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Automation, Control & Plant Intelligence News Updates   |   February, 2012
SFI Speeds Response Times and Business Growth with aPriori

More accurate and timely project quoting sets OEM parts supplier apart from its competition

Concord, MA, February 16, 2012, aPriori, a provider of product cost management software solutions, today announced that SFI, a leading OEM parts manufacturer, is leveraging its platform to accelerate response time and improve accuracy on project quotes. With aPriori, SFI is able to deliver more detailed product cost quotes back to its customers faster and its customers are able to make outsourcing decisions faster and with more confidence. SFI’s engineering teams also use the information available in aPriori; e.g., routings, tooling requirements, etc., to get a head start on project sourcing and production planning, further accelerating customers’ time to market.

SFI provides contract design, development, supply and value-added services for medium to heavy gauge components to a select group of original equipment manufacturers (OEM) in the agricultural, automotive, construction, industrial, transportation and defense industries. This includes welded parts for commercial automotive manufacturers and vehicle sub-frames for the U.S. military.

"We have a simple motto – ‘1st in, 1st to Win,"? says SFI president Bill Lerman. “Response time is key. Most customers are looking for a quote that's within budget from a supplier they can trust and can count on vs. the lowest possible quote. It's not always about the best price. It’s about the best price/value/reliability. aPriori enables us to do that faster and more accurately than our competition.”

"With aPriori, we get ahead of the whole process," says Hashim Alsaffar, new product launch engineer at SFI. “We can respond more quickly to customer requests for quotes, respond to more requests overall, and equally important, see immediately whether or not a job is really in our sweet spot. aPriori makes our team and our customers more knowledgeable about the requirements of a project. This makes us a better, value-added supplier and has a positive effect on the customer’s overall time to market.”

With aPriori, SFI can quickly analyze any part or product from a CAD model and break it down to the lowest possible level of cost detail. aPriori works with 3D CAD models generated by any major CAD modeling system on the market today, including: Pro/ENGINEER, CATIA v5, Siemens NX, Solidworks, SolidEdge and Inventor to name a few. No matter what type of CAD model the customer sends, aPriori can quickly open that model and generate a cost estimate in seconds. Large, complex quote requests that might have taken SFI weeks to respond to can now be done in one to two days. Smaller quote requests can be done in minutes instead of hours or days. SFI also uses the system for prototyping and rough quotes.

"For any contract manufacturer, accurate and timely project quoting is a critical success factor. It can make the difference between winning and losing business and making and losing money,” said Stephanie Feraday, president and CEO at aPriori. “With aPriori, SFI can not only respond quickly and accurately to new business opportunities, but also determine whether a project is a good fit for its manufacturing capabilities. It drives efficiencies across the business.”

For more details on SFI's deployment of aPriori, download the case study here.

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About SFI
Since its founding in 1956, SFI has grown to become the leading OEM parts manufacturer in the nation. Today it employs over 600 skilled professionals and operates three locations in Memphis, Tennessee; Conway, Arkansas and New Boston, Ohio. Together these facilities provide over one million square feet of state-of-the-art production space fully dedicated to steel fabrication solutions. This enables SFI to offer a full spectrum of process operations, including press brake, roll forming, coil processing, laser cutting, stamping, welding, machining, powder coat painting and assembly. Whether an OEM needs press braking capability up to 28 feet, stamping presses up to 2000 tons or a 5 axis machining center to handle a 40 ton part, SFI has all the capabilities to handle it quickly and efficiently.

About aPriori
aPriori software and services generate hard-dollar product cost savings for discrete manufacturing and product innovation companies. Using aPriori’s real-time product cost assessments, employees in engineering, sourcing and manufacturing make more-informed decisions that drive costs out of products pre- and post-production. With aPriori, manufacturers launch products at cost targets, maximize savings in re-work projects and never overpay for sourced parts.
To learn more about aPriori and its product cost management solutions and services, visit or call 1.978.371.2006. To see an overview demonstration of aPriori, click here.
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