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February 25th, 2021 (Updated 09/16/2021) | 5 min. read

How PLZ Achieved Total Pricing Visibility in Under Six Weeks

PLZ Aeroscience is the North American leader in specialty aerosol and liquid product manufacturing. With 18 locations spanning 2.7 million square feet, the Corporation formulates, blends, fills, and packages some 2,500 products.

Formed in 2005, but with roots dating back as far as 1939, PLZ has 1,800 employees across all of its locations, generating $930 million in sales. The Corporation is continually evolving and adapting its products to meet the changing needs of the market and is currently committed to providing products designed to stop the spread of COVID-19.

PLZ Needed Total Visibility to Take Control of Pricing in Troubled Times

PLZ wanted the ability to make rapid strategic decisions with the broadest range of information possible. Their existing pricing solution was missing the functionality needed to present pricing data in a more rapid and actionable manner.

Management was, therefore, searching for a new set of pricing tools that would: boost agility, support and extend sales confidence, identify risks and opportunities early, and provide quick and accurate answers to buyers’ queries. Furthermore, they wanted the facility to efficiently test and optimize pricing strategies, maximizing margin while continuing to create exceptional value for customers.

Price variability was another focus for PLZ, and price optimization, management, and realization software promised to provide a stabilizing effect. By streamlining price calculations through automation, the need for manual price overrides could be reduced.

PLZ wanted advanced pricing analytics that they could use to drill down into revenue, margin and profitability, uncovering the “full story” behind results and trends. In short, they needed total visibility over pricing.

The global uncertainty and financial restraints caused by COVID-19 meant PLZ needed a flexible, cost-effective solution that could be implemented super-fast but without compromising on visibility and intelligent analytics. They chose Lightning, Pricefx’s standardized enterprise pricing solution, preconfigured for rapid deployment, to achieve this.

PLZ Chooses Lightning to Leverage the Power of Intelligent Pricing Right

With Lightning, PLZ could skip the proof-of-concept stage and dive straight into a wide array of ready-to-go, out-of-the-box pricing tools. Key users could experience Pricefx in a matter of weeks, promoting adoption before committing to a larger project down the line.

Rather than begin data gathering from scratch, PLZ’s pricing team could upload all of their existing product, customer and transaction data into Pricefx and start leveraging the benefits right away. The Sales Insights Accelerator, which comes pre-loaded with nine dashboards (or pre-defined analyses), immediately proved particularly useful. PLZ’s leadership can now see actual gross-to-net profitability for each customer, which they hadn’t been able to do before. Price waterfall, profitability over time, and revenue and margin breakdowns helped identify trends and new growth opportunities.

With the PriceAnalyzer tool, PLZ could start to build and customize charts of their own. This means salespeople on the frontline can rapidly be provided with accurate, easy-to-understand data, boosting and supporting their efforts. Safe in the knowledge that their information is based on data that is error-free and up to date, they’re better equipped than ever to defend prices when experiencing pushback during negotiations. And with everything stored in one centralized hub, they no longer have to reach out to the pricing team directly for pricing information or wait for a response.

With Everything in One Place, Sales Can Make Informed Decisions in Real-Time

A tremendous amount of pricing progress has been achieved in a short space of seven weeks.

“Even in the midst of a pandemic and work-from-home orders, the Price FX Lightning approach delivered functionality that was up and running in less than six weeks. The Waterfall dashboard gives us full visibility into gross-to-net profitability, which is HUGE for our company because we’ve never had it before. Now our business units have information at hand to identify profit leakage and make better business decisions. The Revenue and Margin causality dashboards help us quickly explain the reasons behind changes in period-over-period performance. Previously, our pricing and finance teams spent up to two weeks building the analysis to create Revenue and Margin bridges for executive presentations and summarize causality, so the PriceAnalyzer dashboards provide tremendous time savings for us. During the project, we appreciated the collaborative workstyle of the Pricefx team and their openness and ability to make modifications that better meet the specific needs of our business.” says Laurie Flowers, Director of Pricing PLZ Aeroscience.

By taking a collaborative and flexible approach, Pricefx has continually modified PLZ’s Lightning deployment to ensure it meshes perfectly with their evolving business needs and generates the best ROI.m Total pricing visibility has been achieved. Each business unit has the right pricing data on-hand at all times, enabling them to instantly identify areas of profit leakage or margin potential, and make agile, bold decisions to optimize accordingly. At a glance, Lightning’s Revenue and Margin Causality Dashboards can pinpoint the causes of any unexplained dips in period-over-period performance.