Steamer Trading

Specialist kitchenware retailer Steamer Trading began life in 1985 on Alfriston High Street in Sussex and today the company operates 39 Branches – 80 tills plus 26 stations at Head Office, mainly in high street locations in the South of England. New stores have recently opened in the North and company continues to expand in store and online.

Steamer Trading Shop Front

In 2001 with just four stores, the company wanted to expand, so adopted Futura’s EPOS and retail management solution to support staff in store and at their headquarters in Lewes and they haven’t looked back. Strong management information, powerful inventory control and accurate stock allocations to a growing estate and online - the company added a transactional website in 2012 - have been crucial.

Keeping overheads low

Expansion requires confidence and for Steamer’s management team that means having the right systems in place so they can focus on quality. Management information, accuracy of stock control and the ease of use of the POS system continue to be important factors. But helping to maintain low overheads is also crucial and Futura has enabled them to grow without having to multiply head office resources. “During a period of 12 new store openings we’ve only needed to add two staff members at head office,” confirms managing director Ben Phillips.

Fast store rollout

Store rollout is straightforward. Using sales information history, the team can judge stock requirements based on the size and profile of the new store, compared to the allocation profile of an existing one.  Then, using Futura sales data, Merchandising managers determine which stock items will perform best and the presentation quantities needed for the new store. 

Steamer carries a high number of stock lines and Futura also manages their warehouse stock, while seamlessly integrating with the POS. A link between Futura and Steamer online ensures accurate stock allocations and excellent visibility of current stock levels across the business.

4-hour stock turnaround

With some 10,000 SKUs, recommended reordering is particularly useful with automatic alerts at HQ when stores are reaching their minimum stock requirement. Stock turnaround – from goods received, booked in and turned out to store – can also be achieved within four hours. 

With recent investment in Futura’s business intelligence system Analyser, to improve management information and reporting, Futura remains key to Steamer’s continuing success.

  • Expanding UK kitchenware brand
  • Futura customer since 2001
  • Powerful inventory control 
  • Managing warehouse stock
  • Accurate stock allocations between store & web
  • Recommended reordering
  • Management information and Futura Analyser

“Futura’s point of sale does exactly what you want it to do, it’s reliable, quick and it works. Often it’s the straightforward things that are underestimated. For us the fact that Futura works well for cashing up, managing stock and transferring stock, and that it does all this beautifully means it’s a great system to use.” Ben Phillips, Managing Director, Steamer Trading


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