GM says it will seek compensation over the Venezuelan government's seizure of company assets last week, but compensation for the losses will be difficult. The government seized a General Motors factory, cars and other assets as anti-government protesters clashed with authorities.
The auto-parts market is not as vulnerable to digital disruption as some analysts believe, argues Zain Akbari. The aftermarket auto-parts customer is not swayed by price alone and has needs that extend beyond Amazon's service offerings, Akbari argues, which should help such companies as O'Reilly Automotive, Genuine Parts and Advance Auto Parts with individual and commercial customers.
Grainger is expediting pricing changes as part of its broader strategy, which is helping sales in the near term while hurting margin. "It's not an easy one to execute, but this is absolutely the right thing to do," CEO D.G. Macpherson said.
Genuine Parts posted a 5% sales increase in the first quarter and a profit increase of 1.4%. Subsidiaries Motion Industries and EIS reported sales growth of 6.9% and 4.8%, respectively.
Distributors looking to expand their business need to assess whether adding more branches or acquiring existing firms is worth the economic risk, Bridget McCrea writes. Expert Linda Henman recommends electrical distributors act boldly, strategically use excess cash, and assess competitors' footprints before choosing an expansion path.
Women in manufacturing are looking for mentorship, flexible work, good pay and work assignments, among other wants, according to a study from the Manufacturing Institute, Deloitte and APICS.
Collaborating with other companies and specialties can give businesses access to experts and potential business partners, Patrick Gorman writes. Pharmaceutical and biotechnology firms are among those reaching beyond their walls for expertise.
A culture of quality control in smart manufacturing can be made easier with an automated software system and the ability to trace components, writes Mark Humphlett of Infor. "A sound quality control program will not only protect your brand and investment, but will help to bolster relationships with customers," he writes.
When companies understand the customer demand windows for their products, they can adjust sales and marketing approaches for existing offerings and use this new knowledge to design new products and services, write Emre Sucu, Matt Egol and Edward Landry.
- Page 1