Emerald Kalama Chemical web photo 3

Emerald Kalama Chemical combined 13 independent supply chains into one global operation.

By Tim O’Connor

Implementing a fundamental change for a company always comes with some skepticism – even more so when the shift impacts global operations. So when Emerald Kalama Chemical decided it wanted to implement a global supply chain operation that would better serve its worldwide customer base, the company knew it had to get out ahead of its messaging to create buy-in.

“You have to be able to communicate the change and why you are doing the change,” explains Claudia Knowlton-Chike, senior vice president of global supply chain.

Knowlton-Chike, with the backing of CEO Edward Gotch, communicated upfront the value having a truly global supply chain would create for the chemical manufacturer. In other situations, a person whose role was shifting from a local scope to a global one might put up resistance. The unknowns that come with change are a reason for hesitation.

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Monogram Foods plans to continue its growth by not only implementing new technology but also by fostering its customer and employee relationships.

By Bianca Herron

Monogram Foods is a family, and a growing one at that, according to Chief Procurement Officer Jeff Modica. Founded in 2004, Monogram Foods is a manufacturer of value-added meats, frozen comfort foods and appetizers. The Memphis, Tenn.-based company operates eight plants across the country in Tennessee, Indiana, Virginia, Minnesota, Texas, Iowa, Wisconsin and Massachusetts.

 “Our products include beef jerky, meat snacks, frozen appetizers, sandwiches, corn dogs, pre-cooked bacon, smoked sausage and pet treats,” Modica says. “Our annual average compound revenue growth has been over 40 percent for the last five years. Our growth has come organically, and a lot has been from acquisitions. From the acquisition standpoint, last year we acquired a company in Boston called Progressive Gourmet, which brought with it another set of suppliers and service providers.”

CTS Corp web photo

CTS Corp. revitalizes its operations to become more efficient and innovative as it supplies components that sense, move and connect in critical applications.

By Janice Hoppe-Spiers

CTS Corp., a leading designer and manufacturer of sensors, actuators and electronic components, is a partner and smart solutions provider to original equipment manufacturers. The company is in the process of revitalizing and modernizing its operations while remaining a trusted source for many industries in a digitally connected world.

“The company was founded in 1896, which means we are more than 120 years old and a company with very deep roots with a deep technical knowledge and expertise across multiple technologies and markets,” CEO Kieran O’Sullivan says. “Customers come to us and say, ‘We need a solution, can you design it for us?’ We make robust designs; our products simply work. Customers often come to our Ceramic operations because of our quality reputation of the material formulations we use.”

About 90 percent of CTS’s business is directly with OEMs in the aerospace, communications, defense, industrial, information technology, medical and transportation industries. “We are the supplier for products that sense, connect and move,” O’Sullivan says. “We have a fantastic array of products that have powerful impacts on our world and we are proud of that.”

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With a stronger focus on hydrocarbons and petrochemicals, recently rebranded Contanda hopes to create a new legacy in the liquid storage space

By Tim O’Connor

Companies have relied on Contanda’s reliable liquid storage solutions for more than 70 years. “We are part of our customers’ supply chain,” President and CEO Jerry Cardillo says. “We are the logistics optimizers. We are part of the value chain that makes them either more efficient or less efficient.”

Contanda is a critical link that holds together clients’ supply networks. The company provides custom-built storage tanks, filtration, in-tank blending, and import and export services, among others. Each solution is developed specifically for that customer to ensure it meets their operational needs. Whether it is developing a specific blending process or operating a terminal 24/7 so that trucks can deliver overnight when there is less congestion, Contanda prides itself on offering flexible services. “We’re customizing down to the terminal and the customer,” Cardillo says.

Even as it undergoes a rebranding and adjusts its capabilities to better serve the petrochemical market, Contanda promises not to lose sight of the customer services values that made it a leader in the liquid storage space.

Overhead door web photo

For more than 90 years, Overhead Door Corp. has provided its customers with a quality product, and unmatched customer service and expertise.  

C. G. Johnson founded Overhead Door Corp. in 1921 after he invented the upward-lifting garage door. Johnson traveled across the United States with a small prototype of the door mounted on the back of his Model T and promoted the new innovation in a several small towns and at county fairs. 

“He was ahead of his time by using marketing and sales tactics such as customer coupons and sales outlet bulletins to communicate the news about this innovative product and create a call-to-action for consumers,” the company says. Johnson established a network of distributors and soon his invention of the overhead door gained widespread popularity.

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Rolls-Royce values the entire career arc of its sourcing professionals.

By Tim O’Connor

After almost three decades of working in procurement, the biggest change Gordon Tytler has seen isn’t the technology or speed of delivery, but the professionalism of the people working behind the scenes to purchase and move products around the globe. “The people that we have and the quality of the people that we’ve got is phenomenal,” the director of procurement for Rolls-Royce says.

Procurement specialists today are more than buyers; they need to have a strong business sense and be able to guide a company’s decision-making.  “Procurement is very much a people- and knowledge-based organization,” Tytler says. “The tools allow us to operate more efficiently, more effectively and allow us to link with our suppliers. But, the key differentiator for successful procurement is its people.”

Tytler’s belief in the value of his employees is part of why Rolls-Royce invests heavily in training and recruitment. The company encourages its team members to join professional organizations such as the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport, the Institute of Supply Management and the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply.

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Briggs & Stratton achieves the best on-time fill rates because of its proactive, agile supply chain and a team that embeds itself in every part of the business.

By Janice Hoppe-Spiers

Tim Wild was introduced to Briggs & Stratton’s small gas engines at just 10 years old when he began mowing his family’s lawn. Today, he is the company’s vice president of global supply chain and confidently fulfills each order with products that are engineered to “last.”

“Right there on the top of the lawnmower was a Briggs & Stratton engine and that lawnmower engine still runs today,” Wild says. “We have the highest-quality products and we have the best on-time order fill percentage, which holds steady at or near 100 percent. Quality, innovation, broad product lines and supply chain agility is our secret sauce.”

Arctic Cat web photo 1

Arctic Cat repositioned its supply chain to better support its focus on new product development.

By Tim O’Connor

Arctic Cat’s business is partly dependent on conservation. If there are no grassy hills to jump over or snow-covered trails to sled, then there is no reason for outdoor enthusiasts to purchase its all-terrain vehicles or snowmobiles. Which is why the company is concentrating more on green procurement practices. Arctic Cat’s green procurement officers track government regulations and work with suppliers to implement more environmentally friendly practices.

Many larger suppliers already have green programs in place, but making the investment in environmental initiatives can be difficult for smaller companies that have less capital or fewer people to spearhead such efforts. “It’s more the medium and small suppliers we will help coach,” Director of Supply Chain Dave Dickirson says.

Arctic Cat values green procurement enough that it includes it on its supplier report cards and it is one of many factors that determine which vendors it buys from. If a supplier doesn’t have a green procurement program or lacks in other areas, such as automatic payments, Arctic Cat will consider alternative providers.

But Dickirson says the company wants to avoid those situations. “It is in some cases very difficult to change out a supplier,” he explains. “Our first course of action is to work with them in earnest to make sure they get the systems in place.”

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