Bangladesh has over 5,000 factories that manufacturer low-cost garments that you would see in big discount stores. About half of these are prime garment suppliers with the major retailers or distributors, but the other half are subcontractors and in numerous cases unsupervised. These subcontractors may be several layers down the (more...)
The supply chain applications market grew at a healthy 7.1% rate in 2012 as manufacturers drove greater visibility into variations on demand linked with the challenges of supply. With increased volatility in consumer patterns and market shifts, driven by fluctuating gas prices and commodities, leading organizations continue to (more...)
In a recent survey by the Institute of Supply Management (ISM), 30% of supply chain leaders say their companies are now embracing re-shoring. This compares to 37% who indicated they were not likely to consider bringing work back. A number of reasons are cited for this shift including (more...)
Over 1,100 workers were killed on April 24th in the 8 story collapse of Rana Plaza in Bangladesh. It made the news for a few days.
The editor of Supply & Demand Chain Executive, writes an op-ed in the June’13 issue (pg 6) on working conditions in the country. (more...)
The new 1,300’ long, 20 story high container ships of today carry up to 18,000 containers. They are the latest addition to an industry that transports 90% of the world trade in manufactured goods.
With these volumes, the new ships launched this year in Korea at (more...)
Last Friday was no ordinary day for Chip Starnes, the 42 year old factory owner of Specialty Medical Supplies in China. He recently announced movement of some of the production of their diabetes testing equipment from Beijing to Mumbai India. Of the 110 employees at the facility, about 80 (more...)
With rising labor costs, more factories are leaving for better locations in India and Vietnam. In Shenzhen, sewing machines that made garments for Lever Style now collect dust. Activity on the factory floor has dropped over the past 2 years by 33% or 5,000 workers as lower labor regions (more...)
Leading firms today are turning to ‘Additive Manufacturing’ to get their products to market faster. From consumer goods to medical implant devices, companies in numerous segments are leveraging lower cost 3D printers to rapidly prototype parts – even sending them around the world via internet to a local printer. (more...)
With the worldwide selloff in commodities, speculators are short selling metals causing great turmoil in the metals and mining sectors. The depressed demand for aluminum and other basic raw materials is taking its toll on both the top and bottom lines of the major suppliers as well as the revolving (more...)
To better control the cradle-to-grave ownership of its heavy duty construction equipment, Caterpillar recently bought partial ownership of CAT Auction Services. They are using the auction format to expand their sales of replacement parts and service, warranty insurance and customer financing which as reported in the Wall Street Journal can be more (more...)
Pella is a leader in designing, manufacturing and installing high quality windows and doors in new and re-modeled homes. Pella will be holding a reference event 24~25 April 2013 at their HQ in Pella Iowa for those interested in learning about Lean operations, excellence and continuous improvement leveraging their Oracle applications.
Discussions will take place around their customer experience, process improvements on the factory floor and their utilization of business analytics to drive better business decisions. The factory tours are impressive as the raw lumber and glass moves through the production process and exits a completed window or door!
Panama is investing $6Billion to add a wider 3rd lane to the Panama Canal and due to open in 2015. At a cost of $1Billion, the roadway of the Bayonne Bridge near New York is being elevated to a height of 215ft to allow larger container ships to pass under. Most modern harbors are being dredged to a depth of 50ft to accommodate the greater shipping tonnage of deeper container ships. These are just samples of the massive investment in infrastructure undertaken to bring the North American shipping traffic into the current century. With this new capability, ships (more...)
With the Dow approaching new highs and the resulting market optimism, there are several significant factors surfacing today that supply chain managers need to pay close attention to.
· * According to a recent Accenture study, "Emerging household incomes are expected to increase by $8.5TRILLION between 2010 and 2020". Adaptive supply chains will need to react accordingly to response to the potentially 3Billion people entering the middle class (Read Prestowicz “3 Billion Capitalists”).
· * There are 117 emerging market companies in the Fortune Global 500, a Six-fold increase since 2000 (Log.Mgmt, Feb’13, p.43). (more...)