MAS Intimates Gets Samples Right the First Time With High-Def Camera

MAS Intimates, a division of MAS Holdings, is the manufacturing force producing lingerie and intimate apparel for many of the world's most recognized lingerie brands, from Victoria's Secret and lululemon athletica to H&M and Marks & Spencer. With its customers distributed around the globe, the Sri Lankan company sought a technology solution to accelerate communication with external partners and increase visibility into — and reduce the back-and-forth involved with — product development, order management, planning, production and delivery.

A longtime SAP Apparel and Footwear software user, MAS Intimates has diligently updated its systems over time with the aid of technology partner attune Consulting. In 2009, MAS added PLM, with high-definition video conferencing and interactive displays incorporated two years later. "Once the foundation technologies for product development and production were complete, plug-in visibility projects such as critical path reporting solutions were
launched to provide in-depth visibility of our processes to our customers," says Nathan Sivagananathan, CEO, MAS Design.

Since going live on the video conferencing platform, Sivagananathan says the company has virtually eliminated wait times for clarifications in product development. What's more, the Cisco high-def video system, incorporating the Wolf Vision camera, lets users see samples more precisely — showing 32 stitches per inch via high-definition zoom.

As a result, MAS's "first time right" percentage for samples has improved accordingly. Today 10 percent fewer samples need to be reworked, and the goal is to reach 70 percent by the end of 2014. "The 3D project was launched to improve accuracy by reducing the rework iterations in the product development process," Sivagananathan says.

Thanks to these platforms and the faster approval cycles they enable, MAS has trimmed its lead times and increased speed to market. "Time savings are calculated based on internal data entry reduction from automation, reducing courier lead time and fit comment document lead-time to cycle to and from the customer for each stage of the product development cycle," explains Sivagananathan. "We've achieved three days savings per calendar with a goal of five days savings by the end of 2013."

MAS uses spin tables in conjunction with Fast-Fit cameras to capture high-resolution 360-degree videos of garments on models and mannequins that are then compressed and emailed to customers for review prior to fit meetings. Like many forward-thinking companies, MAS has been using mobile applications for internal management purposes for the past five years, and in 2011 the company deployed tablets to help improve the speed and accuracy of data input. Today, the mobile and tablet apps tie into the SAP and PLM systems to improve the availability of real-time information for better decision-making.

Signaling its commitment to remaining on the forefront of game-changing technology, in April MAS Holdings invested $20 million in attune, which will merge with cloud, mobile and web services provider Sabre Technologies to strengthen its reach and expertise in IT for fashion and lifestyle brands.

"Today's leading brands face a highly competitive global market along with a growing reliance on emerging digital technologies to drive operational efficiencies and engage with consumers, partners and other stakeholders across the value chain," says Mahesh Amalean, chairman, MAS Holdings (pictured). "The time is right to create a world-class IT solutions company dedicated to serving the needs of fashion and lifestyle."

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