Continental Mills Selects Blacksmith Applications' Trade Promotion Management Solutions to Manage Trade Spending and Pricing

Baking mix leader expects to gain insight into profitability, validate claims and manage deductions

Jan 13, 2010, 06:44 ET from Blacksmith Applications

BOSTON, Jan. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Blacksmith Applications, a leading provider of trade spend and price management solutions for the food and packaging industries, announced today a multi-year agreement with Continental Mills to enhance trade spending, accrual and deduction management processes.

Driven by the need to evaluate profitability of trade spending and pricing requests and for more automated accrual forecasting, claim validation and deduction management, Continental Mills selected Blacksmith Applications' FORGE(SM) Software Suite for the ability to drive better decisions, reduce manual effort and improve the bottom line.

After a thorough review of Trade Promotion Management software vendors, Continental Mills selected Blacksmith based on its superior functionality and fit with Continental Mills' needs. Continental Mills will create trade spending, pricing and promotion requests in FORGE(SM) Trade and requests will be routed based on approval routing workflow, profitability and available budget. The software will also be used to interface accrual forecasts to the ERP to eliminate manual calculations. Continental Mills will use FORGE(SM) Settlements to validate billback claims and rapidly and accurately match validated claims to deductions and FORGE(SM) Analytics for monitoring trade spend performance. These abilities will enable more informed trade spending decisions, more efficient and accurate billback validation and more rapid and accurate deduction matching to valid claims. 

"Blacksmith Applications provides unparalleled automated claim validation capabilities and deduction management functionality.  Those factors, coupled with their unrivaled functionality around profitability analysis and workflow management made Blacksmith Applications the clear choice for Continental Mills," said Greg Sevener, VP of Foodservice at CM.

"Given the importance of reliable, predictable integration of pricing and deduction transactions, we needed a vendor with a demonstrated ability to integrate," commented Tammy Barr, Director of IT.

Paul Wietecha, President and CEO of Blacksmith said, "Continental Mills keenly recognized that with all of the pressure on manufacturers to lower prices and provide more trade dollars, they must make more defensible decisions, analyze expected profitability to identify proposals that just do not make sense and avoid paying invalid claims."

About Continental Mills

Continental Mills, Inc. manufactures and markets baking mix products for the food industry in the United States. The company offers prepared flour mixes and related products, which include pancake, biscuit, cake, and gourmet muffin mixes. Continental Mills offers leading brands including Krusteaz®, Ghirardelli® Baking Mixes and Alpine.  The company was founded in 1932 and is based in Tukwila, Washington.

About Blacksmith Applications

Blacksmith Applications enables organizations to confidently manage their trade spending and pricing initiatives profitably through software solutions and strategic consulting. Blacksmith specializes in solving the unique needs of foodservice manufacturers, while also meeting clients' needs for CPG and other lines of business. Clients rely on Blacksmith software and services to plan, execute, settle and analyze their trade spending and pricing programs. Blacksmith solutions enable profitable decision-making, provide insight into trade spend and promotion performance, facilitate customer and product profitability analysis and enable visibility and accountability through configurable workflow and approval settings. For more information, visit http://www.blacksmithapps.com.

SOURCE Blacksmith Applications



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