query times
-83%, with more than double the
volume growth in number of queries
Under Armour Makes "Big Bets with Big Partners"
and Needs a Fail-Safe Solution
In 1996 innovation from Maryland-based Under Armour
Inc. created a disruption and revolution in the sports
apparel industry by originating a new sportswear category
– performance apparel – that looked different, felt different,
and performed differently than cotton by keeping athletes
lighter and drier. Just 10 years later, Under Armour has
become the fastest-growing designer and distributor of branded
performance apparel in the world, dominating the category
with more than a 75% market share. The name Under Armour
has now become synonymous with the category – a remarkable
accomplishment considering the strength of incumbents like
Nike, adidas, and Reebok.
In 2005, to sustain its growth and compete on a global scale,
Under Armour needed a scalable and flexible IT landscape. The
company was making "Big Bets with Big Partners," and it sought
a fail-safe solution. It needed better visibility of data to drive
business performance and decisions. To improve its brand and
channel management, it needed to replace ineffective, manual
allocation processes with rock-solid available-to-promise (ATP)
processes. And to maintain international expansion, it needed multicurrency and multicompany capabilities.
"We are a different company every six months. We need to work a lot smarter, not just a lot harder - that is why we decided on SAP."
- Kevin Plank, President and CEO, Under Armour Inc.
Under Armour Takes Innovation to the Next Level
with SAP® Solutions
Constantly innovating, Under Armour reinvents itself and
becomes a different company every six months. Only a scalable
IT solution could support this rapid change, and Under
Armour found it in the SAP® Apparel and Footwear Solution
for Consumer Products package – the robust functionality
it needed, including ATP, came right “out of the box,” and Under Armour appreciated the built-in best practices. The
SAP NetWeaver® Exchange Infrastructure component and the
solution package were the definitive choice in helping Under
Armour achieve its ambitious expansion plans.
Going public in November 2005 did not stop Under Armour
from kicking off the SAP project in August 2005 and giving it
broad executive support and guidance. Just eight months later, a
core 20-person project team from operations, IT, and Metamor,
the implementation partner, successfully implemented the
solution using the ASAP methodology. Three mock go-lives
accelerated training and created a "safe" environment that did
not affect business operations.
"SAP [software] gives us the capabilities to expand our business...we are not going to need another ERP system no matter how large we get."
- Kevin Plank, President and CEO, Under Armour Inc.
Under Armour Wins with Business Benefits
The SAP Apparel and Footwear Solution for Consumer
Products has helped Under Armour improve brand
management while rushing innovative products to its
customers – especially with ATP. It can now virtually allocate
inventory across channels and regions. It can close its books
faster than ever, quickly bring new operations or countries
onboard, and make faster, more knowledgeable decisions with
greatly improved operational visibility.
Coming off a strong year in 2006 (when net revenues increased
53.2% to $430.7 million compared to net revenues of $281.1
million in 2005), Under Armour has embarked on a four-pronged
strategy to grow its apparel and footwear businesses
and expand internationally. Company management believes
that the most important growth phase is yet to come. And
with state-of-the-art solutions like SAP Apparel and Footwear
Solution for Consumer Products, the US$1 billion revenue
mark will be another milestone in its high-performance run.