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Strengthening Digital SCM Services for Retail and Distribution Industries in Japan.

Marubeni Corporation (hereinafter, “Marubeni”), o9 Solutions Japan K.K. (hereinafter, “o9”), and Nomura Research Institute, Ltd. (hereinafter, “NRI”) jointly introduced the o9 SCM software “o9 AI-powered platform” (hereinafter referred to as “full-scale operation”) in Japan, in order to strengthen Marubeni’s “Digital SCM service * ¹” to major domestic e-commerce companies. This also marks the first introduction of the o9 SCM software “o9 AI Platform” to the Japanese market.

Many Japanese companies are facing challenges in digitizing supply chain information and improving supply chain planning, which is becoming more complex due to globalization and the strengthening of private brands (hereinafter, “PB”). Marubeni and o9 have signed a “Strategic Cooperation Agreement” to strategically sell “Digital SCM Service” and “o9 AI Platform” to Japanese companies mainly in the retail and distribution industries. Marubeni and o9 will also collaborate with advanced comprehensive services that utilize NRI’s digital technology and data.

Marubeni does not only provide stand-alone services such as “consultation” or “software sales”, but also provides “commercial distribution/logistics batch consignment” or “BPO *²” for customers who have difficulty in introducing SCM software based only on their own knowledge and resources. Through the “consignment services” by BPO, Marubeni will promptly and continuously solve customer issues such as “expansion of PB ratio”, “reduction of inventory”, and “reduction of price reduction sales rate”, thus realizing supply chain reformation.

o9 Solutions, Inc provides innovative SCM solutions, and since the release of software equipped with AI algorithms in 2015, it has been expanded rapidly in Western companies that are trying to utilize IBP *³. The “o9 AI Platform” is superior to other companies’ systems in its ability to flexibly deal with various constraints, optimizations and high-speed data processing, and o9 will continuously develop services for a wide range of industries through a strong partnership with Marubeni and NRI.

NRI has a wealth of knowledge and achievements in system introduction in the supply chain area, and has a large number of data scientists specializing in data analysis and algorithm construction. Taking this project as an opportunity, NRI will strengthen their collaboration with Marubeni and o9, and achieve customer satisfaction through making a new digital SCM service work seamlessly with the existing system on launch, and by constructing SCM functions suitable for individual companies derived from data analysis.
Going forward, these three companies will jointly contribute to reforming customers’ SCM and improving their global competitiveness.

*1. Digital SCM Service
Through digitization of supply chain management and overall optimization in a data-driven manner, Marubeni will realize cost reduction and maximization of sales for customers, and break away from manual operation.

*2. BPO(Business Process Outsorcing)
To outsource business operations and business processes to specialist third-party companies.

*3. IBP(Integrated Business Planning)
A method of optimizing the management of the entire supply chain and the integrated business plan by evolving and integrating the sales and business plans (S & OP) of supply, demand, inventory optimization, product improvement, strategic projects, etc, through sharing information and speeding up decision-making by business units such as production, sales, and inventory in a company.

About Marubeni Corporation

Marubeni Corporation and its consolidated subsidiaries use their broad business networks, both within Japan and overseas, to conduct importing and exporting (including third country trading), as well as domestic business, encompassing a diverse range of business activities across wide-ranging fields. Additionally, the Marubeni Group offers a variety of services, makes internal and external investments, and is involved in resource development throughout all of the above industries.

About Nomura Research Institute, Ltd.

Since its foundation as Japan’s first private think tank in 1965, Nomura Research Institute (NRI) has been proposing corporate strategies, making policy proposals, and developing and operating systems for many years, in four businesses categories, “consulting,” “financial IT solutions,” “industrial IT solutions,” and “IT infrastructure services,” with the philosophy of “a company that creates a future society” . It provides insight into the new social paradigm and is responsible for its realization, and also supports administrative activities, society and daily life. The number of Group employees exceeds 12,000. Approximately 40 bases in 15 countries and regions to expand our business globally.

o9 Solutions

o9 offers a leading AI-powered Planning, Analytics & Data platform called the Digital Brain that helps companies across industry verticals transform traditionally slow and siloed planning into smart, integrated and intelligent planning and decision making across the core supply chain, commercial and P&L functions. With o9’s Digital Brain platform, companies are able to achieve game-changing improvements in quality of data, ability to detect demand and supply risks and opportunities earlier, forecast demand more accurately, evaluate what-if scenarios in real time, match demand and supply intelligently and drive alignment and collaboration across customers, internal stakeholders and suppliers around the integrated supply chain and commercial plans and decisions. Supported by a global ecosystem of partners, o9’s innovative delivery methodology helps companies achieve quick impact in customer service, inventory levels, resource utilization, as well as ESG and financial KPIs—while enabling a long-term, sustainable transformation of their end-to-end planning and decision-making capabilities.