Unifying tradition and design, Croata is keeping alive the century-old Croatian tradition of creating neckties and scarves.
Croata prides itself on its handcrafted neckties, shawls and scarves which are produced in small numbers from the finest silk. The brand is part of Potomac, which was established in Zagreb in 1990 by two pioneers dissatisfied with the current approach to cravats, and to classical fashion in general.
Marijan Bušić, one of the company founders, says: "The cravat in the international market as a symbol contained no story, had no feeling, no spirit, and its fashion expression was poor and uninventive." The company set up to bring cravats back to their origins. The first Croata boutique opened in January 1992. Today Potomac has two production centers, 16 retail stores, and sells both through B2B and B2C.
Looking for an adaptable system based on best practices
With a clear vision of future developments and growth, Potomac started looking for a system with global footprint, local support, and adaptable functionality. Because Potomac’s core business is selling high luxury items, the company required a retail system that could provide them with in-depth information about the company’s customers, and that could be integrated to CRM.
The company maintains detailed information on its customers, including whether the product bought was a gift, the buyer demographics, the reasons for a successful sale or a missed one, loyalty programs, gift cards, etc. All this wealth of data, which at the time was maintained separately, needed to be easily accessed, and integrated with online tracking data. The system also needed to be very user friendly, to minimize staff training times. Potomac caters for celebrities and luxury lovers around the world.
The company wants them to have the best e-commerce experience. So they started looking for a strong and reliable platform, ensuring that it could be easy to upgrade and that it could fulfill Potomac’s design requirements. After a lot of screening, Potomac decided to implement Microsoft Dynamic ERP, with LS Retail software to manage the retail part.
The fact that the two solutions function as a single environment, and no integration is necessary, was a big advantage for Potomac. The system was deployed and is supported by DignetSoftware, a local LS Retail implementation partner. “In projects, you need a vision and appropriate people to implement the vision. Choosing the right partner is a crucial step in any process. With DignetSoftware we have found a partner with whom we can openly discuss ideas and feasibility. We know that they will always put Potomac’s best interest first,“ says Franjo Bušić, CEO at Potomac.
Bringing it all together with a unified system
Implementing an ERP system can be challenging, especially in a company as big and diverse as Potomac. But an ERP brings the big advantage of having a central place where data is posted and reported.
Today, all of Potomac’s data is gathered on one place, including data on maintenance, forms, customers, contacts, item information, etc. This data can then easily be shared across all of the company’s locations. The new solution has also been providing high quality reports.
The management team at Potomac now has a clear picture of the business, which enables them to plan future steps and investments based on accurate and timely figures. In 2019, Potomac moved their webshop from the existing platform to Dynamicweb, an eCommerce solution that offers out of the box integration with the LS Retail solutions.
The goal was to have a more global system, and to unify B2B, B2C, content and e-marketing within a single solution. The new software platform has been supporting the company through its successes. “The system has sustained us impeccably. We are very pleased with the support capabilities,” says Bušić.