It goes without saying that you wouldn’t invite anyone into your home without trusting them, and David Weekley Homes knows the value of this principle from a supply chain perspective. The Houston-based homebuilder is the largest privately held builder and one of the most successful in the United States. It received the 2013 Builder of the Year Award, and its annual revenues exceed $1 billion. Vice President of Supply Chain Bill Justus says the company places a high value on measuring performance of its national trading partners and challenges everyone, including itself, to world-class levels. 

It seems the trend favoring American-made products doesn’t just apply to manufacturers of hard goods. There has been a resurgence of whiskey sales in the spirits market since 2009, coming after nearly 40 years of steady decline. According to the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS), whiskey once held a dominant position in America’s spirits market. In 1970, whiskey sales were nearly twice that of all other spirits combined. However, that number dropped steadily from 1975. In 2000, it was less than half. 

Just after the economic crash, the market started to come back. From 2009 to 2013, whiskey sales in the United States have grown nearly 7 percent, and they’ve grown internationally, as well. In places such as India, overall U.S. distilled spirits exports reached almost $4.3 million in 2013, up by 49 percent compared with 2012. U.S. whiskeys, primarily bourbon and Tennessee whiskey, represented the vast majority (97 percent) of the total.

There’s no getting around it – Waste Connections Inc. is a large operation and there are a lot of pieces to manage to keep it running smoothly. The company provides solid waste collection, transfer, disposal and recycling services to more than 1 million customers in 30 states. It mainly targets residential and commercial customers in secondary and suburban markets, but through its R360 Environmental Solutions subsidiary, it also is a leading provider of non-hazardous oilfield waste treatment, recovery and disposal services in several of the most active natural resource-producing areas in the United States. Additionally, Waste Connections offers intermodal services for the movement of solid waste and cargo containers in the Pacific Northwest. 

The global supply chain team at Vertellus Specialties Inc. welcomes exceptions. Because, as the team’s director, Hugh Mitchell, explains, exceptions are really just areas to improve. 

“When we’re looking at reports and dashboards, it helps us to zero in on exceptions, because exceptions equal opportunities for cost savings and reduced expenses,” Mitchell says. “Detailed analysis creates a focused objective leading to results. At any one time we have a number of projects going on, whether it’s a detailed distribution cost analysis, or recycled inventory improvement, [or] improving our shipping time.” 

Sears Holdings Corp.’s product delivery operations are unmatched when it comes to size, scale and omnichannel integration. The company, formed in 2005 after the merger of national retailers Sears, Roebuck and Co. with Kmart Holdings Corp., has long specialized in providing products of all sizes to its customers where and when they need them.  

“The ability to effectively deliver products not only into our retail network but into homes is a distinct advantage of our supply chain,” Chief Supply Chain Officer and Senior Vice President Bill Hutchinson says. Sears is a home appliance, tools, lawn and garden, apparel, consumer electronics and automotive repair and maintenance leader, known for its Craftsman, Kenmore and DieHard brands. 

Like a healthy tree, Roseburg has roots that run deep and branches that spread a great distance. For more than 75 years, Roseburg has been one of the biggest names in lumber and wood products, with the nation’s largest sawmill in terms of capacity and the broadest selection of green wood building products in the industry. Thanks to the steady growth the company has experienced since its founding in 1936, Roseburg has a footprint in the industry that spans more than 600,000 acres of sustainable forest and a national distribution network that supplies customers across the nation. 

ModCloth turns the fashion industry on its ear by emphasizing what the online consumer wants rather than what designers dictate. With its “Be the Buyer” virtual fashion buyer program, online customers vote for the products they would most like to see on the company’s website.

Its “Make the Cut” is a crowd-sourced design program in which more than 5,000 clothing designs have been submitted by consumers and six of them chosen to be produced and sold on its website. The “Style Gallery” shows customers what the outfits they select look like on “real” people, and “Fit for Me” invites customers to submit their measurements to see the top-rated products recommended by people of similar sizes.

Few structures are as complex as the plants to manufacture petrochemicals, process and specialty gases that Linde Engineering North America Inc. builds for its parent company, The Linde Group, and other companies. “We build mainly petrochemical and gas processing plants,” explains Simon Kassas, vice president of procurement for Linde Engineering North America. “We have our own technologies, such as for ethylene production. We have our own technicians. We build plants for Linde Gas and for third-party clients.

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