It's All about Retail
Nov. 19th-21st,Shanghai, China

French retailer Decathlon lays foundation for global expansion (BY DAN BERTHIAUME, excerpted from CHAIN STORE AGE)

The world’s largest sporting goods retailer is supporting growth with a seamless application network.

France-based Decathlon, which operates over 1,600 stores worldwide, including two U.S. locations in California, is leveraging the MuleSoft Anypoint application programming interface (API) platform to build a network of reusable APIs. By using APIs to connect enterprise systems and processes such as POS software, order management, and inventory data in an application network, the company can improve access to and reuse applications and data to scale globally.

Decathlon began by designing a cloud-based order management platform with reusable APIs including product prices, order reconciliation, inventory, and fulfillment. Using the Anypoint platform, Decathlon built and deployed a core set of 11 reusable APIs, moving away from legacy systems to make enterprise data more accessible. With its modernized order management foundation, Decathlon e-commerce orders are synced up with real-time inventory data to support a seamless checkout process.

For example, Decathlon USA’s Emeryville, California location integrated its cloud-based order management system with mobile POS and cashless payment systems to eliminate the need for consumers to go through a traditional checkout lane. Pulling data from the same order management system, Decathlon store associates can use their iPhones to share real-time aisle inventory information with shoppers and order non-stocked items for home delivery or in-store pickup.

The retailer has also rolled out autonomous inventory robots in its Bay Area US stores. Connecting to Decathlon’s back-end systems, each bot conducts precise, daily inventory counts and provides specific location information for products.

New projects continue to add more nodes to the application network. As a result, Decathlon hopes to build connected customer experiences, increase operational efficiencies, and create new products and services. With its new API-based architecture, Decathlon expects be able to add technologies, such as a new shipping solution, in one-third of the time.

“At Decathlon, our work starts and stops with delivering amazing experiences for our customers, and MuleSoft makes this easy,” said Tony Leon, CIO and CTO, Decathlon USA. “Anypoint Platform’s combination of API and integration capabilities lets us reimagine and deliver new in-store experiences almost instantly.”