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Upcoming Webinar: Supply Chain Segmentation- The Key to More Predictable and Profitable Business Outcomes

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This is a brief reminder that JDA Software and Supply Chain Matters will be hosting an upcoming webinar: Supply Chain Segmentation – The Key to More Predictable and Profitable Business Outcomes. In this webinar, this author will provide perspectives on the increasing importance of linking supply chain segmentation and more predictive planning and analytics capabilities to insure more predictable and profitable outcomes. I will further address how elements of supply chain advanced technology that can aide in linking such supply chain segmentation efforts. This complimentary webinar is scheduled for Wednesday, April 1st at 11am Eastern. Joining me in this webinar will be Puneet Saxena, Vice President, Manufacturing Planning at JDA Software. Readers can register for this webinar at this registration link. Join us as this coming week as we discuss today’s process and business requirement needs related to supply chain segmentation. Bob Ferrari, Founder and Executive Editor


Supply Chain Matters Tutorial- Pros and Cons of Zero-Based Budgeting

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In the light of this week’s announcement of the mega-merger among HJ Heinz and Kraft, coupled with the new interest in zero-based budgeting techniques, we felt it was timely to provide a brief tutorial on the process. A Google search can yield ample content and perspectives on this process. In definition, zero-based budgeting (ZBB) is essentially a financial-driven process where budgetary resources are set to zero every year and must be justified for the new budget period. It was a process originally conceived in the seventies in an era where organizational  bloat among large corporations was rather common. Instead of referencing the previous year’s budget, the slate starts over with managers having to justify their business assumptions and required expenditures for the upcoming period, as if they were a new business or support function. Every budget is viewed from a fresh perspective and evaluated and approved based on relevance to […]


More on the Heinz-Kraft Mega-Merger

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Since the announcement earlier this week, business and other media has generated a lot more background regarding the mega-merger of HJ Heinz and Kraft, and specifically the prime players behind this merger. Reports indicate that the talks began in January when 3G Capital approached Kraft.  This reports indicated that Kraft management was quite receptive to a potential merger or takeover, and the mutual talks moved swiftly leading to a Kraft board discussion in late February leading to the decision to sell the company.  As occurred when 3G acquired HJ Heinz, Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway was brought in for financial backing. The merger’s ramifications are already stark. The Wall Street Journal indicated that this merger promises to reshape the food industry and “could send rivals scrambling to shore themselves up with tie-up of their own.” In our Supply Chain Matters initial commentary, we pointed to additional tremors for consumer goods supply […]


Andrew Liveris Shares Winning Formula for Manufacturers

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Supply Chain Matters has in the past cited Andrew Liveris, Chairmen and CEO of Dow Chemical Company for his understanding and appreciation for the value and contribution of manufacturing and supply chain capability to business outcomes. Besides his current leadership of Dow, Mr. Liveris is an author and U.S. Presidential advisor on manufacturing competitiveness. In a September 2013 commentary, we highlighted his keynote delivered to the MIT Production in the Innovation Economy (PIE) Conference which unveiled results of MIT’s study on U.S. manufacturing competiveness. Thus we were pleased to be alerted to a commentary appearing in the online version of Chief Executive Magazine where  Mr. Liveris shares his winning formula for manufacturing success with other chief executives. His prime messages was for manufacturers to rethink the role in evolving global supply chains and actively address workforce training and development needs for today and the future. One of the more powerful statements […]


A Stark Advisory for Ocean Container Shipping Lines With Multi-Industry Implications

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Ocean container shipping and logistics are the lifeblood of global supply chain movements. For over two years, Supply Chain Matters has been advising our multi-industry supply chain readers about the effects of substantial overcapacity conditions occurring among major shipping lines, and their consequent impacts for service, cost and logistics.  Efforts directed at introducing ever larger mega-ships, multi-carrier capacity agreements, outsourcing of certain services and increased transit times and tariff rates continue to compound themselves. All of this places industry supply chains on the short end of any semblance of voice of the customer outcomes. The literal final straw has been the effects of the recent five month U.S. West Coast port disruption, which will take additional weeks or months to unravel. Now, strategic advisor Boston Consulting Group (BCG) has weighed in with a recent bcg perspectives report, Battling Overcapacity in Container Shipping. This report concludes: “The container-shipping industry has a […]


Breaking News: H.J. Heinz and Kraft Foods Mega-Merger Portend Additional Tremors Across CPG Supply Chains

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This morning, financial headlines reveal the rather stunning but not unexpected news that H.J. Heinz will merge with Kraft Foods Group in a combined public company that will be named Kraft Heinz Company. According to The Wall Street Journal, this deal will likely top $40 billion in valuation with the combined entity having revenues of approximately $28 billion. It would create what is expected to be the world’s fifth largest food and beverage company featuring many well-known consumer brands. From the lens of this blog, this development reinforces a clear message to other traditional consumer product goods supply chains that business-as-usual is no longer acceptable, and that further industry changes and developments are inevitable. This Heinz-Kraft deal is backed by infamous private equity firm 3G Capital Partners, and the financing of Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway, which are each contributing $5 billion in financing. The terms call for Heinz shareholders to […]


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