What’s Good for the Planet is Good for Business

How Diff Helped Boll & Branch Become a $100-million Business


Home Furnishing

Enterprise Tech

Shopify, Shopify POS, NetSuite, Quiet Logistics, NetSuite, Whiplash, Ryder


ERP, Fraud Management, Order Management,




Custom APIs

The Company

Disruption is not for the faint of heart - but when Scott and Missy Tannen learned about the unethical and polluting practices in the home textiles industry they saw an opportunity to “make better sheets by making a better company”.

As the first home textiles brand to earn a Fair Trade certification, Boll & Branch meets strict standards for labor practices and sustainability. This was achieved by reinventing the supply chain all the way from the cotton seed until the product reaches the customer’s home. In 2014, after 18 months of product development, Boll & Branch launched their first sheet sets on Shopify.

A daring investment with a big payoff. The eco-friendly and luxurious bedding was so popular that Boll & Branch reached $27m+ in annual revenue in their first three years.

The Challenge

This rapid growth presented unusual challenges. Staying true to the brand while meeting customer demand required unconventional thinking and innovative systems.

Traditional home textile brands overproduce to meet customer demand. This leaves excess, unsold merchandise sitting in a warehouse, eating away at profit margins until sold at a loss or disposed of. To temper these costs, brands negotiate lower rates with their suppliers resulting in poverty wages and unsafe conditions for factory workers and farmers.

But Boll & Branch is a different company. Sustainability, transparency and ethical practices are core values behind every strategic decision. Committing to Fair Trade means their product comes with higher production costs. To maintain profit margins Boll & Branch needed to build an ultra-efficient infrastructure and automate processes wherever possible.

David Reid joined as the COO and CFO at the end of 2016. His mission was to scale Boll & Branch for future growth; adding new product lines and sales channels. The company was evolving from a single Shopify store and warehouse to a complex ecosystem of headless eCommerce, branded storefronts and retail partners selling made-to-order and warehoused goods. 

NetSuite was chosen as the ERP system to streamline business flows and support day-to-day operations. But Boll & Branch needed more than an ERP - it needed a holistic solution of interconnected systems; a way to streamline business functions while ensuring actions trigger changes in related systems.

The Solution

Diff built a comprehensive ERP integration that orchestrates complex processes, interconnecting data from order sources to their supply network.

The integration makes strategic customer experience initiatives possible, including abilities to:

  • shop with up-to-date accurate inventory
  • purchase from a single checkout regardless of where and when merchandise is fulfilled or manufactured
  • upgrade shipping from options available with the lowest cost carrier in the state
  • track and manage orders online with real-time updates
  • purchase gift cards: physical with a handwritten message or digital

Internally, processes have been automated and a suite of tools created to manage the business, including:

  • a panel for Customer Service to manage orders and process refunds
  • potentially fraudulent orders flagged and presented in a panel for review
  • routing of orders to the appropriate fulfillment center or made-to-order factory
  • zip code mapping to send made-to-order mattress orders to the factory nearest the delivery address
  • virtual warehousing of inventory set aside for retail partners
  • options to override and retry automated processes

The Results

What’s good for the planet is good for business. Today, Boll & Branch is the largest D2C bedding brand in the world. The company now earns $116m+ annually on Shopify alone, a 430% increase from when it started with Diff in 2016.

Diff’s advanced ERP integration orchestrates the business without the need for manual intervention. There is no better example of this than at checkout: a single cart can have sheets from the Boston warehouse, rugs from another warehouse, and mattresses from a made-to-order factory requiring white-glove delivery and installation. Eight custom APIs ensure data is routed correctly while the customer, business and suppliers get real-time updates.

The peace of mind provided to Boll & Branch knowing their operations are running smoothly means the company can focus on strategic initiatives: growing the business while investing back into its product to improve the livelihood of farmers and factory workers that make their coveted bedding. 

Diff continues to grow and manage the ERP integration to suit the ever-evolving needs of this modern, disruptive company.

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