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Case Study:
IBM Cognos provides single view of merged group's finances

Background

When Stonegate Pub Company acquired the Yates’ and Slug and Lettuce brands from our long-standing client, Town and City, change++ were asked to combine data from Stonegate’s existing Coda finance database with Town and City’s finance data to give a single view of company performance. Managing data integration when mergers and acquisitions take place can be a major challenge as businesses often use different account headings and financial calendars and data has to be realigned to match the enlarged group’s structures. Usually the key requirement is to facilitate finance reporting across the business but sales (EPoS) data can also be restructured to suit new reporting requirements.

change++ had worked with Town and City on a previous data integration project when the former parent company, the Laurel Pub Company, acquired Yates Group. The finance and IT teams knew that change++ had both the knowledge of the business and experience of a similar exercise to be able to deliver to their timescales and budget.

Solution

change++ typically manage projects such as data integration using tools from IBM’s Cognos Enterprise suite which can access data from the whole range of data sources present in today’s organisations and then deliver it in the format and with the frequency required.

 Stonegate cocktails

For the enlarged Stonegate Pub Company IBM Cognos cubes were used to combine data from both the Stonegate and Town & City finance systems. This data was then realigned to the new organisational structures and the new 13 period financial calendar to deliver a single view across the entire estate.

The combined cubes give Stonegate head office users the capability to produce reports and analyse finance and sales (EPoS) data in whatever format the business requires with the confidence that the information is consistent and accurate.

Benefits

The speed with which solutions can be deployed using IBM Cognos Enterprise cubes means that businesses like Stonegate Pub Company can quickly gain an accurate view of group-wide performance.

Further benefits of using IBM Cognos Enterprise include;

  • Bringing data together for reporting using IBM Cognos cubes meant that Stonegate did not need to import historic data from old company systems into new systems, saving a significant amount of time and money.
  • As data from the enlarged estate was imported into existing IBM Cognos cube models, users were able to carry on running their regular reports. Data from the new company just flowed through into their existing reports representing a further cost-saving as no new reports needed to be developed.
  • Stonegate finance and IT teams are very familiar with IBM Cognos reporting tools and value the flexibility they offer so the transition to the merged estate was effectively seamless and no user training was required. Lack of disruption to day-to-day business was a major benefit for Stonegate’s finance team.

 

Hazell West, Head of IT at Stonegate Pub Company, says, “We have ambitious growth plans and choose partners we know can support us. change++ have proved themselves over many years and we rely on their expertise in Business Intelligence.”

Della Payne, change++ Managing Director, confirms, “It’s great to see a business we’ve worked with so closely continue to expand and we look forward to helping Stonegate consolidate their position as a leader in the hospitality sector.”

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