The supply chain behind Wimbledon’s tennis balls!
Every year, the Wimbledon Tennis championship captivates millions of tennis fans from across the globe. While the players like Djokovic and the Williams sisters steal most of the media attention, have you ever given much thought to the humble tennis ball?
An interesting article featured in the manufacturer this week, highlights the amazing journey a tennis ball makes before being served up on center court. For over 100 years, Slazenger has been the official tennis ball supplier at Wimbledon. Although operations were once localized to Northern England, the modern supply chain is now mind-bogglingly complicated, stretching across 4 continents and encompassing a total of 11 different countries.
This smashing example of globalization reflects the lengths manufacturers have to go to nowadays in order to produce goods as effectively as possible. With materials sourced from the USA, New Zealand, Japan and Greece (just to name a few); the average Wimbledon Tennis ball travels a staggering 50,570 miles!
To read more about this amazing journey, click here.
The seven deadly sins of the supply chain
It does not matter whether a business operates in the automotive industry or the video games sector: at the end of the day, no organization is immune from the fatal consequences of poor supply chain management. While many factors can contribute to the demise of a business, a recent report highlights seven of the biggest supply chain pitfalls.
Included as one of the sins are the emergence of offshoring and consequently the complexity of modern supply chains which have severely hampered visibility, making effective management more challenging than ever. In addition, cost pressures have also been listed. Slashing costs has led to some businesses making severe ethical compromises. Another factor noted as one of the seven points of failure is the impact social media sites have on businesses as supply chain operations become increasingly open to public scrutiny.
Can you think of any other supply chain sins?
New Trends set to hit the high street
An interesting report has been released this week highlighting how disruptive technology could impact the retail sector. At present, online sales only account for a relatively small proportion of total retail sales. However, as retailers shift their focus from the traditional bricks-and-mortar model and invest in a broader array of retail channels, growth in e-retailing seems inevitable.
However, this move towards online retailing could have a profound impact on the supply chain as the internet becomes a fierce battle ground between international competitors. The report suggests that in order to remain competitive, retailers must differentiate themselves by cutting product lead times and offering customers more opportunities to customize their purchases.
While the emergence of e-retailing could revolutionize how businesses connect with customers, the report also considers how new technologies such as 3D printing and robotics hold great promise for retail operations.
Have a great weekend!