Candle Corporation of America Launches Sales Force Automation Initiative

Blyth, Inc. Subsidiary Improves Go-To-Market Strategy and Sales Representative Productivity with New Technology

Greenwich, Connecticut, UNITED STATES


GREENWICH, Conn., Nov. 5, 2001 (PRIMEZONE) -- Blyth, Inc. (NYSE:BTH) today announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Candle Corporation of America, launched the first phase of a sales-force automation project with an Internet-based software application. The introduction took place at the summer gift shows with the Company's regional sales directors and national managers. Candle Corporation of America offers the Colonial Candle of Cape Cod(r) and Colonial at HOME(r) brands of premium fragranced candles and related accessories to independent specialty stores and department stores nationwide.

The new software allows sales representatives to expedite the order-writing process, improving efficiency and decreasing the waiting time customers typically face at the semi-annual gift shows when placing their orders. Order accuracy and productivity are also improved as the system is capable of scanning product bar codes, processing multiple delivery destinations and dates, and including applicable incentive purchase programs. The web-based application automatically delivers the completed order to the Company's internal fulfillment systems.

Commenting on the new technology, Robert B. Goergen, Blyth's Chairman of the Board and CEO, said, "Automated-order entry system software is an important new tool for Candle Corporation's sales force. This technology decreases the time spent on paperwork substantially, allowing sales representatives to focus on the customers' needs and the products we offer to satisfy them. Our most productive sales representatives were hindered in the past by the extra time needed to process manual orders, which could consume two full days each week. This system will allow them to set their expectations even higher and improves their prospects of reaching new goals."

Mr. Goergen continued, "We are committed to continued investment in technology. E-Business initiatives are an important focus of Blyth's Global Services Group and one of our core competencies. The initial success of our current project increases the likelihood that we will expand this type of software solution to other parts of our business."

In addition to improved customer service in the showroom, immediate reordering capability is now available to sales representatives as they call on customers in the field. The order is sent via the Internet for immediate processing, reducing customers' waiting time for additional products. Candle Corporation's new technology is also used to improve sales forecasting and manufacturing requirements. The system's real-time reporting features provide for sales analysis by product, customer, representative and regional showroom.

Following the successful launch this summer, Candle Corporation's new technology is being made available to its 120 independent sales representatives. The software is supplied by Showroom Solutions, Inc., based in Denver, Colorado.

Blyth, Inc., headquartered in Greenwich, Conn., designs, manufactures and markets an extensive line of candles and home fragrance products including scented candles, potpourri and other fragranced products, and markets a broad range of related candle accessories. Its products are sold direct to the consumer under the PartyLite(r) brand, to retailers in the mid-tier and premium retail channels, under the Colonial Candle of Cape Cod(r), Kate's Original Recipe(tm) and Carolina Designs(r) brands and in the mass retail channel under the Ambria(tm), Florasense(r) and FilterMate(r) brands. In Europe, its products are also sold under the Gies, Colony and Wax Lyrical brands. Blyth also markets a broad range of Creative Expressions and Foodservice products, including seasonal and home decor products under the Midwest of Cannon Falls(r) brand, decorative seasonal products under the Impact(tm) brand, paper-related products under the Jeanmarie(r) brand and tabletop illumination products and portable heating fuel for the hotel, restaurant and catering trade, under the Ambria(tm), Sterno(r) and HandyFuel(r) brand names. Net Sales for the twelve months ended July 31, 2001 totaled $1,168 million.

Blyth, Inc. may be found on the Internet at www.blythinc.com.

This press release contains "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include statements concerning plans, objectives, goals, strategies, future events or performance and underlying assumptions and other statements that are other than statements of historical facts. Actual results could differ materially due to various factors, including the risk of a continuing weakness of the retail environment, the effects of our restructuring, the risk of maintaining the Company's growth rate, the Company's ability to respond to increased product demand, the risks (including foreign currency fluctuations) associated with international sales and foreign products, the risks of being able to recruit new independent sales consultants, dependence on key management personnel, competition in terms of price and new product introductions, and other factors described in this press release, in the Company's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended July 31, 2001 and in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended January 31, 2001.



        

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