Nobody understands the frustration of consumers who can’t find the products they’re looking for more than the experts at Teamcore, an artificial intelligence (AI)-based startup with operations in Latin America and the United States. Teamcore’s cloud-based software platform uses machine learning to power intelligent workflow automation that tells consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies and retailers why products aren’t selling and what they can do about it fast.
“We help CPG companies and retailers make sure products are available when their customers are ready to buy,” said Sergio Della Maggiora, founder and CEO of Teamcore. “Whether someone is shopping online or in a physical store, our retail execution platform based on intelligent workflows helps connect data across the supply chain – from warehouse to shelf, virtually or in-store – so companies don’t miss out on sales opportunities.”
Intelligent Automated Workflows Boost CPG Sales
Based on sales data analytics, Della Maggiora said that Teamcore’s machine learning algorithm detects when products aren’t selling as planned and, in over 94% of cases, finds the root cause of the problem before assigning a task. Unlike garden variety alerts, Teamcore’s intelligent workflow notifications keep going until they reach the people who solve the problem. If someone in replenishment can’t find the product in the warehouse to restock virtual or in-store shelves, the workflow automatically routes that task to the appropriate store sales representatives, all the way up to regional store and supply chain managers.
“Teamcore connects the whole CPG and retail team for opportunity detection sales and doesn’t stop until someone actually fixes the problem,” said Della Maggiora. “Over time, the collected data trains the model, improving its accuracy and ability to make predictions about potential issues.”
Automated Retail Execution Leaves No Opportunity Unturned
Teamcore tackles some of the biggest challenges retailers face. Consider the problem of phantom inventory, which happens when company systems show products at a location, but they aren’t actually there. Another issue is underperforming promotions. CPG companies can have the best intentions in giving discounts to retailers, but if the right-priced products aren’t available to customers for whatever reason, the items won’t sell. Addressing these problems is not as simple as it sounds.
“Retailers deal with thousands of product-related issues happening every day in virtual and brick and mortar stores,” said Della Maggiora. “Data from our automatic workflows lets retailers see where the problems are and act faster to correct them. If the algorithm detects that a product is underperforming compared to the same promotions in other locations, sales teams can take appropriate steps, like prioritizing in-store visits, replacing missing signage, or other activities, to help the retailer take full advantage of the promotion.”
Teamcore’s customers include well-known global brands in food and beverage, personal care, and other CPG sectors across Latin America and the United States. On average, these companies have increased product sales from 3% to 5% by improving on-shelf product availability from 4% to 9% and online product availability from 5% to 15%.
“One major CPG company reallocated its field sales team to activities where they could impact greater sales,” said Della Maggiora. “Once our data revealed how much time reps wasted on low value store visits, the company shifted the same team to dynamic, higher-value activities that had bottom line business results.”
Data Science Meets Fast-Changing Consumer Demands
Born in Chile, Della Maggiora initially studied business, then began exploring technology during his undergraduate work. He and his cofounders took advantage of a government grant program in Chile to start a software company that developed mobile solutions. Eventually, he applied his eight years of retail operations experience at Walmart to cofound Teamcore. After seeing huge process inefficiencies firsthand, he and his team conceptualized a mobile and desktop app based on data science. Then the pandemic hit.
“We knew that designing a simple user experience on top of a solid data science platform would help retail operations become more efficient, selling what consumers want to purchase,” he said. “When COVID-19 disrupted supply chains, many CPG organizations shifted to e-commerce and faced customer demands in unexpected ways – everything from rising home cooking trends to spikes in uptake of particular products. Our solution helps brands better understand and adapt to these fluctuating sales cycles.”
SAP.iO Hones Targeted CPG Product Design and Messaging
Della Maggiora and his team began working with experts across SAP while participating in the SAP.iO Foundry Berlin data and analytics cohort. He saw alignment with SAP’s intelligent enterprise vision and expected Teamcore to deliver greater value by integrating with SAP solutions in consumer products and retail. Teamcore is already integrated with SAP Sales Cloud.
“We’ve learned so much from SAP’s consumer products and retail experts about how customers can generate value from our data when it’s integrated with their enterprise resource planning (ERP), financial, and supply chain systems,” said Della Maggiora. “These insights have helped us in product design and crafting our messages for stronger market resonance on a global scale.”
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This blog also appeared on SAP BrandVoice on Forbes.