Delphi, the US-based tier one supplier, has given Ryder System a 2010 Above & Beyond Award for services in supply chain management and logistics. The award, established in 2007 and presented annually, recognises Delphi suppliers for special service events that went beyond contractual obligations during the 2009 calendar year.
Ryder works extensively with Delphi in North America, with particular focus around the vital yet volatile US-Mexico border. Ryder provides crossdock services at Laredo and El Paso, Texas for Delphi material going to and from manufacturing plants in Mexico. Examples of cost reduction initiatives in the past year include implementing audits for the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT), reducing personnel charges and developing a system to return and reuse freight packing materials.
Ryder was one of ten suppliers from five countries to win the award.
Delphi, which emerged from bankruptcy last year with a smaller US manufacturing footprint, still has a significant presence in Mexico.
Ryder, which saw a 10% year-on-year revenue increase in its Supply Chain Solutions segment during the first quarter led by rebounding automotive volume, has seen a particular increase for activity in Mexico, according to Tom Jones (pictured), senior vice president and general manager for Ryder’s US Supply Chain Solutions. “From a business standpoint, we are seeing more activity in Mexico than we are in any other part of North America,” Jones told Automotive Logistics News in a recent interview at its Michigan headquarters in Novi.
Jones said that the recent increases in reports of carlet-related violence in Mexico do not appear to be disrupting the business climate. And while it certainly poses risks to border crossings, the Mexican border has never been an easy crossing, according to Jones. “Ryder has border capabilities in North America that we consider one of our main areas of expertise,” he said. “Part of our responsibility is to help manage those risks of supply chain disruption.”
Jones also acknowledged that the overall business activity for Ryder has greatly improved in 2010, with a large amount of the company’s growth this year coming from new customers (although he could not yet share which ones).
In 2009, Ryder saw decline in line with the hard-hit automotive sector, as well as with two of its largest customers, General Motors and Toyota. The company closed it South American and European operations last year, focusing instead on comprehensive transport and supply chain services in North America as well as freight consolidation in Asia. It’s a strategy that has helped the company focus on its core strengths, particularly in its home market in North America.

“We’ve found it best to focus on the areas where you have the most strength,” Jones said. “There are very few, if even one, truly global logistics players. A more reasonable strategy is to divide the globe up into several regions and serve core markets.”