Levi Strauss says its new organisation will allow it to fully leverage innovations ©123RF
Levi Strauss says its new organisation will allow it to fully leverage innovations ©123RF

Levi Strauss pulls innovation and supply chain into single team

11 September 2018

Apparel brand Levi Strauss & Co has said it will consolidate its product, innovation and supply chain into a single organisation.

The new organisation will combine design, merchandising, product development and planning into a single team, allowing the firm to “fully leverage” new innovations – including the firm’s recently announced end-to-end digital design and manufacturing tool.

The firm said the change also “further integrates supply chain into the consumer journey”.

Liz O’Neill, chief supply chain officer, has been appointed executive vice president and president of the new organisation, and will be responsible for the “end-to-end view of the product lifecycle, from ideation to what ultimately shows up in stores”, the firm said.

The consolidation is part of a wider set of structural changes Levi Strauss announced as part of a growth plan, which includes the creation of a new “direct-to-customer” organisation and a strategy and analytics organisation.

Chip Bergh, president and CEO of Levi Strauss, said: “As we adapt to the changing retail environment in pursuit of our long-term goals, the leadership changes we are announcing will accelerate our drive to deliver sustainable, profitable growth.

“With these shifts, we are creating a ‘design for the future’ organisation, one that is poised to take advantage of innovation and reflect how consumers shop.”

In February, Levi Strauss announced a digital design and manufacturing tool, Project FLX, that uses lasers to finish denim jeans. The method will replace labour and chemical-intensive hand finishing methods and reduce reduce lead times from more than six months to weeks by allowing garments to be finished “on-demand” closer to market, the firm said.

Levi Strauss said with the new technology it also plans to reduce the number of chemicals from its supply chain from “thousands to a few dozen”.

Last month Levi Strauss announced targets to cut its supply chain emissions by 40% by 2025.

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