Supply Chain Solutions

Andrea Fiano's letter to you, the reader.

VOL. 35  NO. 11

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The readers of this magazine do not need to be reminded of the importance of the supply chain in global trade, but in the last eighteen months many people who had never given much thought to it became more aware, and found themselves worrying about the pandemic’s impact on the availability of goods.

The goal of our cover story this month is to look forward at various scenarios for the global supply chain both through and beyond the current crisis, and provide some practical advice to corporate leaders. Most businesses are dealing with this issue at some level, trying to find new approaches to getting supplied. And yet the situation remains full of uncertainty.

Two recent examples at the top of New York markets show the different realities and solutions. Many suppliers from all over the world are involved in the residential conversion of iconic Art Deco office building One Wall Street into a luxury condominium of 566 apartments. When asked abourt supply problems, one of the architects of the Macklowe Properties project noted that overseas suppliers that could not provide components in time had to be replaced. “Quality and price can no longer be the only deciding factors in our choice,” she said. Availability is all, at the moment.

Getting supplied is not a problem at Lamborghini America, however. As a small but high-profit segment within the Volkswagen Group, they get what they need. “We are privileged,” says new CEO Andrea Baldi. “Our real limit is capacity production.” Still, he adds, logistics problems such as the shipping bottleneck have meant some delays of a few weeks in the delivery of new cars from Europe to America. It looks as though resolving our current global and local supply-chain difficulties will require custom-designed solutions—new configurations and approaches—at all levels.

Andrea Fiano | Editor