Category Archives: Supply Chain Management

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International Trade: A New Dawn for North American Trade

The business community, lawmakers and even workers across North America breathed a collective sigh of relief on October 1, 2018, after the renegotiated NAFTA agreement was unveiled. Following negotiations that had become acrimonious, and fears that Canada might be left out, the newly dubbed United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) yielded significant but workable changes to cross-border trade … Continue reading this entry

GM's Planned Cuts Require Action by Its Suppliers

manufacturing
In the face of what General Motors’ CEO Mary Barra calls a “fast-changing market,” this week General Motors announced its plans to end the production of certain vehicles, reduce its North American work force by more than 10%, and idle five plants in the United States and Canada. General Motors also announced that it plans … Continue reading this entry

Strategies for Protecting Against Vendor Payment Fraud

balance sheet
Cybercrime is an ever-increasing threat from which manufacturers are not immune. Although reliable statistics are not available, one particular type of scheme that seems to be on the rise is vendor payment fraud.  In cases of vendor payment fraud, the fraudster poses as an existing supplier and provides the manufacturer with seemingly legitimate instructions changing … Continue reading this entry

3D Printing Continues Making Inroads in Auto Industry

3D printing
Additive manufacturing (aka 3D printing) has long been a growing part of the auto industry.   Companies started out using 3D printing for prototypes and small batch production.  As technology advanced, the role of 3D printing is rapidly increasing.  This week, several major players in the auto industry announced new developments for the role of 3D … Continue reading this entry

Force Majeure Best Practices – Hurricane Florence Edition

Hurricane
The threat presented by Hurricane Florence has forced government officials to order South Carolina residents to evacuate hurricane zones. Safety should always be the No. 1 priority for the millions of individuals and families affected by the storm. The mandatory evacuation and closure of many businesses and schools in the area has shut down a … Continue reading this entry

Raw Material and Commodity Purchasing – Key Concerns for Manufacturers

steel
On August 9, 2018, Original Equipment Suppliers Association (“OESA”) held its 2018 Automotive Commodities Event covering a variety of topics related to commodities purchasing, including strategies for price risk management, insights into future mixed material usage in the automotive industry, and legal strategies for navigating volatile commodity markets.  Highlights of the issues discussed during the … Continue reading this entry

New Exclusions Process Gives Automotive Companies the Possibility of Exemption from Section 232 Steel and Aluminum Tariffs

Automotive
On March 23rd, automotive companies that rely on imported steel and aluminum were confronted with new special tariffs of 25 percent on all imports of steel and tariffs of ten percent on all imports of aluminum, with temporary exclusions for Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, the member countries of the European Union, and South Korea. … Continue reading this entry

Overview of Distribution Supply Chain Options

Supply Chain
When determining how to sell a product in the marketplace, there are a number of supply chain options from which to choose, each with its own set of legal implications.  However, the primary consideration in determining how to sell a product should be what makes the most sense from a business perspective (for example, if … Continue reading this entry

Re-Thinking Supply Chain Contracts in the World of Connected Things

supply chain
As the pace of innovation increases at an ever faster rate, many products that traditionally may not have been thought of as involving computers or software are incorporating these elements.  In 2007, the iPhone revolutionized the public’s conceptions about what a phone should be.  Ever since, there has been a growing trend toward increasing connectivity … Continue reading this entry

Key Provisions for Supply Chain Contracts

Supply Chain
In the manufacturing industry, a company’s supply chain can be a source of both risk and value.  By paying careful attention to the terms of its supply chain contracts, a company can help to mitigate its risks while at the same time maximizing the value of its supply chain.  While no provision in a contract … Continue reading this entry

“Individualized Proof of Harm” Required in Robinson-Patman Secondary-Line Claim Prevents Class Certification

On April 7, 2017, the Northern District of California denied class certification to two proposed classes of wholesalers in ABC Distributing, Inc. v. Living Essentials LLC, Case No. 15-cv-02064 NC (N.D. Cal.), a secondary-line Robinson-Patman price discrimination case. Small wholesalers alleged that Living Essentials LLC (Living Essentials), maker of 5-Hour ENERGY® drinks, was giving preferential … Continue reading this entry

Sustainability Reporting Trends in the New Year – ’16 going on ‘17

If you’re feeling uncertain or confused about the future of sustainability reporting in the United States, you’re not alone. With the business world’s adoption of sustainability reports moving full steam ahead—and increasing hunger for such information and transparency from global consumers and investors—the new Trump administration is going in a completely different direction. This blog … Continue reading this entry

NAFTA Under the New Trump Administration

The election of Mr. Trump as the President of the United States has created considerable uncertainty regarding the U.S. investment climate. Chief among these uncertainties is the status of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), which President-Elect Trump repeatedly attacked for leading to the loss of U.S. manufacturing jobs. President-Elect Trump has vowed to renegotiate the … Continue reading this entry

Enjoy Your Labor Day!

The Manufacturing Industry Advisor team wishes you a safe and happy holiday weekend. We’ll be back to our regular posting soon. Thanks for your continued support of our blog!  … Continue reading this entry

Weathering the (Winter) Storm

Extreme winter weather can cause serious problems. For children, winter weather often means snow days and an escape from the confines of the classroom. For manufacturers, heavy snow and ice can mean absent workers, power outages, and supply shipments that do not arrive. In many lean manufacturing industries, there is little or no margin in the supply … Continue reading this entry

China's “RoHS 2” Regulation: What Manufacturers Must Know

After years of deliberation and industry anticipation, China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (“MIIT”) promulgated the “RoHS 2” regulation on January 21, 2016, with the formal (translated) title “Management Methods for the Restriction of the Use of Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Products.” See our English reference translation of RoHS 2 here.… Continue reading this entry

Top Counterfeiting Risks Manufacturers Face in 2016

Ten Tips to Develop a Practical Conflict Minerals Approach for 2014
The global market for all counterfeit items is booming, with the value of goods seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection in fiscal year 2014 exceeding $1.2 billion. Moreover, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security reported that the number and value of seizures of counterfeit automotive parts increased by 83 percent and 66 percent, respectively, … Continue reading this entry

Happy Thanksgiving from the Manufacturing Industry Advisor Team

During this week of Thanksgiving, the Manufacturing Industry Advisor team wishes to thank all of you for reading, contributing to, and sharing our blog. Since this is a busy time of year for everyone, some of you might have missed a post or two over the last few weeks. For your convenience, linked below are some of our most recent and popular posts. … Continue reading this entry

Looking Back and Looking Forward on Manufacturing Day

Happy Manufacturing Day! On the first Friday of October, we celebrate advances in modern manufacturing while inspiring future generations of manufacturers. Click here to find an MFG event near you.… Continue reading this entry

Business Interruption Insurance: Why You Need It and How You Can Maximize Your Coverage

In his recent blog post on disaster planning for businesses, Foley associate Nicholas E. Williams noted: “Business interruption insurance, which covers the loss of income suffered by a business after a disaster, plays an important part in disaster planning.” In fact, it can be as important to a manufacturer’s survival as fire insurance. While most … Continue reading this entry

Legal Considerations in Businesses’ Disaster Planning

In the last decade, Disaster Recovery (“DR”) and Business Continuity Planning (“BCP”) have become “hot” topics, as companies attempt to deal with disasters and the associated business risks. “Force majeure” is a legal concept that excuses a party’s performance under a contract on account of wide-scale, unpredictable, and devastating events, such as hurricanes, wars, national … Continue reading this entry

Monitor Financial Distress in Your Supply Chain

SupplyChainManagement
While American manufacturing has experienced a resurgence in recent years, some manufacturers continue to face challenges. Witness for example the recent chapter 11 filings of Colt, Boomerang Tube, and Everyware Global. Sometimes, manufacturers struggle because a supply chain partner—a major supplier or customer—is struggling. In order to manage supply chain contracts, manufacturers need to watch … Continue reading this entry

Closing a Facility? Dig Deep to Avoid Contractual Issues

When closing a facility, the legal issues that most often come to mind are terminating a lease or selling the asset(s). However, those are just the tip of the iceberg. From below the surface, potential problems may arise out of contracts seemingly outside the facility closure’s scope. Regardless of the reason, myriad legal considerations accompany … Continue reading this entry

Are You a Government Subcontractor?

Ten Tips to Develop a Practical Conflict Minerals Approach for 2014
Just because your company does not contract directly with the government does not necessarily mean you are not subject to the many requirements associated with government contractors. Those who provide goods and services to OEMs, or other customers who sell to the government, may also be subject to those requirements. Many government contractors incorporate by … Continue reading this entry