subscribe: Posts | Comments | Email

Supply Chain Matters Highlights of the MIT 2014 Crossroads Conference

1 comment

Supply Chain Matters had the opportunity to recently attend the 2014 Crossroads Conference hosted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Center for Transportation and Logistics (CTL). Crossroads is an event that began 10 years ago, and each year we look forward to attending and hearing about leading-edge trends and developments in MIT supply chain focused research and across industry supply chains. Each year, the agenda shifts in focus and the 2014 conference featured talks on advanced and emerging research occurring among select MIT faculty members.  The conference was kicked-off with a presentation from MIT Professor Suzanne Berger, principal author of the book, Making in America, From Innovation to Market. Professor Berger summarized the multi-year research conducted by the MIT Task Force on Production and Innovation. Supply Chain Matters has previously posted our summary of last year’s event that reported on the findings from the MIT PIE Task Force. None […]


Supply Chain Matters Attendance at 2014 Oracle Industry Connect Conference

0 comments

Supply Chain Matters was invited to attend Oracle’s Industry Connect Conference held in Boston at the latter part of March. The conference drew a large compliment of attendees, featured three industry tracts, along with a focus on program management.  We enjoy attending industry focused events because they provide a keener sense of industry-specific challenges, viewpoints and perspectives.  We encourage technology and services providers to host more such events. Due to a commitment to attend another event, we devoted the majority of our limited time focused on the Retail industry tract of speakers, but did manage to catch a cross-industry panel discussion featuring the theme of the Customer Experience. One clear theme brought out by this panel was that nearly every industry sector is adjusting to more demanding and more personalized experience factors concerning customers. Healthcare consumers now have many more choices for an healthcare provider and with a new emphasis […]


Supply Chain Matters Guest Contribution: Web 3.0 Enables the Smart Supply Chain Network

0 comments

A Supply Chain Matters Guest Contribution by Rich Sherman In my previous Supply Chain Matters guest contribution, I outlined the concept of Web 3.0 enabling a fundamental transformation in supply chain management from linear, sequential thinking and communication to a demand/supply network, systems thinking, and dynamic communication. As we evolve in the Connected Age, the transformation is emerging as the Smart Supply Network 3.0 (SSN 3.0). It’s an extension of the vision I painted of a Smart Supply Network in my book. Two years later that vision is becoming reality as Web 3.0 is becoming a reality. Smart Supply Network 3.0 Supply chain problems are caused from the uncertainty, time delays and amplification of variability based on linear communication of demand changes from one function to another and from one organization to another. The parts of the chain don’t work together. They often work against one another. They may be […]


Reports of Suitors for IBM’s Semiconductor Operations

0 comments

The Wall Street Journal is citing familiar sources (paid subscription)  as indicating that Globalfoundaries Inc. has emerged as the leading candidate to potentially acquire IBM’s semiconductor production operations unit. The WSJ reports that other interested candidates were Intel and TSMC, but the latter has apparently dropped out of ongoing talks because its primary interest was in IBM’s semiconductor R&D capabilities. The publication further reports that a deal is not imminent because it involves thorny issues including total asking price as well as intellectual property (IP) protection and long-term supply agreements with IBM for future semiconductor needs. For the supply chain and B2B community, this move, if consummated, obviously represents a significant  strategic  shift for IBM. After the now pending sale of its low-end x86 server based operations to Lenovo, a sale of the semiconductor operations would position IBM in essentially a totally outsourced supply chain footprint while retaining  product design. […]


Boeing Announces Q1 Delivery Performance for Commercial Aircraft: The Good and Not So Good News

0 comments

Boeing has announced the results of new commercial aircraft delivered in the first quarter, declaring the deliveries rose 18 percent from year earlier results. That headline seems to be somewhat of a misnomer. First quarter 2014 deliveries included 161 commercial aircraft compared with 137 in Q1 of 2013.  The misnomer is that all operational and in production 787 aircraft were in a grounded condition a year ago pending FAA investigation of suspected lithium ion battery fires, thus a comparison to last year’s Q1 has little meaning. Boeing re-started 787 deliveries in early May of last year.  Boeing delivered 18 new 787’s in Q1, a shortfall of the company’s planned 10 aircraft per month goal. That compares to 25 new 787’s delivered in Q4 and a continued sign of production and other supply-chain problems associated with the Dreamliner. On the positive side, Boeing delivered an incredible 115 new Next Generation 737 […]


Zara Continues to Invest in Faster Logistics

1 comment

Inditex, the parent company of fashion retailer Zara continues to invest in that retailer’s fast fashion capabilities. The Wall Street Journal recently reported (paid subscription) on a $209 million investment in a new logistics hub, the tenth distribution center within Spain, which will be capable of distributing approximately 500,000 garments per day to over 6000 retail stores located within 87 countries. A further investment of $680 million has been directed for a logistics upgrade for various distribution centers including the Cabanillas, Spain hub. Inditex continues to invest heavily in Zara’s competitive differentiator, namely the ability to quickly be able to turn any new fashion trend into finished garments in a matter of a few weeks.  These latest investments on agile distribution hubs provide an added boost to back-end execution and store stocking needs. Zara is further in the process of changing its retail strategy, investing in larger retail footprints while […]


« Previous Entries Next Entries »