HAVI Ensures Continuous Supply of Promotional Premiums for QSR Chain

HAVI helped a quick-service restaurant (QSR) chain managing multiple promotions to implement automated freight optimization software to identify the most cost-effective solutions. The software and integrated logistics enabled the QSR to save more than 1,200 man-hours per year and meet demand for ongoing promotions.

HAVI Ensures Continuous Supply of Promotional Premiums for QSR Chain

Automated freight optimization tool and integrated logistics enable a quick service restaurant (QSR) chain to meet demand for ongoing promotions.


A major QSR chain imports millions of promotional premiums, from Asian manufacturers for U.S. , to give away with purchase during 15 or more promotional programs each year.

The restaurant chain has built a reputation for the assured supply of these premiums to its consumers and has never broken this promise.

The staggered promotions (two or three are typically in various stages of production and shipment at any one time) require thousands of freight shipments to be managed annually. Five container sizes are used over five chosen steamship carriers then coordinated through 22 manufacturers, 29 ports of origin, six ports of destination and delivered to 11 master warehouses throughout North America

For years, Excel-based spreadsheets were used to manage all of the logistical details and ensure adherence to promotional

. The spreadsheets were manually adjusted each day to reflect new information such as changing production schedules, carrier updates, weather impacts, customs delays, and revised arrival timelines.


The chain’s supply chain management partner HAVI, a global leader in packaging, supply chain services and analytics, merchandising planning and promotions management, and waste, recycling and sustainability solutions, successfully identified ways to reduce shipping costs, improve the visibility of logistics data, increase operational efficiencies, and assure timely delivery of these promotional premiums to the restaurants.

HAVI implemented load optimization software to organize the variables that could impact the shipment process. This made it possible to analyze the infinite combinations of promotional schedules, routes, lanes, containers, vessels and ports in order to identify the most cost-effective solutions across multiple promotions. This reduced the time spent on load planning by 10 to 15 hours per week and shifted focus towards the enhanced coordination and measurement of supply chain partners for execution.

Using the time efficiencies created by the optimization software, HAVI was able to leverage planning beyond the manual weekly process to create master shipping plans for each promotion to be layered across multiple weeks of execution. These master load plans serve as a centralized timeline for all supply chain partners to anticipate resources and track the premiums as they flow from foreign production into global transportation, regional warehousing, and domestic distribution where it reaches the consumer’s hands at local retail restaurants.

The combination of software optimization and master load planning provides greater visibility to promotional inventory planning and significantly improves the accuracy of internal program budgets. Externally, the master load plans are leveraged to align partners to the expected timelines and specifically forecast any resources or special equipment necessary to support the successful completion of the promotion under the optimized solution.

In addition, the integrated nature of this end-to-end planning makes the restaurant chain’s supply chain more agile when it comes to absorbing common disruptions like production delays, foreign holidays, severe weather conditions and even labor strikes. The added automation makes it possible to utilize real-time data to assess the current and future state of the supply chain, estimate potential impacts, and model alternative strategies. This shortens the time spent analyzing solutions, improves decision making, and allows for faster deployment of contingency plans to mitigate the risks, delays or costs associated with supply chain disruption.

As a result of its efforts, HAVI helped the restaurant chain create a more stable and cost-effective supply chain that is still agile enough to respond to changing conditions in the business.


Increased business intelligence – By creating an integrated system of software and process, and leveraging real-time data, HAVI helped the restaurant chain remove itself from the tactical day-to-day details of logistics management and focus on insights and trends. This information shapes strategic decisions that drive the supply chain.

  • Promoted greater collaboration – By providing greater visibility across the supply chain, HAVI increased alignment of external partners and resources to expected timelines and budgets.
  • Saved time and resources – By automating shipment optimization, HAVI helped the restaurant chain save more than 1,200 man-hours per year.
  • Reduced costs – HAVI helped the restaurant chain streamline its shipping logistics, which significantly reduced annual freight costs.
  • Protected the brand – HAVI enabled the restaurant chain to deliver on its promotional calendar, maintain its reputation for assured supply across thousands of retail locations, and deliver its promise to provide premium giveaways to its consumers.