What have car production and brewing lager got in common with baggage handling and fighting crime? The answer: as processes, they’ve all benefitted from Redditch based Lanner Group’s simulation technology. With a client list that boasts brand names such as Virgin Atlantic, Volvo, Airbus and Shell and offices in Europe and the US, Lanner Group has truly become a global success story for the region.
Lanner Group’s origins lie in the West Midlands car industry. The company evolved from the original IT department of British Leyland Systems following an acquisition, merger and management buy-out. The 50-strong company, founded in 1996, is recognised as the world leader in business process simulation and optimisation.
Most commonly associated with flying, simulation technology is now used in a broad range of industries including manufacturing, defence, air transport, finance, healthcare and energy. It’s also widely used across the public sector by police forces and NHS Trusts.
Simulation is a decision making tool providing the ability to model, analyse and optimise processes in a completely risk-free environment. As David Jones, Managing Director, Lanner Group explains, “You wouldn’t fly an aeroplane without simulating it first so why invest in new, or change manufacturing plant processes, without knowing in advance whether such change can succeed. It’s better to make your mistakes ‘on the ground’.” The benefits of simulation are numerous including improved productivity, efficiency and cost reduction. In this tough economy it also means competitive edge.
Currently Lanner has four principal products. WITNESS the flagship tool, simulates the implications of different business decisions and business processes, no matter how complex they may be. L-SIM, a technology-light version, is designed for the simulation of business processes. PRISM, the virtual police force, revolutionises the way Police Forces across the UK make decisions and Px-SIM - for pharmaceutical production process efficiency.
Lanner has forged strong partnerships with global IT suppliers including IBM who have incorporated Lanner’s software into their process solutions. The company also sells its products through a network of resellers.
David Jones believes the company’s success stems from being a customer driven organisation: “We endeavour to understand our customer’s requirements regardless of industry or geographic location.” The technology was recognised in the 2007 prestigious ICT Cluster awards, winning most innovative software product.
Solihull born and raised David Jones recruits locally for the core UK based functions including sales, marketing and development. As a Redditch HQ international software company, the need to recruit and retain high calibre staff is fundamental to the business’ success so Lanner also offers its staff the opportunity of travel and relocation to other countries where it has offices and partners including the US, France, Germany and more recently China.
The company was fortunate to have received financial support from the regional development agency; Advantage West Midlands in the form of Research and Development funding which David Jones believes was invaluable in speeding up the development phase of their product. Lanner is an active participant of regional networking events and has formed a strong partnership with Warwick Business School.
In the future the company is focusing on the Far East, such as China where much of the world’s traditional manufacturing is now taking place.
Lanner Group Limited