As a diversified service provider and one of the largest Hispanic-owned businesses in the United States, Group O is the Swiss army knife of business process outsourcing suppliers. It provides business-to-business marketing, packaging and business analytics services, as well as supply chain management.

Headquartered in the Quad Cities region of Illinois and Iowa, Group O is one of a handful of Corporate Plus members of the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC). That distinction means that the company has been certified to have the capacity and expertise to handle enterprise-scale programs for large corporate clients.

Group O’s results bear that out: In the past decade, the company has earned top-supplier awards from a number of leading organizations, including a 2012 Supplier of the Year honor from Miller-

Coors. Group O has also been recognized as a top-5 Latino-owned business by the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and as NMSDC’s National Minority Supplier of the Year in 2011.

The road from CVS to CVS Caremark has been a carefully planned one. When Senior Vice President of Logistics Ron Link joined CVS 20 years ago, the company had a regional focus with 1,200 drugstore locations in the Northeast. Today, and after the 2007 merger of CVS and Caremark, the company has evolved into an integrated pharmacy company whose retail division has more than 7,600 stores serviced by 18 distribution centers throughout the United States. Grounded in its purpose to help people on their path to better health, CVS Caremark’s enterprise channels include  its pharmacy benefits management, mail order and specialty pharmacy division, CVS Caremark Pharmacy Services; CVS/pharmacy retail stores; and its retail medical clinic subsidiary, MinuteClinic. 

“When I joined CVS we were a pure retailer, and now we have evolved into a healthcare company with unique integrated assets combining retail pharmacy, PBM and retail medical clinics,” Link says. “It was a strategic path that has led to our becoming a pharmacy innovation company that is reinventing pharmacy to help people on their path to better health.” 

Transforming the retail energy sector is what Crius Energy is all about. The young company has built a strong portfolio of energy brands, and it is now striving to be an innovative energy partner for its customers and markets.

Based out of Stamford, Conn., Crius Energy operates in the retail energy and services sector. The company formed in 2012 when Regional Energy Holdings and Public Power merged. Public Power was founded in 2008, serving electricity and gas customers in the Northeast. Regional Energy Holdings started in 2009, forming a diverse portfolio in the retail energy space.

“The retail energy industry is somewhat unique and fairly young,” COO Chaitu Parikh says. “When we merged, we also did a simultaneous IPO.” 

When medical device suppliers and manufacturers maintain their own distribution centers and vehicle fleets, these assets are not always used to their fullest. The distribution center might have areas that are vacant, or the trucks might be delivering less than truckloads (LTLs). That unused capacity adds costs to the healthcare system.

Cardinal Health Integrated Logistics Services (ILS) was set up as a separate business unit by Cardinal Health Inc. in 2011 to eliminate those costs by acting as a third-party logistics (3PL) provider. Instead of maintaining their own warehouses and trucking fleets – or paying high prices for shipping LTLs with trucking companies – medical device suppliers and manufacturers can reduce their shipping and warehousing expenses by using the 3PL services of Cardinal Health Integrated Logistics Services.

Cardinal Health Inc. provides pharmaceuticals and medical products and services to more than 100,000 locations each day, and also is a direct-to-home medical supplies distributor. Additionally, the company manufactures medical and surgical products, including gloves, surgical apparel and fluid management products. It also operates the nation’s largest network of pharmacies that dispense radioactive pharmaceuticals to aid in the early diagnosis and treatment of disease.

The March 11, 2010, earthquake and tsunami in Japan lasted less than 10 minutes, but its impact was felt for months, if not years, afterward. One of the disaster’s most widely reported aftereffects was the meltdown of three of the six nuclear reactors at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, which resulted in a mass evacuation and cleanup effort.

 CANBERRA, a leading manufacturer of radiation detectors and nuclear measurement equipment, was front and center during most of these efforts. “We’re proud of our response to that incident and the role we had in safeguarding the people of Japan,” says Joseph Nuzzi, executive director, global supply chain, CANBERRA. The company is a subsidiary of AREVA, a multibillion dollar publicly traded power generation solutions company based in France. 

Manufacturers’ responsibilities today extend far beyond simple product production. With supply chain globalization and continued business growth evolving in the industry, it is critical that manufacturers have a comprehensive view into the entire chain to reliably track each product all the way to its final end-point. Furthermore, to ensure a competitive edge into the future, manufacturers must move beyond the scope of the supply chain as it is now, identify forthcoming trends and obstacles, and understand their roCurrently, global trade regulations require manufacturers to understand country-specific rules and regulations that include ensuring products have appropriate licenses, and paperwork filed with the appropriate governments agencies. Automated and integrated trade solutions provide a seamless method for tracking product lifecycles as products are shipped to different locations and also demonstrating a comprehensive history of the product at each moment throughout the chain. Having the technology to track the product closely and without time lapses allows manufacturers to see a product’s journey in its entirety from product production to customer delivery, which is essential for compliance.

Today, many distribution centers rely on outdated methods to capture data and monitor operations. In many cases, pencils, clipboards and punch cards are still the tools of the trade, as operators are required to record and input information manually. In today’s competitive environment, these antiquated methods are no longer sufficient to keep track of the supply chain and operate an efficient distribution center. With modern wireless technology, it’s possible for operators to maintain complete end-to-end awareness of the supply chain, and use automation to increase efficiency and reduce costs.

The modern supply chain environment is changing rapidly: Shorter lead times. Faster turnaround and response times. More SKUs. Cheaper component sourcing and more effective procurement. Reduced environmental impact from extensive transportation. More regulation and compliance. Perpetual cost management and expense reduction.


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