Randall Manufacturing
MHI Blog -- Full operations resumed at West Coast ports Saturday evening, after the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Maritime Association came to a tentative agreement on a new five-year labor contract.

The agreement came after nine months of negotiations that culminated in four days of meetings with two cabinet secretaries and ended a stalemate that that could have cost the U.S. economy $2 billion a day.
 
Modern Materials Handling -- ProMat, the materials handling industry’s premier trade show and educational conference, will be held at McCormick Place South from March 23- March 26, 2015, and officials are getting ready to welcome nearly 30,000 visitors.

Attendees will find more than 800 exhibits from industry, commerce and government showcased throughout the 325,000-square-foot show floor (an increase from the 300,000 square feet of exhibits at ProMat 2013). Also included are four keynotes and more than 100 educational sessions spread over four days. In addition, registered attendees not only gain full access to ProMat, but also free entry into Automate 2015, held across the hall in McCormick Place North.
 
Tech Flash -- A giant yellow robotic arm lifts pallets of products 24 feet into the air onto a massive conveyer belt system. The pallet zooms overhead, down the giant network of conveyer belts that crisscross Amazon's distribution center in DuPont, Wash.

The robotic arm, which Amazon employees have nicknamed Optimus Stow to Prime, weighs six tons and can lift pallets that weigh up to 3,000 pounds.
 
Supply & Demand Chain Executive -- Organizations are increasingly outsourcing various components of their supply chain and using it as a strategic advantage in the marketplace. This leads to significant efficiencies and drives continuous value.

While the outsourcing of manufacturing and distribution has been around for decades, it matured significantly. The relationships between clients and their outsourcing partners evolved into a strong interdependence, with each having a vested interest in the other’s success.
 
Material Handling & Logistics -- A lack of collaboration between companies and their suppliers is costing $30 billion a year.

In a market survey, only a third of large firms in the utilities, manufacturing, mining, construction, engineering and oil and gas sectors said they work collaboratively with other similar businesses to carry out due diligence on suppliers.
 
Tauber Institute for Global Operations at University of Michigan
Vidir Inc.
The New York Times -- There are many bodies in the delivery graveyard. Webvan, Kozmo and Urbanfetch were all seen as the next big thing before crashing spectacularly.

But same-day delivery is making a comeback, with large Internet players like Amazon and eBay entering the mix. And in that resurgence are small start-ups focused on a niche product: alcohol.
 
EBN -- An OEM's information network may be locked down tight, but a weak external link in the supply chain is not a threat to ignore. Among the many possible security holes in the supply chain, inside attacks are potentially lethal and often overlooked as well.

According to a comprehensive PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) analysis, the information flow from electronics buyers to their suppliers is surging, representing potentially valuable data to attackers inside the firewall who have the necessary passwords to access the information. The data they can comprise is low hanging fruit since most suppliers do not have a security plan in place to prevent and respond to insider security threats.
 
Supply Management -- Firms in China, Italy and the US are most vulnerable to climate risks, according to research.

Based on data collected from 3,396 companies across 11 countries, the report Supply Chain Sustainability Revealed: A Country Comparison said firms in these countries faced high exposure to climate risks but undertook "relatively little in the way of mitigation."
 
Los Angeles Times -- Entrepreneurs in the fledgling drone industry breathed a sigh of relief Monday after federal regulators finally issued proposed rules for flying the small robotic flying machines — a plan not as tough on commercial users as many had feared..

"It's exciting," said Adam Gibson, marketing director for Ctrl.me, a 3-year-old start-up in Venice Beach that sells and repairs drones. "It's a step forward."
 
Supply Chain Management Review -- As the world’s largest chemical company, BASF’s operations span 80 countries, six integrated production sites, and 390 other production facilities in Europe, Asia Pacific, Australia, Africa, and the Americas.

Domestically headquartered in Florham Park, N.J., the company faces some unique challenges when it comes to keeping its supply chain managers and employees around the globe well informed and up to speed with the latest knowledge and information.
 
Georgia Tech Supply Chain & Logistics Institute
Mashable -- An Amazon rep says as of Thursday, Prime Now has expanded into Brooklyn Heights, Downtown Brooklyn, Fort Greene, Clinton Hill, Park Slope and Prospect Heights in Brooklyn. Currently, two-hour shipping is available in those areas, but not one-hour shipping.
Amazon made its Prime Now one-hour delivery service available in all of Manhattan last week, a company representative said.

This is a a big expansion from its initial service launched in December, which was confined to one zip code in New York City.
 
MAPI -- When Africa makes the news, it is seldom for a positive reason. The average reader or viewer unfortunately associates this vast and highly diverse continent with the scourge of Ebola and Boko Haram. While these stories are modern instances of a long history of strife, the pessimistic media bias is unfortunately blocking what should be important stories regarding positive signals from the economic front.

The evidence of strengthening is increasingly persuasive. Between 2000 and 2010, the share of the African population living on less than $1.25 per day fell from 58% to 48%.1 In no small part, the falling rate of extreme poverty is driven by much-improved output performance.
 
SupplyChainBrain -- Analyst Insight: While e-commerce is buzzing, it's still only 6 percent of total U.S. retail spend. For CPG companies, the Online Search to Offline Purchase (O2O) market (30 percent to 40 percent of retail spend) growth is driven by mobile commerce.

Some 74 percent of smartphone owners use their device while shopping with 79 percent ultimately making a purchase as a result, according to Retailigence. As the "moment of truth" shifts to the "point of demand", more information is available to support supply chain decisions.
 
CFO -- As CFOs, we wear a lot of hats. We oversee the treasury, monitor our markets and position our companies for the future. Let me suggest another hat we should be wearing: that of the champion of supply chain resilience.

This role entails taking a hard look at the vulnerabilities many companies have lurking in their supply chains. Manufacturers retain supply chain partners all over the world to take advantage of affordable labor, key customer clusters, and access to raw materials. This globalization, however, has made the typical company’s supply chain more complex and distributed than ever, leading to potentially greater vulnerabilities.
 
EBN -- The Internet of Things (IoT) has quickly become part of the high-tech vernacular. IoT-enabled devices and machine-to-machine connectivity are rapidly creeping into our homes, cars, schools, and cities. It's getting harder to find an area of life not yet touched by the grand plans IoT visionaries want to bring to the world.

But, as is often the case, the crossover between end-market adaption, manufacturing floor alignment and supply chain sentience takes a little longer to shake out.
 
Engineering Innovation
 

 

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