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Commentary: Are You Ready for Next Year?

August 25, 2005

This is the time of year when 2006 plans are developed and refined. Yet surprisingly few companies actually put plans on paper to help management and employees focus resources. Strong sales reports for August follow similar results for July, so why fix what's not broken? The expected summer slowdown never came for many distributors. Still, most executives seem to be dealing with increasingly aggressive pricing fights and are bracing for a downturn.

By all counts, there is some stability coming back into most U.S. distribution markets as acquisitions continue through the summer and companies report some very strong sales figures. But we are far from over in consolidating many smaller distributors who have been waiting for the right opportunity and upturn to cash out. So ...

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