Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 03/30/2016 | 1:27 PM


More venture capital money thrown at a shipper-carrier connectivity app. XPO gets involved in a Paris road-rail project. And Daimler works on a driverless truck convoy model.


Daimler Trucks plans autonomous vehicles platoons

Daimler Trucks plans to improve truck connectivity beyond today’s capabilities, creating networked trucks that can use sensors and cameras to drive in a convoy for greater safety and lower fuel consumption, the automaker announced at a Dusseldorf, Germany, press conference.

Source: Daimler

VCs throw $16 million at startup firm with app that connects shippers and truckers

Seattle trucking-software startup Convoy just landed another $16 million in venture capital from big-name investors such as executives from Amazon.com, Instagram, Acosta, and LinkedIn. The Silicon Valley titans are excited about the firm’s software that connects truck drivers with freight that needs hauling, allowing freight companies and trucking companies to connect through a simple smartphone app.

Source: The Seattle Times

Shyp now has a one-tap way to ship stuff you sold on eBay

Selling stuff on eBay may have just become a lot easier, at least in a few U.S. cities. As of mid-March, some sellers no longer have to pack and send merchandise themselves thanks to eBay’s new deal with Shyp. The San Francisco-based startup works by picking up whatever you want to send, packing it up, and shipping it—just tap a button in the app. With the new integration, eBay sellers can connect their accounts to the Shyp app and see a feed of their recently sold items. Once an eBay seller is ready to ship the items, Shyp promises to show up within 20 minutes.

Source: Wired.com  

American Apparel, Postmates Use RFID Visibility for On-Demand Delivery

Consumers who use Postmates' on-demand delivery service now have the opportunity to buy core products from American Apparel. The service takes advantage of the passive ultrahigh-frequency (UHF) RFID tags that American Apparel attaches to all of its merchandise, enabling Postmates to identify which items are available within an individual customer's geographic area.

Source: RFIDJournal.com

PHMSA finalizes guidelines for reverse logistics transport of unsellable shipments containing HazMat

The Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) has adopted its proposed regulations governing the movement of returns of unsellable products containing hazardous materials from a retail facility to a distribution or reclamation. The agency affirmed that all goods must move via motor carrier; rail and air shipments are prohibited. It also adopted a definition of reverse logistics for unsellable products containing hazardous materials as “the process of offering for transport or transporting by motor vehicle goods from a retail store for return to its manufacturer, supplier, or distribution facility for the purpose of capturing value (e.g., to receive manufacturer’s credit), recall, replacement, recycling, or similar reason.”

Source: Lexology

XPO in Parisian road-rail project

Transport and logistics company XPO Logistics, Inc. is taking part in a joint road-rail project to shuttle freight to and from Paris and its suburbs. Under the multi-modal project, being conducted with Eurorail and the Sogaris Group, which specializes in the development of urban fright projects, a short-line service will deliver goods between Paris and surrounding communities and the northern region of Ile-de-France. XPO will provide the road transport, using natural-gas powered vehicles.

Source: Logistics Manager

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 03/23/2016 | 11:37 AM


Why apparel startups are returning to the U.S. (It’s not for mom and apple pie). Will Amazon’s logistics investments cause it to miss q1 numbers? And another study on the dangers--and sheer stupidity--of distracted driving.


Logistics in the Land of Enchantment

Albuquerque-area governments have launched a study to determine the feasibility of the region as a logistics hub. When other ways to attract businesses and jobs fall short, it seems, might as well become a logistics hub.

Source: Albuquerque Journal

Why Clothing Startups Are Returning to American Factories

The reason, according to this article in Fast Company, is not because of patriotism or marketing but to gain supply chain advantages. “It can take 10 months to go from placing an order at a Chinese factory to receiving a shipment of clothes,” says one CEO. “By using local factories, I'm able to meet demand much quicker.”

Source: Fast Company

Spend now, pay later for the e-com elephant?

Will Amazon.com’s large logistics investments cause it to miss analysts’ first-quarter earnings estimates, Forbes asks? To that, we answer: We don’t know. (Actually we were more interested in Jeff Bezos’ get-up in the accompanying foto).

Source: Forbes.com

Protesters disrupt San Bernardino town hall meeting on logistics

Fifteen protestors wearing surgical masks to complain about construction-related air pollution protested a San Bernardino town hall meeting on logistics investments. They dispersed quietly after calls were placed to local law enforcement. San Bernardino is near the massive Inland Empire distribution complex where many Asian imports are moved to after leaving the Port of Los Angeles or the Port of Long Beach.

Source: San Bernardino Sun

The dangers of distracted driving

The risk of distracted driving has increased in recent years with the proliferation of smartphones. A Department of Transportation-commissioned report from the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute states that 5 seconds is the average time a person’s eyes are off the road while texting. At 55 miles per hour, driving for 5 seconds while texting equates to traveling the length of a football field without looking at the roadway. In response, 46 states have enacted bans against text messaging while driving, and 14 states have banned all handheld cellphone use while driving.

Source: Transport Topics

Supply chain disruptions in China ahead of G20?

There may be supply chain disruptions in China starting this summer as Chinese factories close entirely or partially close ahead of September’s G20 economic summit in Hangzhou. The closures may start as early as June as part of an effort to reduce dirty air in major cities ahead of the meeting of the world’s largest economies.

Source: Air Cargo News

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 03/16/2016 | 1:02 PM


Alibaba prepares for the ultimate logistics war with Amazon. The perils of empty store shelves. And the six issues (only six?) that keeps practitioners awake at night.

Alibaba preps for logistics arms race

The Chinese e-commerce giant’s Cainiao logistics arm has raised billions of renminbi strengthen its supply chain in preparation for what is expected to be the ultimate cage match with Amazon.com. Cainiao is BABA's logistics joint venture created three years ago with the goal of supporting BABA's logistics network across China and driving cross-border e-commerce while leveraging big data to enhance efficiency.

Source: Seeking Alpha

The perils of empty shelves

Online shopping has brought the limitations of the current supply chain to light. The combination of online and in-store picking is resulting in items flying off the shelves twice as fast. The shelves can only hold so many inventory turns, requiring store associates to run back and forth from the shelves to the back room in order to restock. Too often, there is no replenishment inventory in the backroom, leaving the shelf empty. Consumers are confronted with a decision: do they purchase a substitution or do they look for the product at a different store? Research shows consumers are evenly split, a scenario that hurts the manufacturer and retailer. Half the time the consumer will be so brand loyal that they will leave the store to purchase the same item elsewhere, giving the manufacturer the sale. The other half of the time, a consumer will make a brand substitution, giving the retailer the sale, but not the manufacturer.

Source: ES3

Waiting for logistics magic in Indonesia

The new president of Indonesia, “Joko” Widodo, is pinning much of the archipelago’s economic future on dramatic improvements in its inefficient logistics network, which sucks up more than 25 percent of GDP. On March 10, Widodo simultaneously inaugurated the operation of 11 bonded logistics centers (PLBs) in the provinces of Jakarta, Banten, East Kalimantan, West Java and Bali. However, as the Jakarta Post reports, some Indonesian business players prefer to lower their expectations, saying they need time to learn what actual benefits and incentives would be offered by the new facilities.

Source: The Jakarta Post

Sinotrans to shift its service focus following acquisition

Sinotrans & CSC Holdings Co, China's second largest shipping company by fleet size, will focus on developing integrated logistics, energy transportation and port businesses after its acquisition by China Merchants Group, a state-owned conglomerate based in Hong Kong. The acquisition, aimed at optimizing shipping and multimodal logistics resources, as well as enhancing the country's energy security, was approved by government regulators in December.

Source: China Daily

Japan Post to pursue acquisitions in and out of logistics

Japan Post Holdings, which had been rumored to be acquiring Deutsche Post DHL’s global freight forwarding unit (a rumor that DPDHL Chairman Frank Appel vociferously denied) will pursue more acquisitions both in logistics and outside the category, according to DealStreet Asia.

Source: DealStreet Asia

Carbon-conscious shippers can choose green ocean freight option

Shippers who want to move ocean freight without incurring the carbon footprint of traditional container ships now have an option to choose the “Green Danmar” service, a carbon-efficient ocean freight service from DHL Global Forwarding that offers full container shipping with that is over 5 percent more carbon efficient than the industry average.

Source: DHL

Six issues that keep supply chain managers up at night

A survey from professional association APICS and Michigan State University has identified six of the top problems that keep supply chain executives from getting a good night’s sleep. The issues include capacity and resource availability, retaining new hires in supply chain jobs, and managing complexity in a time of huge growth in stock keeping units (SKUs).

Source: APICS

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 03/09/2016 | 8:30 AM


Mobile technology works for truckers. The high-stakes world of the Amazon marketplace. And Target gets buys investing in its supply chain

The `Appy’ Trucker

Mobile technology is making it easier than ever for truckers to find profitable loads and keep more of their income by dis-intermediating middlemen, the Economist writes

Source: The Economist

Target Corp. to invest $2 billion annually in supply chain

Target Corp. will launch a campaign in 2017 to spend $2 billion to $2.5 billion per year in a race to upgrade its supply chain and technology infrastructure. CEO Brian Cornell revealed the plan in a briefing with analysts last week, blaming the firm’s "incredibly complex supply chain" for lower sales in 2015.

Source: Reuters

Customer Ratings, Pricing Competitions and Secondary Market Distributors: Inside the High Stress, High Reward World of Amazon Marketplace

Pharmapacks, an e-commerce health and beauty retailer, expects to do $140 million in revenue in 2016. Nearly half of that will come from Amazon Marketplace, where, in order to maintain a visible presence on product pages, the company has to resolve customer complaints, outprice the competition, and back it all up with an agile, efficient warehousing and distribution operation that sometimes relies on alternate source suppliers for inventory.

Source: Inc. Magazine

STB looking to prioritize freight rails over Amtrak: The Hill

The U.S. Surface Transportation Board is moving to invalidate a federal mandate that requires freight railroads to give preference to Amtrak on tracks that are shared between passenger and freight trains. The STB has said the mandate to prioritize passenger trains was not spelled out in federal law, although it has been enforced since Amtrak was established in the 1970s.

Source: The Hill

Amazon to open second brick-and-mortar bookstore

Amazon plans to open its second brick-and-mortar store in the coming months, adding a location at San Diego’s Westfield UTC mall to the retailer’s first storefront location in Seattle. Amazon has already hung signs on the building and posted job openings for managers, booksellers and “device enthusiasts.”

Source: San Diego Union Tribune

China to heavily promote logistics sector over next five years

China will promote the development of its logistics sector in the next five years to bolster economic growth and deepen supply-side reform. More innovative policies will be unveiled during 2016-2020 to lower taxes and reduce cost in the logistics sector, said the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC).

Source: Hinxua News Agency

U.K. e-commerce growth hampered by dearth of warehouse space

E-commerce growth in the U.K. could be affected by a lack of warehouse space to handle fulfillment and deliveries

Source: Logistic Manager

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 03/02/2016 | 7:02 AM


India’s civil unrest and the supply chain impact. Chinese logistics firm readies U.S. IPO. And WIT announces finalists for `distinguished woman in logistics’ award

Used Phones are Full of Previous Owners’ Data

Recycling of consumer electronics and other high-tech products is big business, and there are a number of third-party logistics companies (3PLs) that are involved in that particular segment of reverse logistics. Cell phones, of course, represent a significant portion of returned consumer electronics. According to findings by researchers working for a technology security firm, some companies that are handling returns, repairs, and refurbishing of cell phones may be skipping a step or two.

Source: The Atlantic.com

Unrest in India and the Impact on the Global Supply Chain

This might not be on your radar, but if you do business in South Asia, it should be. C.H. Robinson’s Harpreet Singh, ocean product head for South Asia, reports in the company’s “Transportfolio” blog that civil unrest in India is having a notable effect on cargo movements in the northern part of that country. Protests in Delhi and neighboring states have led to blockades of roads, highways, and rail lines. Since the protests began, Singh writes, more than 1,000 trains have been canceled, train stations and cargo trains have been burned, and movements of containers to and from northern India have been restricted. “The widespread nature of the protests have made it difficult to connect cargo to their designated vessels, and congestion will be experienced at both inland depots and ports for some time, even after the situation is resolved,” he writes.

Source: C.H. Robinson Worldwide Inc.

Barnes & Noble merges online and physical traits with hybrid bookstore plan

Barnes & Noble is designing a bookstore model to combine elements of online and traditional brick and mortar shopping experiences. Following in the strategy of rival Amazon.com, which recently opened its first-ever physical store in Seattle, Barnes & Noble will launch the new shop sometime in 2016, company CEO Ron Boire told an e-commerce conference.

Source: Internet Retailer

Whole Foods invests in Instacart food delivery upstart

Specialty grocery chain Whole Foods market usually relies on sumptuous layouts of fresh produce and premium deli top attract its shoppers, but the food retailer opened a new front in the competition for Americans’ grocery dollars last week when it reportedly launched plans to invest in Instacart, the same-day, food home delivery startup.

Source: Re/Code

Head of North Carolina’s global logistics center resigns

Charles Edwards, head of North Carolina’s Center for Global Logistic since 2012, resigned this week to take a job as director of strategic planning for the state’s Department of Transportation.

Source: Triad Business Journal

Chinese logistics firm readies US IPO: Report

Chinese logistics firm ZTO Express is planning a U.S. initial public offering later this year or early 2017, according to a report. The listing, which could raise up to $2 billion, could be the largest in the U.S. from a Chinese company since Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.’s $25 billion IPO.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Finalists named for `distinguished woman in logistics' award

Women in Trucking Inc. announced the three finalists for its “Distinguished Woman in Logistics” award. They are Elizabeth Fretheim, director, logistics sustainability, Walmart, Inc;

Liz Lasater, chief executive officer, Red Arrow Logistics, and Shelley Simpson, chief marketing officer, executive vice president and president, integrated capacity solutions and truck, J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc. The winner will be announced at next month’s Transportation Intermediaries Association’s (TIA) annual meeting in San Antonio.

Source: Heavy-Duty Trucking

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 02/24/2016 | 10:59 AM

GE’s big bet on data and analytics. FedEx, UPS face dual threats to B2C delivery share, investment firm says. And a review and ratings site for truckers and brokers.

The danger of fatigue cracks on container cranes

The Port Equipment Manufacturers Association (PEMA) has published an information paper on the structural examination of container handling cranes in ports and terminals. The paper is designed to increase understanding of the risks posed by fatigue failure, highlight the importance of structural examination and give practical guidance to help terminal personnel to detect cracks through visual examination of ship-to-shore (STS), rail mounted gantry (RMG) and rubber tyred gantry (RTG) container handling cranes. 

Source: PEMA

GE’s big bet on data and analytics

GE has bet big on the Industrial Internet — the convergence of industrial machines, data, and the Internet. The company is putting sensors on gas turbines, jet engines, and other machines; connecting them to the cloud; and analyzing the resulting flow of data. The goal: identify ways to improve machine productivity and reliability. This MIT Sloan Management Review case study looks at how this traditional manufacturer is remaking itself into a modern digital business.

Source: MIT

Evaluating three identification technologies

Laser, Camera, RFID? How can you ensure the best match between your needs and the available AIDC technologies? This white paper provides a concise overview of their benefits and limitations.

Source: SICK

Ralph Lauren boots XPO from North Carolina warehouse

XPO has been on a roll in recent months, consolidating the logistics sector through takeovers of large firms like Con-Way Inc. and Norbert Dentressangle. But the firm got a rare piece of bad news last week when fashion retailer Ralph Lauren announced it would dismiss XPO and assume control of its own warehousing and inventory management in a North Carolina facility.

Source: Retail Dive

Iran buys 5,000 train cars from Russian firm

Iran continued to rapidly rebuild its logistics infrastructure after agreeing to strict nuclear enrichment caps in a deal allowing it to rejoin the global economic community. In the latest move, the country said it planned to take delivery of 5,000 freight cars from a Russian train equipment firm.

Source: Tasnim News Agency

FedEx, UPS face twin threats to delivery business: Morgan Stanley

Investment firm Morgan Stanley & Co. says UPS Inc. and FedEx Corp. face two major threats to their ground shipping business: selective insourcing from e-commerce giants like Amazon (AMZN) on one end, and last-mile delivery competition on the other.

Source: Barron’s

AAR gets visual in touting value of rail industry

The Association of American Railroads (AAR) has debuted the latest version of its nine-year-old “Freight Rail Works” campaign, which goes heavy on the visuals to describe freight rail’s ongoing private investments in building, growing and maintaining the nation's network, and to demonstrate the railroads’ “unique and integral role” in moving 54 tons for every American each year.

Source: Railway Age

Company forms Yelp-like model for trucking reviews

A Richmond, Va.-based company called “ScoopMonkey” wants to be the trucking industry’s version of Yelp, the wildly popular review and ratings app. ScoopMonkey offers The website offers a way for industry pros to post reviews and ratings of carriers and brokers. ScoopMonkey CEO Eddie Peloke and Richmond entrepreneur Pat Hull said the rating system will help make the trucking industry safer and more efficient

Source: Richmond Times-Dispatch

Three “Aerotropolises” powering the global economy

This blog post from UPS identifies three logistics hubs that play an important role in international air cargo routes: Zhengzhou, China; Dubai World Central, and Panama City.

Source: UPS Longitudes

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 02/17/2016 | 10:36 AM

Amazon takes on the lord almighty. Switzerland goes underground to develop a national logistics network. And DOT rings in its golden anniversary.


Amazon Building Global Delivery Business to Take On Alibaba

Bloomberg Business reporter Spencer Soper got ahold of an internal report from Amazon that envisions a global delivery network. Called “Dragon Boat,” this project is continuing as planned, according to internal sources, and would spur the launch of a new venture called “Global Supply Chain by Amazon.”

Source: BloombergBusiness

Revolutionize your product packaging strategy in 2016

While many companies overlook their packaging supply chain, there are huge opportunities to reduce lead times and cost by creating a “customized packaging supplier network,” according to this article from Steve Schoultz, vice president of Sourcing and Packaging for the packaging company InnerWorkings.

Source: Packaging World

Companies are reimagining business processes with algorithms

This Harvard Busines Review article discusses how some business are using “machine reengineering” to quickly redesign their processes. The redesigns are based on the predictive capabilities of machine-learning algorithms. The article discusses a global consumer food company implemented a collision avoidance system that helped alert delivery drivers of potential dangers.

Source: Harvard Business Review

Real estate executives predict logistics rents to peak in 2016

Industrial property is at a premium, vacancies are at all-time lows, and rents have been steadily rising. But that multi-year cycle may end this year as developers begin to add large amounts of supply, and more so-called spec property hits the market.

Source: National Real Estate Investor

Under the mountains for the Swiss supply chain

Switzerland is planning a mega-project called “Cargo sous terrain” that is envisioned as a nation-wide, underground, autonomous transport network. Specifically the system comprises a three-lane network hosting electric, drone delivery capsules. The vehicles are to be designed around the standard cargo Euro-pallet (being able to hold two), and will travel via an induction rail process at 30 kilometers per hour, 24/7. Switzerland has long been at the crossroads of pan-European transport, but its mountainous terrain has posed unique challenges.

Source: Global Risk Insights

FedEx ramps up its charitable giving

FedEx Corp. rolled out a charitable giving program, FedEx Cares, which will invest $200 million in more than 200 communities over five years. The Memphis-based delivery giant increased its corporate giving budget by 35% to meet the goal during the fiscal year that began July 1, said Patrick Fitzgerald, senior vice president, FedEx Integrated Marketing Communications. FedEx officials said $50 million of the commitment would be in donated shipping and logistics services for disaster relief efforts and special transportation.

Source: Memphis Commercial Appeal via Transport Topics

DOT holds golden anniversary celebration

The U.S. Department of Transportation was created in late 1966 and started operations in early 1967. Getting a jump on the commemoration, DOT held a 50th anniversary celebration last week hosted by Secretary Anthony Foxx and featuring six of his predecessors, including 93-year-old Alan Boyd, the first DOT secretary.

Source: Transport Topics

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 02/10/2016 | 7:57 AM


The challenge of revamping supply chains to support omnichannel fulfillment. Logistics M&A continues active. And an online professional connection site for forklift drivers.

Redesigning The Supply Chain Organization for Omnichannels: Why Is This So Challenging?

As Supply Chain Management (SCM) continues to expand in its understanding, its impacts on stakeholder value, and its role in the business and operational strategies of each company, the question of the most effective organizational design has risen to the executive suite along with the awareness of its growing influence. 

Source: Tompkins International

The predictive enterprise: Where data science meets supply chain

Most companies are sitting on a goldmine of untapped supply chain data that has the ability to give organizations a competitive edge. Yet, according to a recent Accenture survey, only 17 percent of executives say they have implemented analytics in one or more of their supply chain functions.

Source: DHL

Shippers fight climate change by picking cleaner cargo vessels

International shippers usually choose a maritime carrier based on variables like cost, speed, security, or technology, but now a site called Shipping Efficiency lets users search a database that ranks 76,000 cargo ships by their carbon dioxide emissions, and pick a partner based on environmental impact.

Source: Shipping Efficiency

Logistics firms pursue mergers and acquisitions despite modest economic outlook

The logistics industry continues to exercise caution due to high inventories and the decelerating global economic rebound, according to SDR Ventures, a Colorado investment bank that releases a quarterly M&A trends report on the sector. Despite that uncertain outlook, the industry is showing optimism by investing in improving operations and keeping up a quick pace on mergers and consolidations.

Source: SDR Ventures, Inc.

Port of Boston buys security scanner for shipping containers

Carriers moving shipping containers through the Port of Boston could soon see their containers scanned for drugs or radioactive material with a $16 million x-ray scanner the size of a car-wash building. Designed by a former MIT physics professor, this SmartScan 3D machine can differentiate between substances that look identical on conventional x-ray screens, such as cocaine and salt.

Source: Boston Globe

Jobcase targets blue-collar workers left out of LinkedIn 

For a doctor, engineer, or bank executive, managing a career network has never been easier, with sites such as LinkedIn offering ways to make professional connections and climb to the next job. But what about retail clerks, landscapers, and forklift operators?Jobcase.com, a Cambridge, Mass.-based company, is trying to become the networking site for a large but overlooked segment of the U.S. labor market, helping cooks, cleaners, and construction workers find jobs, build skills, and support others in similar roles.

Source: Boston Globe

Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 02/03/2016 | 8:39 AM


Prologis credits e-commerce with revenue gain. US 3PL market may hit $94 billion by 2020. And AWESOME sets April meeting.

Prologis rides e-commerce wave to rising warehouse rental revenue

The global warehouse and industrial real estate firm Prologis Inc. pointed to rising e-commerce activity as a prime reason that the firm’s revenue jumped from $1.8 billion in 2014 to $2.2 billion in 2015, since online shopping trends drove higher demand for DC space than retail store replenishment.

Source: Prologis, Inc.

Iran emerges from economic sanctions with CMA CGM partnership

Following its agreement to strict caps on nuclear enrichment activity in a July 2015 deal, Iran is making up for lost time with a flurry of logistics deals that could return the country to international trade. The latest is a partnership signed last week between French container and shipping group CMA CGM and the Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL).

Source: Reuters

Global manufacturing could drive U.S. 3PL market to $94 billion by 2020

Third party logistics (3PL) providers in the U.S. could be worth $94 billion by 2020 as rising production by global manufacturing companies create steep logistics demand for transporting raw materials to factories and finished goods to retailers and distributors, according to technology research firm Technavio.

Source: Technavio

Forklift telematics data: Moving from reactive to proactive

Organizations that leverage predictive analytics have a leg up on the competition, studies show. But before predictive models can be developed, organizations need a clear understanding of its precursors, namely connecting, monitoring, and analyzing. So where does the material handling industry stand?

Source: TotalTrax, Inc.

Global market survey on port equipment deliveries

The Port Equipment Manufacturers Association (PEMA) has publically released its latest market surveys on global container port equipment deliveries. Prepared annually, the reports are key elements in the Association’s work of providing independent intelligence on handling equipment and technology trends in the ports and terminals sector.

Source: Port Equipment Manufacturers Association

A sweet comeback: Hostess Brands builds a new supply chain from scratch

Yes, the iconic company shut down in November 2012. But fans of Hostess know that there was a second act to the story. The brands and certain factories were purchased out of bankruptcy in April 2013. The brand was then re-launched in July 2013. That left just a few months to build a new supply chain from scratch. Steve Banker talked to Matt Kunz, senior vice president of supply chain at Hostess Brands , LLC about this comeback.

Source: Forbes.com

“AWESOME” meeting for women supply chain leaders in April

The fourth annual Achieving Women’s Excellence in Supply Chain Operations, Management, and Education (AWESOME) symposium, to be held April 27–29 at Nike Inc.’s headquarters in Portland, Ore., promises to be—sorry, we can’t help ourselves—awesome. The organization, which serves women in executive leadership roles in supply chain, logistics, and associated fields, plans to include panel discussions, “Up Close” conversations with industry movers and shakers, and sessions on current hot topics, including supply chain innovation, what it will take to achieve gender parity, and leadership lessons that will help women move into the C-suite.


Chain links: What we're reading this week

By Mark Solomon | 01/27/2016 | 9:40 AM


Collaborating to build superior material handling systems. Amazon’s air cargo delivery strategy questioned. And a yen for the logistics of cage-free hens.


Developing a successful ownership strategy

Procuring and installing a sophisticated automated material handling system is a rewarding and high-energy venture typically involving a broad, cross-functional team.

Source: Dematic

Do you have control over your inbound freight?

Transportation Management software is the only smart way to manage and move outbound freight. But outbound freight represents just a fraction of your overall freight operations.

Source: Best Transport

Dayton, Ohio, gives Columbus a run for its money as a center of logistics activity and jobs

Columbus, Ohio, has rightfully received plenty of press over the years for the significant role it plays as one of the country’s biggest multimodal logistics hubs. But Columbus is not the U.S. Midwest’s only place to be when it comes to logistics and distribution. Nearby Dayton also generates a lot of revenue and jobs from logistics activity—some $2.5 billion in economic activity and 19,000 jobs, according to a report commissioned by the Dayton Area Logistics Association, which operates under the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce.

Source: Dayton Daily News

Macy’s picks RFID to support omnichannel shopping

There has been a lot of talk about how brick-and-mortar stores can be used to fulfill online orders. Here is a short article that details how one major retailer is accomplishing this.

Source: Chain Store Age

Johnson and Tyco could merge in supply chain mash-up

Two leading supply chain technology providers mat be in talks to merge, in a move that would further consolidate the industry and create a corporate giant with $50 billion in global revenue. Batteries and HVAC provider Johnson Controls Inc. is in advanced talks to combine with retail-industry and fire suppression tech maker Tyco International PLC.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

Seko adds aerospace logistics division

Seko Logistics has established a division dedicated to supporting the aserospace sector, an effort to push Seko deeper into supporting the massive global vertical

Source: Air Cargo World

The complicated logistics of cage free eggs

The practice of getting cage free eggs to market keeps hens—and logistics practitioners—awake at night.

Source: Wired

Barclays research note questions Amazon’s air cargo network strategy

Investment firm Barclays wonders why Amazon.com needs to build a costly air cargo network to speed deliveries when it can accomplish the same objective by erecting more local and regional fulfillment centers.

Source: Air Cargo World

The opinions expressed herein are those solely of the participants, and do not necessarily represent the views of Agile Business Media, LLC., its properties or its employees.


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