March 10, 2007 - Modern Distribution Management

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March 10, 2007

Going Global

This article details two mid-sized distributors' experiences with global sourcing and is adapted from presentations at the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors' annual meeting, with additional information provided through follow-up interviews with MDM.

To use a cliché, the devil is in the details. Andrew Berlin, president of Berlin Packaging, says this has never been truer than when sourcing from China.

And one more cliché," he says. "You get out of it what you put into it."

Berlin should know. He's been sourcing from China for his customers and suppliers for almost 20 years, and understands the value of taking the time required to set up a profitable transaction rather than ...

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MDM Interview, Part 2: Wolseley’s European Ambitions

In Part II of MDM's interview with Wolseley CEO Chip Hornsby, he addresses the differences between the global building materials and HVAC/plumbing distributor's North American and European markets, and Wolseley's aim to grow significantly on the European mainland -doubling its market share every five to seven years.

MDM: Can you talk a little about the European distribution landscape?

Chip Hornsby: The first thing I had to understand -we laugh about it all the time -was that in fifth-grade geography they didn't teach us that there's another continent out there called the UK. And then there's Europe. And those 22 miles are bigger than the ocean between us and them. I get asked all ...

MDM Interview, Part 2: Wolseley’s European Ambitions Read More »

Home Depot to Refocus on Retail

Home Depot CEO Frank Blake reinforced his drive to refocus on the business' retail division at the company's annual investor and analyst conference at the end of February.

To that end, Blake told participants that acquisitions outside of the retail core won't be a priority for us. HD Supply acquisitions have slowed and will continue to, with the exception of White Cap's recent purchase of concrete distributor GSI General Materials.

Soon after the annual meeting - at which HD executives only briefly touched on the possible sale of HD Supply, and then only in response to a question - reports started to emerge on private equity firms' interest. Many analysts and industry-watchers expect the supply division to be sold, despite Blake's insistence that a decision has not ...

Home Depot to Refocus on Retail Read More »

Commentary: Time to Review Your Review Process

As this first quarter comes to a close, it's a good time to evaluate the annual plan created in September, or in January for those who subscribe to JIT strategic planning. This is when most plans start rotting on the shelf. The end-of-quarter flurry is too hectic to perform a disciplined review. Then a new cycle starts.

Perhaps you know where you are on the most important scale - your own internal sense of behind, on or ahead of plan year-to-date. Your sales force is crystal clear where they are. Most of the time that's good enough. But with as volatile as current markets, customers, competition and the economy are, your company might benefit from a more formal review process with your entire executive team. Consider a different approach to the typical rearview mirror ...

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MDM News Digest 3705

Grainger, Chicago, IL, distributor of facilities maintenance supplies, has released a new specialty catalog for plumbing products and supplies. Products offered through the catalog include water heaters and coolers, pipes, valves, fittings, fixtures, faucets and water filtration systems. The catalog is 316 pages, with more than 16,000 Plumbing, Valves and Fittings, of which 12,000 are new to Grainger's offering. An additional 1,500 products that are related to Plumbing bring the total to about 17,750 items. More ...

Nucor Corp., Charlotte, NC, has acquired 96 percent of Toronto-based Harris Steel for C$46.25 in cash per share. Nucor intends to eventually buy ...

MDM News Digest 3705 Read More »

U.S. Market Analysis: Janitorial Supplies

Janitorial Supplies represented a market in 2006 of $19.98 billion, according to estimates by Industrial Market Information, Minneapolis.

These charts show the top ten industries, by SIC code, consuming these products; and the 2006 end-user consumption of these groups sorted by the nine government market regions.

Click on Related Document below to see the charts and breakdown by end-user.


U.S. Market Analysis: Janitorial Supplies Read More »

MDM Inflation Index: January 2007

Modern Distribution Management's January Inflation Index, which measures a cross-section of industrial supplies, was up 0.59% from the previous month, and up 3.27% from January 2006.

Summary of&nbsp ; MDM Inflation Index for the past 12 months:

January 2007 Index 268.7
December 2006 Index&nbsp ; 267.1
November 2006 Index 266.5
October 2006 Index 265.9
September 2006 Index 265.6
August 2006 Index 265.2
July 2006 Index 264.0
June 2006 Index 263.0
May 2006 Index 262.1
April 2006 Index 262.1
March 2006 Index 262.1
Febuary 2006 Index 261.2
January 2006 Index 260.2

Please click below on Related Document to view a print-ready pdf of the&nbsp ; MDM Inflation Index for January 2007, listing the ten ...

MDM Inflation Index: January 2007 Read More »

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