Drone On: How we enabled Parrot products to return to the skies
Parrot, a leading drone OEM at the forefront of the “drone revolution”, had been growing at a rapid pace and at the point did not have a solution to handle their returns. Many of these returns were simply cosmetic and began piling up at their 3PL to the point where it was taking up a very large footprint, costing the company a great deal in handling and managing costs.
Though Parrot had long considered various options on how to test, refurbish and repair their customer returns, they did not have the resources and experience to do this in-house. A further challenge was the lack of a clear market in which to resell the refurbished products.
Prior to connecting with us, they had contracted an outside service provider to test several thousand units, but this turned out to be costly at every stage. The testing quality was lacking, and there was no clear market re-entry strategy, which resulted in subpar products entering the market, eroding the price and brand perception significantly.
With such heavy losses being incurred, Parrot was ready to implement a “recycle all returns” policy, without attempting to recoup any value.
Parrot contacted us, and that same day our team hopped on a plane and met with them to truly understand their operations and challenges. In less than 4 weeks, we implemented a process that allowed us to completely manage the logistics of their return process from end to end.
Rather than being sent to a 3PL, returns were routed directly from retail to our facility. We collaborated with the manufacturer to put together a detailed test process for the full product line, product re-flash and data wipe, and designed customer refurbished packaging with the manufacturers’ approval.
A revenue share program was set up with the manufacturer, which provided Parrot with full visibility on how the products where sold, through which channels, and the product price point.
A returns process which, prior to choosing Windsor, had operated at a tremendous cost, was now producing close to $10M in revenue per year. Windsor has been a critical resource to the manufacturer and regularly communicate with the quality team on issues discovered during testing, as well as feedback that we get from downstream customers.
To date, we’ve expanded the program to cover returns from other international hubs around the world.