Unprecedented demand shifts due to the COVID-19 pandemic have created a highly unpredictable environment. Recognizing both the risks and opportunities, a leading CPG company sought validation of its internal demand forecasting models in four major categories essential to its business. The client wanted greater confidence to decisively move forward with key production decisions to keep store shelves filled in the short-term, as well as to unlock the potential for increased future growth. Most importantly, it needed to know what demand looked like for the rest of 2020, and what a potential second COVID-19 wave and resulting lockdowns would mean for high-demand products like hand sanitizers, liquid soap and bar soap.
The IRI team created rapid-response forecasts in four mega-categories that represented eight of the company’s product lines. Customized models were built taking into consideration key factors related to how the global pandemic changed usage and consumption patterns (taken from consumer surveys and secondary research), the impact of stockpiling behavior, inventory drawdown at home and shifting out-of-home behavior to at-home. These forecasts were based on three different shopping environment scenarios: pre-pandemic normal (baseline), COVID-19 contained and a resurgence or second wave.
IRI’s proprietary consumer data and demand forecasting methodologies largely validated this leading global company's internal forecasts based on millions of consumers being impacted by regional stay-at-home orders, stockpiling and evolving shopping behaviors during the pandemic. With more confidence to set a winning course in navigating through this crisis, this CPG leader will be able to meet consumer demand and gain market share even as competitors struggle to keep the shelves stocked.
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