VTech Selects Cisco and Intel RFID Solution for Supply Chain Pilot
First Firm in Asia Pacific to Participate in EPCglobal Hong Kong’s EPCnetwork to Meet Wal-Mart RFID Requirements, Increase End-to-end Supply Chain Visibility and Improve Warehouse Management.
HONG KONG, April 28, 2006 - Cisco Systems® and Intel Corporation today announced that VTech (Telecommunications division), a leading supplier of corded and cordless telephones, has selected a radio frequency identification (RFID) solution from Cisco® and Intel for its pilot participation in the Hong Kong EPCnetwork initiative directed by EPCglobal Hong Kong. Upon completion, VTech will be able to comply with Wal-Mart’s RFID request requiring key suppliers and business partners to become RFID-compliant. This will also help VTech improve the efficiency of warehouse operations and management through automation, as well as serving to enhance visibility throughout the supply chain.
“We shipped over 40 million units of telecommunication products to various major retailers in North America in the financial year 2005, thus being RFID-ready and choosing a highly robust, reliable RFID solution is a must. The RFID solution from Cisco and Intel not only provides us with better product visibility, but also improves capabilities for inventory management, while bringing VTech much closer to its customers and partners in the supply chain. I am sure the Cisco solution as well as the industry-standard, widely deployed Intel architecture will continue to sharpen our edge in the global marketplace,” remarked Alex Kwan, Senior Supply Chain and Logistics Manager, VTech Telecommunications Ltd.
VTech’s pilot participation demonstrates that the Hong Kong EPCnetwork of EPCglobal Hong Kong has made significant strides since its launch last year. The Hong Kong EPCnetwork initiative aims to bring end-to-end supply chain visibility to the Pan Pearl River Delta (PPRD) region through the use of a common, standards-based data exchange allowing easy, secure, real-time communication between manufacturers, logistics companies and retailers. Manufacturers and logistics companies in the PPRD can expect to enhance their connections and relationships with retailers worldwide through the EPCnetwork initiative.
Commenting on this exciting move, Ms. Anna Lin, Chief Executive of GS1 Hong Kong and EPCglobal Hong Kong, said, “We are very pleased to see the world’s leading manufacturer VTech connecting to our Hong Kong EPCnetwork. VTech’s pilot case will set a reference model for how Hong Kong and Pearl River Delta-based companies share and exchange real-time supply chain data with their global customers. We are delighted to have Intel and Cisco’s continuous technological support to the Hong Kong EPCnetwork project that is aimed to provide supply chain information visibility. With the successful implementation of other of our pilot users, we believe it will help us deliver the value propositions of using EPC/RFID.”
The RFID solution, comprising Cisco AON for RFID and Cisco Services for RFID, is based on platforms powered by Intel technologies including Intel® Xeon®-based servers, RFID readers and PCs. The solution delivers integrated and intelligent RFID capabilities that connect the VTech and Wal-Mart RFID systems. The Hong Kong EPCnetwork project will enable VTech to take advantage of next generation RFID technology to track telecommunications products from the Dongguan factory to Wal-Mart distribution centers in the US. Using EPC-based RFID tags and readers and a standards-based data exchange - the EPC Information Service - VTech will have a technology infrastructure that will increase warehouse efficiency and global supply chain visibility. Until now, information between manufacturers in China and retailers around the world was communicated through electronic data interchange (EDI) or in worst-case situations via phone and fax.
“The PPRD is one of the world’s most important manufacturing hubs. To enhance their relationship with major retailers and expand their businesses, manufacturers in the region need to ride the RFID wave. VTech’s pilot participation in the Hong Kong EPCnetwork project testifies to the trend whereby the region’s manufacturing firms are rapidly transforming themselves by deploying technologies like RFID. Cisco is pleased to support EPCglobal Hong Kong’s EPCnetwork initiative to help manufacturers in the PPRD region increase their competitiveness and maintain their leading status in many different fields,” said Fredy Cheung, managing director of South China for Cisco Systems.
“Cisco is delighted to help top manufacturers such as VTech to embrace RFID. Our participation underpins our commitment to support enterprises in different sectors including manufacturing to better utilize the latest technologies,” said Mohsen Moazami, vice president of Retail-Consumer Products-Distribution at Cisco and a member of the Board of Governors for EPCglobal Inc. “RFID is gaining strong momentum because of the benefits it offers. These include end-to-end supply chain visibility, improved business flow and enhanced operating efficiency. Cisco’s RFID solution empowers customers such as VTech to join the growing RFID community easily and cost-effectively.”
“Intel recognizes the crucial role the PPRD plays in the development of the global Digital Supply Chain,” said Maria Kwok, director of customer solutions group, Intel Asia Pacific. “Intel silicon provides the standards-based backbone for exchanging data amongst widely distributed trading partners. By working with Cisco and GS1HK we are accelerating its adoption and maintaining Hong Kong’s position as one of the world’s busiest ports and an important logistics hub.”
“Intel and Cisco are working together to support EPCglobal Hong Kong’s EPCnetwork initiative that will facilitate suppliers, retailers and logistics players to benefit from real-time monitoring through the use of RFID, and to drive adoption of RFID by the various supply chain players through easy-to-implement bundled solutions. The pilot participation of VTech in the Hong Kong EPCnetwork initiative is consistent with Intel’s vision of the Digital Supply Chain,” said Jon Stine, Intel global industry manager, Retail-Consumer Packaged Goods.
Cisco and Intel will continue to support the various initiatives of EPCglobal, including those in Hong Kong. For instance, both companies contribute to the EPCglobal Industry Support Program (EISP) announced by EPCglobal Hong Kong today. The EISP aims to help manufacturers and product suppliers in Hong Kong to deploy RFID by offering them cost-effective solutions.
VTech is one of the world’s largest suppliers of corded and cordless telephones and a leading supplier of electronic learning products. It also provides highly sought-after contract manufacturing services. Founded in 1976, the Group’s mission is to be the most cost effective designer and manufacturer of innovative, high quality consumer electronics products and to distribute them to markets worldwide in the most efficient manner. For more information on VTech and its products, please visit www.vtech.com.
About EPCglobal Hong Kong
EPCglobal Hong Kong, formed under the auspices of GS1 Hong Kong, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to establish and support the EPCglobal NetworkTM as the global standard for real-time, automatic identification of information in the supply chain of any company, anywhere in the world. EPCglobal Hong Kong as the local Member Organization of EPCglobal Inc. is the only organization authorized to issue EPC Manager Numbers in Hong Kong. Supported by the Hong Kong SAR Government’s Innovation and Technology Commission (ITC) under the Guangdong-Hong Kong Technology Cooperation Funding Scheme, EPCglobal Hong Kong has launched an initiative to create end-to-end supply chain visibility for enterprises located in Hong Kong and the Pan Pearl River Delta by building an EPC network infrastructure based on the EPCglobal Network standard. For more information about EPCglobal Hong Kong, please visit: www.epcglobal.org.hk
About the Cisco and Intel Strategic Alliance
This collaboration is an expansion of an ongoing strategic alliance, under which Cisco and Intel collaborate on various technology and marketing initiatives. In addition to RFID, the collaboration includes bringing Business Class Wireless Suite and security solutions to enterprise customers. Cisco and Intel share a goal of developing and bringing to market technology solutions that will help businesses increase productivity and reduce the costs of managing their networks. As global business technology leaders, Cisco and Intel together are helping to transform businesses and industries worldwide, enabling the benefits of this new computing and networking model to be universally available today. For more information, please visit www.ciscointelalliance.com.
Intel, the world leader in silicon innovation, develops technologies, products and initiatives to continually advance how people work and live. Additional information about Intel is available at www.intel.com/pressroom.
About Cisco Systems
Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) is the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet. Information about Cisco can be found at www.cisco.com. For ongoing news, please go to newsroom.cisco.com. Asia Pacific news and information are available at www.cisco.com/asiapac/news. For more information on the Cisco RFID solutions, please visit www.cisco.com/go/rfid.
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