Each of the 13 building material supply companies that make up US LBM Holdings LLC are given a great deal of flexibility when it comes to serving customers. These companies operate their own fleet and distribution centers while partnering with select suppliers based on customer brand preferences.
“We think allowing this flexibility drives creativity and innovation. It also gives us the opportunity to share best practices that work at one company and can be adopted by others,” EVP Supply Chain Randy Aardema says.
Formed in 2009 by LT Gibson with the acquisition of three professional builder supply companies, US LBM Holdings has become the fastest growing building material distribution company in the United States. The company currently consists of 13 business divisions with more than 70 locations serving 11 states in the Midwest, Northeast, Southeast, Mid-Atlantic, and Western United States. US LBM is actively adding acquisitions and new green field locations for current divisions.
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For the management, production and logistics experts at Madden, the sky is the limit.
Madden was founded by Joe Madden in 1957 as a printing company, President Sean Madden explains. Brothers Joe and John Madden transformed their printing into more than a commodity service with their unique and innovative ways to approach customers. “They spent a lot of time simplifying complex processes with lots of elements such as multipage books, binders, manuals and typesetting columns,” Sean Madden says. “They built solutions to integrate these processes and eliminate redundant steps. They applied these techniques for a variety of production needs, especially for high-output pages for training manuals.”
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Serving companies in the military, aerospace, medical and industrial sectors, IEC Electronics Corp. understands its products must be “absolutely, positively perfect and on-time,” according to its tagline. But this is no marketing gimmick; IEC is dedicated to delivering only the best electronic manufacturing services because it knows what’s on the line for its customers.
“The markets we deal in are high reliability, mission-critical or life-threatening,” Director of Supply Chain Tiger Biletnikoff explains. “We can’t afford to have anything other than the highest level of quality. Our tagline is how we run our business, day in and day out. There is no other way to run our business successfully.”
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HID Global has always been on the forefront of technology in its field. The company provides the industry’s most extensive portfolio of readers, cards, controllers and software to create, manage and use secure identities. HID Global’s open platform supports multiple credential technologies and offers the greatest degree of flexibility and choice in secure access control.
The company’s worldwide presence supports more than 100 countries and its skills in engineering and manufacturing made it an industry leader, but its supply chain operations were in need of a boost in scalability. Although the company has continued to grow, both organically and through acquisition, supply chain operations was feeling the impact of not keeping pace. For the past two years, HID Global has been focused on upgrading its supply chain.
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Based out of corporate headquarters in Houston and Dubai, Halliburton has been in operation for nearly a century. Founded in 1919, it is now one of the world’s largest providers of products and services to the global energy industry. With more than 80,000 employees and working in more than 80 countries, Halliburton serves the upstream oil and natural gas industry all the way from locating hydrocarbons to optimizing production through the life of the field.
Today, the company offers one of the deepest portfolios of products, services and integrated solutions for oil and gas exploration, development and production. Its business is structured to include 13 product service lines (PSLs), which oversee the company’s strategy, technology development, process development, people development and capital allocation. To ensure future success, Halliburton has worked to strengthen its position in the Eastern and Western Hemispheres with several major operating regions, and by adding to its manufacturing capacity, moving closer to key markets, and helping to reduce the costs of moving materials, products, tools and people.
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Appvion Inc. has innovation in its bloodline. Founded 1907, as the Appleton Coated Paper Company, the company has been on the leading edge of developing and applying paper coating technologies. By 1935 the company had become the largest manufacturer of specialty papers in the world. In the 1954, Appvion helped NCR Corporation introduce the first carbonless paper, a product that revolutionized the forms industry by eliminating the mess and bother of carbon interleaves. The company has sold more than 14 million tons of the product since it was introduced.
In the late 1960s Appvion again partnered with NCR to produce a specialty coated paper that uses heat rather than pressure, like in carbonless, to create on image. NASA was among the first users of this new thermal paper for its moon missions. Today Appvion is the largest North American producer of thermal paper products.
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When utility company Ameren launched a program to transform its supply chain into a world-class sourcing organization 10 years ago, the company had a vision of what the end-goal would look like: an optimized program that reduces cost starting from sourcing on the front-end to payment on the back-end. Ameren’s supply chain leaders say the organization is nearly there, but it’s been a journey that’s taken many steps in the process.
Ameren is the parent company of Ameren Illinois, Ameren Missouri and Ameren Transmission. Between the two states, Ameren employs 8,500 personnel and serves 2.4 million electric customers and more than 900,000 natural gas customers across a 64,000-square-mile area. In Missouri, where the company began, it is the largest electric power provider and its supply chain operates three major warehouses in the state, as well as smaller warehouses at some of its generation facilities.
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With TransCanada planning several new projects and expecting sustained growth over the next several years, a supply chain overhaul just makes sense.
“The reason for this is not in response to the growth of our business in the last five years,” explains Gary Salsman, director of strategic sourcing. “It is planning forward for the future into the next five to seven years. We have now designed our supply chain to be more sustainable for our capital growth.”
Previously, TransCanada’s supply chain was largely organized by individual teams for specific projects or operational areas. This was effective for each project, but less so across the entire organization.
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