Acme Distribution - Denver, Chicago, Harrisburg, Dallas

October 2009 Newsletter


October 2009 Newsletter
Recession Nearing End? 3PL Growth Portended Get It Right the First Time!

According to policy-makers at the Fed, the downturn appears to have hit bottom and that consumer spending, financial markets, and inventory-building by corporations all have continued to stabilize. 

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The Fed also announced that it would wrap up its program to buy $300 billion worth of Treasury Bonds by the end of October. The program was one of several tools invoked to drive down long-term interest rates and indirectly reduce the cost of home mortgages and corporate borrowing.

“In a way, it’s more of a thumbs-up than if they had said they were continuing the Treasury-buying,” said Edward McKelvey, an economist at Goldman Sachs. “They’re saying that things are going according to plan, and that the policy is ok.”

The government’s preliminary estimates show that the economy’s downturn slowed markedly in recent months, shrinking only 1 percent in the second quarter compared with 6.4 percent in the first.

The quarterly Transportation Intermediaries Association’s, TIA 3PL Market Report, focuses on 3PL industry trends and practices.  Data for the 3rd Quarter’s Report are based on “confidential feedback from 42 member companies of TIA,” who responded to a survey on a number of topics such as:

  • Number of shipments by mode,
  • Total billing,
  • Gross margins, and
  • Forecasts of near-term business volumes.

One notable finding was that average volume was up for the for the 2nd period, while average profit margins remained unchanged from the first quarter to the second quarter “at about 18 percent.”

Another encouraging sign was that 60 percent of respondents indicated their outlook for the future was positive, adding that they expect business from core customers to increase in the near future.

“While July was not a pretty month [for logistics market conditions], things have been getting better overall. We are seeing total dollars billed having increased, with shipping count stabilized and increasing. Our members are optimistic about what is happening going forward,” reported TIA President and CEO Robert A. Voltmann.

3PL’s are adjusting their cost structures to maintain profitability even through the worst of times.

Troubled or failed project initiatives may oftentimes be largely avoided by management’s following these seven guidelines:

  • Adequate project definition, including goals and planning;
  • Intelligible, measurable pre- and post-assessment of performance targets;
  • Enthusiastic employee buy-in from the outset;
  • Successfully vesting project manager and her team with the budget, time, and authority necessary;
  • Exact and appropriate levels of expectation set;
  • Sufficient attention and preparation invested in initial and on-going training; and finally,
  • Quick reaction to project problems by attentive willingness and ability on the part of the Project Manager.

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Message from ACME's CEO
China & The Global Economy

The world continues to shrink and every one of us is impacted in a host of different ways. Those of us in the distribution world recognize how much manufacturing takes place in China, and how much support it takes to complete the sales and distribution cycle throughout the world. Acme has been part of that process for decades and has successfully shifted to meet the changing needs of the world economy.

As part of that shift, we are pleased to announce our affiliation with several international and Asian based organizations specializing in supply chain support and manufacturing interface. These affiliations have been carefully selected to align with the values and focus that you have come to know and expect from Acme. Our primary goal is to offer you additional value add services whether it be in your offshore manufacturing or in the management of your supply chain on either side of the globe. We believe that our formidable experience and daily exposure to the international world of business makes us a great partner for you as you look to enhance and grow your organization.

While our focus on domestic operations will never waiver, we think it is important to become actively involved in the international marketplace so that we can represent and assist our present and future customers in a globally intelligent fashion. As always, we stand ready to participate in the growth of your organization and in strengthening our position in the marketplace.

Your feedback is very important to us. Please take a moment to contact any of your friends at Acme to share your thoughts. We'd love to help you explore the possibilities that might exist not only in our traditional North American markets, but in the vast number of markets beyond our shores.

Acme values your privacy and will never sell or share your contact information.