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Democratizing Global E-Commerce?

Democratizing Global E-Commerce?

Many small and mid-size enterprises (SMEs) report friction due to inflation and COVID. One way to rise above those headwinds is to expand both consumer and business-to-business e-commerce sales. But many SMEs don’t have the spend or techno skills to form a winning strategy to compete with the e-commerce big players who dominate the market […]

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3PLs Show Off-the-Chart Growth

3PLs Show Off-the-Chart Growth

What accounts for the explosive growth of the 3PL sector this past year? The results of our 2022 3PL market surveys—through the Top 10 3PL Excellence Awards voting and Top 100 3PL Providers questionnaires—are striking: 84% of 3PL respondents showed significant growth in gross sales year over year, with 90% reporting profits are up. Nearly […]

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Reshoring? Not So Fast

Reshoring? Not So Fast

Reshoring might sound like the solution to the United States’ supply chain woes, but here’s why it is not a cure-all for current and future disruptions.

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Keith Biondo

Artificial and Human Intelligence: An Unbeatable Combination

Investment in logistics technology—$26 billion in the past seven years—is white hot right now. Here’s a small sampling of the types of solutions that venture capitalists arefinancing: An artificial intelligence (AI)-driven demand-prediction engine that helps lifestyle brands forecast how many units of a particular item will sell. The mission? To better match global inventory levels […]

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Keith Biondo

Rowenta Irons Out Inventory Challenges

Where do I go when it is too painful to watch TV? To my garage workbench. As it happens, my daughter had a project for me. Her pricey Rowenta iron was staining and scorching clothes. I can’t fix what’s going on in the world, but I’ll try my hand at this! Having broken several appliances […]

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Keith Biondo

Bullwhip or Just Bull?

Are shipping lines pricing themselves out of business? Blame the bullwhip effect, a distribution channel phenomenon in which demand forecasts yield increasing swings in inventory. Let’s take that idea a bit further. Financial pressures on publicly traded companies drive short-term policies that please The Street analysts to satisfy investor expectations. Yielding to those pressures sometimes […]

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Keith Biondo

You Won’t Get Fooled Again

Sometimes a kick in the pants is a step forward. The past two years have certainly been kicking it, and not in a good way for many of you. Stress of the type we are still going through can be incentive to change business practices. Incremental changes are a normal part of standard business practices. […]

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Keith Biondo

Robots Do Yardwork, Too

Efficient warehouse operations provide the levels of service that customers demand as America’s economy scales up. In many instances, yard operations impede that efficiency. Safety, driver facilities, cooperation, and consideration for truckers’ time are ongoing challenges. One driver tells us that a yard he regularly serves is "like a moonscape." The confluence of e-commerce growth […]

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Keith Biondo

Unleash Short Sea?

The ports around the Great Lakes would love to help offset some of the pain of the horror show called the "shipping crisis." Guess what. They can’t by law. Thank the Harbor Maintenance Fee (HMF), a well-intended policy perfect for the 1980s, along with related regulations, for sidelining port capacity around the Great Lakes. The […]

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Keith Biondo

Twinning Your Supply Chain from Google

Google once again is helping to democratize business solutions that were previously available only to the Fortune 1000. Its two new supply chain management solutions—Supply Chain Twin and Supply Chain Pulse—provide a powerful business tool for small and mid-size enterprises. “Siloed and incomplete data is limiting the visibility companies have into their supply chains,” says […]

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Keith Biondo

Dollar Tree—Winning Through Logistics

What can a great logistics operation do for a company in this economy? Lots more than move boxes around, as it turns out. Take the logistics team at Dollar Tree as an example. Over the years, the discount variety store has invested in the kind of logistics operations associates who keep the company financially sound […]

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Keith Biondo

Other Reasons Why Supply Chain Stress Won’t End Soon

Our "new normal" global consumption reality won’t be ending soon. It’s not just e-commerce, virus buying, and the resultant impact on transport lift availability that’s driving shortages. Other factors augment long-term stress on your ability to marshal supplies and source transport to serve customers. Millennials with buying power, and there are lots of them, will […]

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Keith Biondo

Catch Me When I Fall

A trust fall is a team-building exercise where the one doing the falling willingly trusts that those standing behind will catch them before they hit bottom. We chose the trust fall as an apt theme for our annual third-party logistics edition. Whether you voluntarily fall or are shoved by business realities—pandemic, labor shortages, remote workforces, […]

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Keith Biondo

EV Power Play

The U.S. electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing sector is about to get a sales boost from the Biden Administration. The EV market has been rocking because of the continued growing interest in sustainability, especially now that the bleeding-edge vehicle phase is behind us. President Biden confirmed that EVs would get a stimulus in the not-yet-passed multi-trillion-dollar […]

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Keith Biondo

Robots and People: Co-Evolving

Robots and people are adjusting their symbiotic relationship in logistics. Our recent robotics coverage (Feb. 2021) generated a good amount of audience feedback, most related to the growing importance and essential need for humans in logistics. It’s true that the stresses created by the virus economy spawned an increase in investing in automation to take […]

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Keith Biondo

GM & Kroger: Transformers

The interconnection between advanced manufacturing, automation, and supply chain management had a boost in the past year. Part of that boost was due to the virus economy, but most was due to the genius and creativity of those seeking solutions to tough business challenges amplified by ever-evolving customer demands. Transformation. Just as the silo-crashing impact […]

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Keith Biondo

The President’s 2021 Trade Policy

The Biden Administration’s new trade policy report is filled with laudable goals such as beating COVID-19, American family relief, and the Build Back Better initiative. But should these goals be the basis of U.S. trade policy or negotiating position with other countries? Do our economic competitors enter into trade negotiations with the United States with […]

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Keith Biondo

Buddy, Can You Spare a Can?

According to a CNBC investigation, shipping lines rejected U.S. export containers worth hundreds of millions of dollars during the last quarter of 2020. Empties were loaded and shipped back east to be filled with Chinese exports. But press reports blaming “congestion” are off the mark. Those empties are getting moved and loaded on ships somehow. […]

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Felecia Stratton

A Valid Question

Recently I was interviewed for a popular supply chain and logistics blog. The interviewer asked this question: Has the name of the magazine been a deterrent because it doesn’t encompass the full breadth of content you provide? A valid question. My answer: It has not been a deterrent, but sometimes it does need explanation. So […]

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