History of the company

Forecasting is a challenge for many businesses and their stock systems, which leaves the organisation with a costly problem to address. This was the dilemma that Tony Dear recognised over 30 years ago and which led him to establish Inventory Management Associates (IMA) in 1984, designing and developing the first IMA software package on a DOS platform.

Ever since then, IMA has been helping companies to effectively ‘plug the gap’ with software that generates an ‘optimal fit’ forecast, whilst allowing the user to override the forecast with any available market knowledge. Over the years, the company has continued to grow and flourish as technology continues to advance at break-neck speed. During this time, we have had the pleasure of forming close working relationships with a diverse range of global companies, confirming that IMA Stock Smart is compatible with any type of business.

As a long-established software company, our aim is to provide demand forecasting and inventory management solutions that help our clients overcome their problems and meet their business requirements. We are totally committed to always providing the very best possible service and value to all our customers.

Meet the Team
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Steve is a software/database designer with over 25 years’ experience in the field. Before joining IMA, he developed various systems ranging from small, bespoke one-off packages for individual clients, to a full ‘in-house’ ERP system for an international lighting company.
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John Hargreaves is a software developer. Initially working in a refrigeration company, his responsibilities included software/hardware support and the development of internal 4GL software packages. He has worked with IMA for over twenty years, combining the roles of technical support and developer.
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Following a 20 year career in IT, John changed direction and spent the next part of his working life in Operations Management, specifically as European Logistics Director for a global, world-renowned corporation. Responsibilities included inventory management, demand forecasting, service level and freight management across the many different locations.
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As Tony Dear’s wife, Aureole has been instrumental in supporting her husband through the inception, development and continuing growth of IMA. She continues to actively participate in the management and strategic direction of the company.
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Frances is Tony Dear’s daughter. Before becoming involved in IMA, Frances studied medicine in London, qualifying in 2003 and a currently works as a general practitioner. Frances has an active and guiding role in the overall management and strategy of IMA.
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Adam is Tony Dear’s son-in-law (via Frances), having become part of the family in the early 1990’s. Adam’s career began as a teacher of English as a Foreign Language before developing into an ERP systems learning consultant and landing today as a business transformation project manager with a global professional services organisation. Adam takes the lead in IMA’s management, operations and strategic approach.