All articles by Malcolm Ramsay – Page 4

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    Closing the gap


    Eastern Europe continues to see steady investment in its manufacturing and supply base and with ongoing growth expected in Russia, the region should grow more than Western Europe. But logistics still needs focus, writes Malcolm Wheatley.A long way to go for logistics;Constraints for vehicle logistics;A growing supply base;A mostly positive ...

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    BLG sets up Chinese JV, avoids going inland


    BLG Logistics has made a move to work directly within the Chinese market with the signing of a letter of understanding for a new joint venture with the Chinese supply chain provider Cinko SCM.The scope of the agreement mainly covers imports and exports, rather than inland distribution, an area in ...

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    US awaits bill on infrastructure spending


    At the time of writing, US president Barack Obama was pushing congress to pass a new transportation bill before it was set to expire at the end of September. The bill provides funding for highway construction, bridge repair and public transport among other projects. Obama has warned that even a ...

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    The importance of developing e-Port


    Rescheduling the pastSuccess over speedMazda’s e-Port system is revitalising compound system management. Malcolm Wheatley looks at how, from a modest investment, the manufacturer has achieved real-time visibility and boosted labour productivity with predictive scheduling.Visit one of the American ports through which Mazda imports vehicles from Japan and you’ll Vlikely see ...

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    Clouding communications


    Low costs and minimal hardware considerations have enticed some of the industry’s biggest suppliers to conduct their business on cloud networks. Malcolm Wheatley looks at how SaaS and cloud technology are transforming financial operations and establishing themselves as collaborative tools in supply chain management.Freedom of the cloud;Overcoming conservatism;Connecting and collaborating.It ...

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    Changes from coast to coast


    The rise of exports and the spectre of JapanIncreasing competition on the East CoastNew players on the West CoastRichmond on the rise againWho will emerge next?As imports recover and exports grow through North American ports, a complex mix of factors from currency appreciation to the Japanese earthquake is forcing change ...

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    After the disaster in Japan


    The tsunami and earthquake in Japan have produced soul-searching about how the industry should react. But there will not be a knee-jerk reaction, and well-established practices will not be thrown into reverseKey industries positions questioned;Minimising impact of disasters.Japan’s devastating earthquake and tsunami in March put a significant proportion of the ...

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    Tier survivors


    The recession has consolidated the tier supply chain, forcing those who have managed to survive to become stronger and more competitive. But that has to be reflected in their own supply chain efficiency as well.The new normalA lot of work left to be doneA 'no silo' approachEarning a profit as ...

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    TMS takes hold


    Considering how long TMS has been around for, there has been poor uptake in automotive. But that is changing, and now it is being applied to both in- and outbound movements with obvious successTMS uptake is rareCutthroat conditions nurture TMS uptakeThe business case for inboundThe real benefit of TMSQuality or ...

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    Vying for custom


    Everything but the kitchen sinkMazda sells the benefitsThe GM approachBrand integrityMaking models accessibleCustomisation can be a simple addition of decals, or a full conversion for wheelchair access, and the degree to which manufacturers want to outsource this operation varies as much as the processes themselves, writes Malcolm Wheatley.At Daimler and ...

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    No cost to spare


    The automotive aftermarket in Europe has become radically more competitive thanks to the Block Exemption and global sourcing. Malcolm Wheatley investigates the approaches carmakers and providers are taking to save costs and increase speed in the supply chainAll in fluxHonda Europe reshapes delivery approachCan't spare the profits from sparesOEMs need ...

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    2nd hand cars need 1st class logistics


    A market in need of logistics innovationGetting volumes up, and complexity downWith the rise of internet auctions, the used car sector is becoming more regional and international, stirring greater demand for efficient logistics services, reports Malcolm Wheatley.Used car transactions take place thousands of times a day–in corporate parking lots, rental ...

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    Finding a common language for vehicle logistics


    The costs of not having standardsEurope is behindThe outbound chain is characterised by OEMs and LSPs each using their own words and codes when it comes to things like scheduling, tracking and payment. Malcolm Wheatley discovers some progress toward standardisation, but will OEMs invest in change?For the two companies involved, ...

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    Space for rent


    The automotive warehouse real estate market has taken a major hit, but it remains a dynamic sector where the requirements are becoming more and more specificA different game in AsiaThe shape of automotive warehousingInbound warehouses versus aftermarketFuture trends for warehousing locationsThe world’s automotive industry has had a torrid three years: ...

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    Making plans reality


    The dividing line between IT vendors offering planning systems, and those offering execution systems may no longer hold.The split between planning and executionDownturn brings the two sides togetherBuild-to-order productionIn April, as the Icelandic volcano filled European air space with ash clouds, leading to much of its closure, the assembly lines ...

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    Vehicles in the box come out of the closet


    Container growth for smaller volume destinationsA more frequent service Ro-ro vs container: the cost equationMoving vehicles in containers door to doorMoving vehicles by containers is becoming more common for shipping vehicles in lower volumes and higher frequencies, particularly to and from developing markets. But the potential benefit might be farther ...

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    Track & trace: do we need the ‘next best thing’?


    The automotive industry has been talking up the potential of RFID for decades, but with budgets strapped, there appears to be no rush to bin the barcodeAuto's enduring affair with the barcodeRFID still only used in fragmentsTrack what is sensibleThe future is now... or soonAt the end of the production ...