Visulon: Accelerating an Adaptive Go-to-Market System

Arun Joshi, CEO Innovations often begin with curiosity, move to discovery of ideas, followed by implementation within the organization, and then the Go-to-Market processes. As companies around the globe already know, innovation is an elusive goal—Arun Joshi, CEO of Visulon, decided to change the rule. For Joshi, it was his curiosity—similar to that of an inventor's mind—to modernize ideas that triggered the inception of Visulon, a technology platform to automate marketing and sales operations processes. With cloud being the fastest growing infrastructure in the planet, Visulon offers Cloud based Software as a Service (SaaS) solutions to accelerate the Go-to-Market processes for apparel, fashion and outdoor industry. “Our platform enables brands to integrate, manage and optimize their product data and B2B sales process across all territories,” says Joshi.

Joshi attributes his success to the continual exploration of new ideas and new methodology—a skill developed during his 14 year tenure with Intel Corp. “In the Consumer Packaged Goods industry, apparel and footwear market is pretty composite with trillions of transaction every year. However, the bottle neck comes when companies rely on old methodologies and legacy systems—making the process more complex,” explains Joshi. Visulon’s technology platform helps in streamlining the marketing and sales operation’s processes by providing web based, online database driven applications. “We provide an agile, structured and cloud-based database with multiple product images and attributes customized according to the client’s needs,” adds Joshi. “Our unique software platform bridges the gap left open by expensive PLM and ERP product companies, which requires lot of IT resources. As cloud-based hosted software, Visulon finishes customization and deployment within short time, requiring almost no professional services for continuity,” says Joshi.

Technology often leads to too many changes; but the current era of digital transformation has put the consumer on the driver’s seat, rather than the technology. However, Joshi opines that the apparel industry is still a tough corner to hustle–with majority preferring to follow the traditional methodologies. “Even today, a major chunk of them take time to understand the digital process, there are concerns about the sustainability of the technology and the training issues involved,” says Joshi. Visulon’s interactive nature overcomes the hurdles by providing a robust platform that has the ability to offer accurate data and customized workbooks in short time. “I call it ‘Digital Metabolism’ and really think that we’re going to be seeing more and more positive effects from it in the corporate world,” adds Joshi.

Digital Workbooks goes Dynamic

Catalogs are often considered as the key workhorse tool of the textile and apparel industry. With the digital transformation on its peak, comes a new set of rules and trends. One such unique thought is Visulon’s Dynamic Workbook software that offers fully interactive seasonal product workbooks with updated images and attributes. “Large companies have to change their data on daily basis, our tool makes it easy for them to automatically refresh the product information globally.
Our cloud based technology can also be connected with their existing legacy systems, thus making customization simpler,” explains Joshi. With its ability to create printable custom workbooks, the software allows retail customers to have an instant catalog showing the products they just ordered. In addition, the platform updates the product selection and pricing details every minute. “Dynamic Workbook runs in the Visulon’s Enterprise Cloud with highly secure and configurable permission’s structure of the portal,” adds Joshi. The end-results can be used as electronic workbooks or can be saved as PDF or PowerPoint that can be printed, shared, and emailed directly from the application as a secured link.
Visulon also offers the familiar flipbook-style navigation technique allowing quick product selections, even for the largest brands. “We host our software in Rackspace’s globally optimized hybrid cloud. Visulon also accelerates the last mile accessibility using Akamai’s CDN. In the cloud architecture, our clients can modify the data from anywhere, anytime with their tools, making the functionality revolutionary and unique,” states Joshi.


We provide an agile, highly customizable cloud-based product master database that can render product images and videos in all formats along with accurate attribute data


Elaborating on the challenges in fulfilling the workbook process, Joshi points out data accuracy as their key focus. “Unlike the manual process, our platform has a live table with updated information, which also alarms the users with the change every minute. We believe in turning around the available technology to provide the best value,” adds Joshi, who also emphasizes that many organizations find difficult to adapt cloud-based solutions due to their legacy system’s inability to integrate new tool. “One of our long-term clients, Coach was earlier using old traditional methods for the seasonal product release process - with heavy reliance on paper, display boards and printing, endless Excel sheets causing delays and cost overruns When we presented our tools to the team, they were highly impressed and the implementation started rather quickly” states Joshi.

Joshi also brings in an interesting scenario to reflect Visulon’s robust workbook—large tier 1 fashion companies often need up-to-date product information, historical sales data, line plans, image banks, marketing creations, and social media for successful new product launches. Visulon’s unique platform connects disparate islands of information to form a common data master. “We allow different departments to seamlessly integrate for accurate product attributes. Then the past seasonal sales history is brought into simplify line planning functionality,” affirms Joshi. Visulon’s Dynamic Workbook also has Order Worksheet to eliminate duplicate, potential errors and support advanced needs such as overall discount, product level and rules-based discounts, multiple door planning, and more.

An Instant Digital Assortment Planner

In addition to the Digital Workbook, Visulon’s Visual Assortment Builder offers an easy-to-use interactive tool that helps in creating custom product selections for the major accounts. . A perfect shelf in the apparel industry often involves a distinct set of domains with a short merchandising lifecycle from manufacturer to retailer while creating an overall better customer experience.
The first domain of this merchandising lifecycle is category and assortment management. Assortment Builder allows customers to select items from a company’s catalog to create an instant digital assortment. “The platform can also export the custom selection into Excel, PowerPoint or PDF, making it easy to work independently on the assortment for further customization,” says Joshi. Visual Assortments also offer an amazing ‘Presentation Mode’ with an ability to notate, highlight, resize, fit into grid, add call-outs, or decorate with themes, making it more user friendly, and it interactive.

One of Visulon’s biggest clients, Coach, uses the Visual Assortment planner in various departments. “Product develop¬ment groups use the tool to visualize mas¬ter data from PLM and to communicate on product specifications. Merchants use it to define the ‘Line’ by categories, global planners use it for identifying suitable products, and account managers use it to prepare for the big box sales meet¬ings. Across the board there is no limit on the utilization of tools in de¬veloping the product life-cycle,” gleams Joshi.

Visulon also offers an array of products—Merchandiser to create merchandising planner from the Visual Assortment application, Financial Planner to automate the financial target planning, customizable order entry templates and Image Courier tool, a hosted digital asset management application to transfer digital product images to sales teams and retailers.


With big names like Arena, Bauer Hockey, Mizuno, Craghoppers, Asolo, Coach, and Frontier to their clientele list, Visulon’s suite of applications offer cutting-edge technology for efficiently building seasonal product sales and marketing campaigns.

Carving the Future Path

As the new calendar year begins, Joshi will continue to think big and dream bigger. With cost efficiency and value based service as it central mission, Visulon has plans to take their visualization methodologies to next level. “We are looking at ways to offer more presentation techniques suitable for all devices and bringing in collaboration platform for customers to work simultaneously from anywhere across the globe—saving time, money and enhancing accuracy,” says Joshi.

With the tremendous evolution of mobile technology and the eCommerce boom, Joshi also predicts a change in the consumer approach towards apparels and footwear industry—making it more digitally savvy. “As a result, it is essential for brands to adopt the emerging digital processes to stay ahead in the race,” opines Joshi, who also predicts the personalization of technology as the next big wave in this industry.

“Our platform enables brands to integrate, manage and optimize their product data and B2B sales process across all territories”
Joshi also has a piece of business advice for emerging entrepreneurs— “Gone are days of legacy systems, it’s time for cloud now. The ability to analyze customer needs and find a suitable tool or solution is the key to success.” As he rightly believes, “If you can imagine, you can develop it. It is time to dream big.”

Company
Visulon

Headquarters
Portland, OR

Management
Arun Joshi, CEO

Description
Providing technology platform to automate marketing and sales operations processes for apparel, footwear and accessories brands.