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Sundowner Trailers Selects Synchrono to Enable its LEAN Enterprise Initiative

Horse Trailer Press Release

Synchrono, a leading provider of real-time closed-loop planning, scheduling & execution solution for manufacturing operations, announced that it has been selected by Sundowner Trailers, manufacturer of high quality horse trailers, to improve velocity, responsiveness and flexibility.

Saint Paul, MN (PRWEB) May 22, 2004 -- Sundowner Trailers, Coleman, OK, is the leading manufacturer of build-to-order, high quality horse trailers. Privately owned, founded in 1977 by the Shipman family, Sundowner continues their growth. Growth that can be attributed to their strong leadership in the manufacturing of quality brand name trailers, such as SunLite, Sport Utility and Living Quarters trailers, as well as to its ongoing commitment to remain simply the best.

This growth has brought about complexity and increased operational challenges. Such as the manufacturing of over 5,000 units per year, comprised of 3,000 to 10,000 parts per unit, with each unit requiring as many as 32 operations in Sundowner’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities.

“What we are seeing with our success is a steady decline in our operating cost ratios, inventories are creeping up and our service levels are declining,” says Secretary/Treasurer Jerry Shipman. “We are seeing our cash velocity decelerate—we want to go in the opposite direction.”

“As we improve one process, another one seems to become the squeaky wheel—making real progress seems to get harder as we grow,” according to VP of Sales and Marketing John Shipman.

The Sundowner Team knew it needed to upgrade systems but couldn’t find anything that addressed, very specifically, providing more effective scheduling and execution coordination and communications for production and order flow of trailer orders through the business. “Traditional bookkeeping or ERP systems do not address the need to coordinate the activities of our 700 employees—they can tell Sundowner what they did — but this does us no good today when the work is occurring and disruptions manifest themselves everywhere all the time,” according to Controller Greg Cary.

Sundowner could see where the real-time Synchrono Manufacturing Operating System could simultaneously address all issues across the business, from improving on-time shipments, thus leading to improved dealer and customer satisfaction, reducing inventories, which would help drive reduced lead and cycle times, thus producing better cash velocity internally, as well as in the distribution chain—another benefit for its dealers. Prior to Synchrono, the Sundowner Team felt that accomplishing their immediate goals would be measured in years of effort and lots of sunk costs. The fact that they can install, test and go live with the Synchrono Manufacturing Operating System in under 120 days, and the demonstrated proof, that as soon as they go live the Synchrono System, they will begin reducing inventories and accelerating flow throughout the plant and their internal support processes, has led to a full cost recovery plan measured in months.

Sundowner wants to drive their production facilities to be world class. They want to, first, bring internal production and support operations into the Synchrono real-time solution. From this, they can drive to real-time solutions in their supply chains, both from their suppliers and to their dealers.

“Sundowner Trailers intuitively understands lean concepts. They are not a lean practitioner—as they see this as common sense manufacturing. Further, they can see how the inherent relationships between ‘leaning’ out the plant and improving internal business processes through Synchrono simultaneously would drive the acceleration of cash flow, immediately.

We are proud to have Sundowner join the Synchrono family and look forward to our future together,” says Bob Donaldson, Synchrono CEO.

About Synchrono
Synchrono is the leading provider of continuous, closed-loop planning, scheduling, execution, and operations solutions for the plant, the business and the supply chain. These solutions help manufacturers improve their customer service levels, reduce inventories, and increase throughput simultaneously. Synchrono solutions are a simple and intuitive answer to complex planning, execution, and operations problems. With Synchrono solutions, manufacturers realize business value quickly, and on a continuous basis. Synchrono Continuous Improvement Services allow manufacturers to pro-actively monitor and identify production, operations and, supply chain problems, and correct for them.

Learn more about Synchrono by visiting: