Meet our customer hero
Making a mark on the craft beer scene in Amsterdam
Foreach Brewing is an Amsterdam-based microbrewery selling its speciality beers in bars, restaurants, selected shops and directly to online customers. Established in June 2020, the company boasts a collection of popular beer recipes and offers customized brews for events and celebrations.
Born out a love for the craft of making beer, Foreach Brewing grew from a hobby to a start-up enterprise. The goal was to spread the gospel of artisanal brewing, from the taste to the drafting of the perfect small batch. When the start-up went live with its online shop in 2020, the launch taught the team lessons on brewing as a retail business. Despite investing in a range of apps for online sales, CRM and internal communications, they learned that better integration was needed to run the business. As a new company, the co-founders had to pitch in do many repetitive tasks manually, from counting inventory in the warehouse to compiling accounting reports. For the manual parts of their operations, the team had to routinely repeat simple tasks like checking to see if products had reached the right customers. This took precious time away from strategizing on how to grow and expand the business.
Kun Liu, co-founder of Foreach Brewing, notes that the team needed to be able to focus more energy on brewing beer and less energy on administrative tasks that could be automated. The Foreach team quickly realized that they needed a change, and fast, but as a small start-up they didn’t have enterprise-sized resources to invest in a full-scale integration platform.
“Foreach started as a bit of a hobby which grew unexpectedly to something a bit bigger than a hobby,” he says. “Brewing beer is where our passion lies, rather than keeping books and doing paperwork. We knew that we wanted a web shop and a CRM for our customers. We not only sell B2B to bars and restaurants, but we sell to consumers too, so we needed a system that gave us a good overview of who our customers are and exactly what they were buying.”
Liu also notes that the need for better visibility extended to a more effective way to track and manage merchandise inventory.
“We have 20,000 bottles of beer sitting around, and we realized very quickly that we needed to make sure we kept track of our inventory because we didn’t want to keep repetitively counting what we had in stock. We needed to bring all these different back-office applications together onto one single, easy-to-use platform.”
Thanks to a partnership with serviceshift, an Amsterdam-based IT consultancy, Foreach found the ideal solution: The Free Forever edition of webMethods.io, Software AG’s powerful cloud-based integration Platform-as-a-Service (iPaaS). Serviceshift’s founder and director Stefan Lenke found the technology to be a perfect fit.
“Foreach Brewing wanted a system, a CRM where they could see all their customer leads, and they wanted a web shop where they could keep track of what customers are buying. They also needed to keep track of their inventory. With webMethods, now they have it,” Lenke says.
The technology was not only incredibly easy to use, with an intuitive drag-and-drop interface to design, assemble, and deploy workflows for apps. It also came with industry-leading developer tools that supported multiple users, which made the team’s main goal of automating business processes extremely simple.
The most beneficial aspect of the solution was that Software AG’s Free Forever edition enables enterprises with fewer than 1,000 transactions per month to access it at no cost, with no time limits.
“It’s an incredible asset for a start-up to be able to access the power of webMethods for free for an indefinite amount of time,” adds Lenke.
Implementation was fast. Within a day, serviceshift had set up workflows to Shopify and HubSpot, and it quickly brought six more workflows live with only one day of implementation time each. As Foreach grows and develops, the platform will support extra applications and components.
Lenke explains: “With webMethods, Foreach is fully futureproofed. The company is secure in the knowledge that if they want to create an app, they can easily add APIs. Or if they want to automate connections with suppliers, they can add a B2B component. They have the confidence that the solution can support bigger dreams.”
Thanks to webMethods.io, the applications powering Foreach’s e-commerce platform are now seamlessly connected. When a customer places an order, the team receives an instant notification on Slack and can immediately fulfil it. The integration allows the team to see what kinds of products customers most demand and to set up custom order capabilities to facilitate orders containing mixes and matches of different inventory items. 80% of customers now order mixed types of beers, which was a big revelation for the team that is helping them to map out future product lines.
Inventory management is also automated, eliminating label counting. The platform has also simplified the entire financial reporting process. Now, instead of having to manually create reports, all sales are automatically extracted and forwarded to Foreach’s accountant, freeing up even more time to spend on creating the perfect brew.
“We have a warehouse outside of town, and every now and then we needed to bring some inventory into town and once it sold, check how much we had left. In the beginning we had to count everything multiple times to make sure it was right. Now the inventory is in Shopify, and we just need to update it there. Instead of weekly inventory reviews, we only do it twice a quarter, which saves a lot of time,” says Liu.
The extra time gained through having a fully integrated set of applications and automated back-office functions means the team can focus more on the things they are passionate about – creating and sharing great beer.
“The best thing about the solution is the time it saves,” says Liu. “That allows us to focus on what we do best - creating delicious brews and finding new customers that are as passionate about this craft as we are.”
webMethods.io has given Foreach the platform it needs to scale the business. No longer burdened with time-consuming paperwork and repetitive tasks, the founders can focus on growing the customer base and expanding their offering.
In partnering with Software AG and serviceshift, Foreach has made full use of the Free Forever edition but is secure in the knowledge that the solution will also scale with the business and flex to accommodate additional business requirements when needed. The business has been fully futureproofed.
“Once our volumes are where we envision them growing to, we’ll be more than happy to pay for it,” Liu adds. “For now, webMethods.io Free Forever has given us the exact kick-start we needed to scale our business.”