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Peak Holiday Season Surge- The Final Crunch Begins


It is Friday, December 19 and the peak holiday surge of in-store and online customer fulfillment is just a two business days and hours away and the final crunch is underway.  Thus far, our community already has some acquired learning from the 2014 holiday surge, learning, that stings goods producers, shippers as well as retailers and e-tailers. Business and industry media have each reported how the U.S. West Coast port crisis impacted various brand-name retailers and exporters and their efforts to get inventory where it was needed. Goods arrived late or not at all, forcing retailers to shuffle planned merchandising and promotional plans.  Yesterday, The Wall Street Journal reported on frustrations expressed by Ann Inc. owner of Ann Taylor, Chico’s, Lululemon Athletica, Perry Ellis International, Tommy Bahama and others not only for positioning holiday inventory but upcoming January inventories as well.  Western U.S. exporters missed their holiday shipment windows because […]

Supply Chain Matters 2015 Predictions for Industry and Global Supply Chains- Part One


Once a year, just before the start of the New Year, the Ferrari Consulting and Research Group and the Supply Chain Matters Blog provide our annual ten predictions concerning industry and global supply chains for the coming year. We have maintained this tradition since the founding of this blog in 2008 and it continues to be quite popular with our readers and clients. These predictions are provided in the spirit of advising supply chain organizations in setting management agenda for the year ahead, as well as helping our readers and clients to prepare their supply chain management teams in establishing programs, initiatives and educational agendas for the upcoming year. Predictions are sourced from synthesizing developments and trends that are occurring in supply chain business, process and technology dimensions, researching various economic, industry and other forecasting data, along with input from clients, thought leaders and global supply chain observers. We take […]

A Supply Chain Matters Rant Regarding Headline Hype- Offshoring vs. Reshoring


Throughout 2014, Supply Chain Matters has been tracking and highlighting the significantly increased momentum of U.S. and North America based manufacturing.  Increased U.S. manufacturing momentum was included in our predictions for 2014 along with some specific caveats. Throughout the year we have pointed out the obvious needs across certain industry supply chains for rebuilding world class supply and services ecosystems. We continue to believe that the signs are obvious. Because of the growth potential within emerging up and coming markets across the globe, many manufacturers prioritized manufacturing and supply chain capital investments specifically within these growth regions. In September we highlighted business media reports citing a Morgan Stanley report indicating that the average age of industrial equipment in the U.S. has risen above 10 years. Growth of all types of capital spending by U.S. firms increased 3 percent in 2013, and is forecasted to be 3.8 percent this year, levels far […]

How a Single Expensive Component Can Inhibit End-of-Year and Customer Fulfillment Goals


Over the remaining few days of December various supply chain teams will be hard at work supporting end-of-year shipment and revenue milestones. Most supply chain teams are aware that completing key milestones, whether financial, business or management focused, are critically important for compensation and career considerations. In many cases, singular parts or component assemblies can likely be a cause for multiple end-item shipment delays. We are fairly confident that many of our readers residing in manufacturing, retail or service supply chains can well relate to this situation. Thus, we were not at all surprised to have run across a Bloomberg published article indicating that Boeing and Airbus production and supply chain teams are working to ensure that 2014 end-of-year and program production and shipment milestone targets are fulfilled.  The December challenge stems from France based Zodiac Aerospace, a supplier of upscale lie-flat airline seats.  Certain deliveries for both the new […]

Supply Chain Planning Provider Kinaxis Completes Closing of Secondary Offering


In June of this year, supply chain planning technology provider Kinaxis announced a public offering of its stock.  This IPO garnered little visibility in the U.S. because news of the IPO offering was restricted to Canada and the Canadian equity community.  Supply Chain Matters readers were made aware of both the pending IPO and in a Friday news round-up, completion of the initial offering. According to a Kinaxis press release published in June, the IPO consisted of 5 million common shares with an aggregate of 2.7 common shares being sold by certain selling shareholders at a price of Cdn$13.00 per share. The initial public offering and secondary offering was priced at Cdn $15 per common share and resulted in aggregate gross proceeds of Cdn$65.0 million to Kinaxis and Cdn$35.6 million to the selling shareholders, for total aggregate gross proceeds of Cdn$100.6 million. At the time, Canadian business media reports identified the […]

BMW Announces New CEO with Engineering, Manufacturing and Operations Background


Supply Chain Matters has previously called attention to executives with supply chain focused leadership experience ascending to higher levels of senior management.  Our last commentary of this nature focused on the ascendancy of Mary Barra as CEO of General Motors. Now, BMW joins such ranks with the announcement that Harald Kruger will take over as CEO in May 2015. BMW’s current CEO Dr. Norbert Reithofer will step down from the CEO slot a year earlier than planned, because of upcoming changes in German law related to the composition of Supervisory Boards. According to a BMW Blog posting, Kruger stood out as the most likely board member to step-  up and take the reigns for the next era of leadership at BMW. In its announcement, BMW indicates that Reithofer would move to head the supervisory board of the auto maker, while production executive Harald Krüger would become the BMW’s new chairman. […]

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