When Carlsberg Group decided to expand its market share in Asia, we realized that we needed an IT system that we could align with those new markets. Microsoft Dynamics NAV was chosen because the complexity of this system met our requirements. The only disadvantage of NAV was that the system is not intended for our sector. That is why we had to develop our own solution or buy one. Microsoft recommended Drink-IT from NORRIQ, a proven IT solution for breweries. So in the end we opted for Drink-IT.

Torben Melskens
Strategy Director Carlsberg IT
Torben Melskens | Strategy Director Carlsberg IT

Expansion in the East

The beermarket in Asia is expanding and provides a lot of strategic opportunities. Carlsberg is currently active in countries such as India, Malaysia, Cambodia, Laos, Nepal, Singapore, Vietnam and China - also in Hong Kong. Through the joint ventures in China and Vietnam alone, Carlsberg is active in 24 breweries and has more than 5,000 employees. Carlsberg aspires to be a market leader in Asia primarily through the acquisition and development of existing market positions.

It quickly became clear that the IT system of established breweries around the world could not be used for the expansion of Carlsberg in the East. For the emerging markets in Asian countries, Carlsberg needed a less complex system:

NORRIQ developed Drink-IT specifically for breweries and distributors of beer and soft drinks. The solution is based on Microsoft Dynamics NAV and includes various individual modules such as quality- and recipe management, tax management, deposit package management, sales contract management and marketing, telesales, service modules management and distribution management, etc.

Carlsberg Manufacturing plant

More than just an IT solution

For Carlsberg it was important that the IT system for Asia could function as a basic solution. The system could not be too complex and had to be easy to use and implement. In addition, flexibility was an absolute requirement, as it had to be adaptable to regional customs and, if necessary, extendable.

"To understand the size of our activities in Asia, you need to know that the introduction of an IT system means a major change for employees. Many companies are evolving from very simple IT systems in combination with Excel spreadsheets to an advanced and integrated system. That is why the implementation of Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Drink-IT in Asia is much more than just an IT project. We view it as a joint effort between the business and IT, with the main focus being on standardizing and simplifying business processes. This is possible thanks to the implementation of a standardized IT system based on a 'work smarter' principle. So we have to pay a lot of attention to our most important users and in the actual implementation phase it is also very important for local management to carry the project, ”explains Torben Melskens.

Today Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Drink-IT are running successfully in five Carlsberg companies in India, Laos, Vietnam and China. In other Asian breweries the implementation process is in full swing.

"We have put together an implementation team consisting of both internal and external consultants and key local users. When starting up a new brewery, we always prepare a business case, a description of the specific expectations. After drawing up the final agreement with our implementation partner, it will take another four to five months before we go live. Experts stay on site for a few months until the local company feels confident enough to take over the daily management of the new solution. The consultants then move to the next project. I would just like to emphasize that implementation in four to five months is very fast if you take the circumstances into account. Although with Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Drink-IT from NORRIQ we have of course brought in a solution that is user-friendly and easy to implement. The costs for implementation are also very acceptable, "continues Torben Melskens.

Carlsberg Manufacturing plant

Backbone of the entire company

Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Drink-IT from NORRIQ ensure that Carlsberg can live up to its commitment - 'keep it simple'. The solution integrates the "best practices" from the sector and has a suitable level of standardization.

“With Drink-IT based on Dynamics NAV, we have opted for a system that is specifically tailored to our sector. The design of the system takes changes into account, it has a flexible front-end and a standardized back-end, and it is also easy to adapt to regional and local differences, "adds Torben Melskens. 

Torben Melskens concludes that the new IT solution in the Carlsberg breweries has many advantages: “The new IT solution is the backbone of the entire company. After the implementation, there was full transparency across all functions and we came to one global picture, which creates a closer bond between the head office and the breweries. Benchmarking becomes easier for us and we can also follow the KPIs, MRP and quality control in a better way. We have already successfully implemented Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Drink-IT in five companies in India, Vietnam, Laos and China, and we are working non-stop to implement the system in our other Asian breweries in emerging markets. You can't ignore it: Microsoft Dynamics NAV and Drink-IT are a hit for Carlsberg ”.

Carlsberg beer in ice

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