Benetton's 'Dual Supply Chain' System

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

Case Details:


Case Code : OPER065 For delivery in electronic format: Rs. 400;
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Supply Chain Management

Case Length : 19 Pages
Period : 1998-2006
Organization : Benetton SpA
Pub Date : 2008
Teaching Note : Not Available
Countries : Italy
Industry : Apparel Retailing


The case discusses the dual supply chain system practiced by Italy based clothing company Benetton SpA (Benetton). During the 1980s and early 1990s, Benetton was the world leader in the casual apparel market with stores spread across the world. The company was well known for its postponement strategy, wherein the dyeing of the garment was postponed till the colors in vogue for the season were identified. By the late 1990s, Benetton could not compete with the fast fashion retailers which were launching several collections a year, as against only two collections brought out by Benetton. In order to meet the changing demands of the customers, Benetton revamped its supply chain, and opted for a Dual Supply Chain system.

In this system, production was carried out in Asian and European countries, depending on the time required to market the product. The dual supply chain focused both on pull as well as push based demand. After implementing the new supply chain system, Benetton was able to launch five collections in each season, with some of the collections incorporating the latest trends. The case explains the postponement strategy of Benetton, the supply chain problems it faced in the late 1990s and the Dual Supply Chain system.


Analyze the supply chain operations of Benetton.

Understand the postponement strategy of Benetton.

Study the production and distribution process followed by Benetton.

Critically evaluate the 'Dual Supply Chain' of Benetton.


  Page No.
Benetton Moves to Fast Fashion 1
Background Note 2
The Operations 3
The Postponement Strategy 7
The Problems 8
The Dual Supply Chain 10
The Results 11
Exhibits 13


Benetton SpA, Supply Chain Management, Dual Supply Chain, Fast Fashion, Vertically Integrated Model, Production, Distribution Center, Retailing, Postponement Strategy, Retail Management, Delocalization, Sorting System, Product Delivery


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