Panasonic expands into supply chain software

22 May 2020

Panasonic has expanded its product offerings to include supply chain software by buying a stake in Blue Yonder.

The company traditionally known for electronic hardware from fridges to TVs will be adding software, consulting and services to its product offering.

Under the deal Panasonic will own a 20% share of Blue Yonder, whose clients include BP, Coca-Cola, Unilever, Procter & Gamble and Walmart.

Kazuhiro Tsuga, CEO of Panasonic Corporation, said: “We will be adding the provision of software, consulting, and services to our traditional business model of selling hardware. This will allow us to support fundamental innovations in the supply chain field – many of which have been highlighted as mission-critical amidst Covid-19 disruptions – and thereby enable us to evolve our solutions to directly address our customers’ challenges.”

The deal values Blue Yonder – formerly JDA Software – at $5.5bn. It builds upon a joint venture announced by the two companies in April 2019. 

Yasu Higuchi, representative director of Panasonic Corporation and CEO of Panasonic’s Connected Solutions Company, said: “Modern day supply chains face a number of challenges including rapidly shifting demand, hyper-personalisation of consumer needs, labour shortages and operational inefficiencies, so by further developing our relationship with supply chain software specialists Blue Yonder, I believe we will be able to make larger, more transformative contributions to a greater number of customers.”

Among Blue Yonder’s products is a digital optimisation platform that uses AI and machine learning to enable companies to manage supply chains from end-to-end in real time. 

Girish Rishi, CEO at Blue Yonder, said: “I am excited about this collaboration to realize our joint vision for digital supply chain — where Blue Yonder’s platform synchronizes with Panasonic’s edge offerings to deliver more autonomous, successful business outcomes for retailers, manufacturers and logistics providers.”

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