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Top 10 Supply Chains of 2015

June 8, 2015
Gartner Inc. unveils its 11th annual breakdown of the world's best supply chains.

Gartner Inc. unveils its 11th annual breakdown of the world's best supply chains.

Gartner Inc. has just unveiled its ranking the world's best top supply chains.

Built from a poll of its own analysts and a peer group of over 200 supply chain experts, this ongoing research project has become the industry standard in ranking the manufacturing, retail, and distribution companies operating the most efficient supply chains in the world.

Not every company in the world is considered for this list, however.

As Dave Blanchard – a member of the peer group polled for the list – writes on IndustryWeek, "Gartner does not include energy company, or oil & gas, or mining, or metals, or shipbuilders, or entertainment, or IT, or logistics companies or transportation companies, or utilities. And Gartner also has some weird biases against certain companies and how exactly they make their money."

For that reason – and a few other notable peculiarities – we don't the usual giants like IBM, Disney, UPS or FedEx on the list. In that sense, this isn't so much a ranking of the Top 10 Supply Chains in the world as it is deep look at the public manufacturers and retailers "who are really good at supply chain management," Blanchard notes.

Even still, the list identifies some clear winners in the field, each of them with something to teach their competitors.

10. Nike

"Although footwear company Nike relies on offshore manufacturers to produce its shoes and other apparel products, the company has pushed hard to get most of those producers to adopt lean manufacturing processes. In addition to driving waste out of its production and supply chain operations, Nike is also heavily engaged in sustainability projects, such as using recycled CO2 and zero water in a new dyeing process that formerly relied on water-based methods."

9. Colgate-Palmolive

"Integrated business planning is a key area of concentration for consumer goods producer Colgate-Palmolive. As Gartner’s analysts explain, the company is aiming for transparency throughout its supply chain, and to that end Colgate-Palmolive is using collaboration tools, what-if simulations and real-time analytics while involving key supply chain partners in the process."

8. Samsung Electronics

"Samsung’s supply chain efforts of late have been focused on end-to-end visibility and on collaborative planning, forecasting and replenishment (CPFR) with mobile suppliers, Gartner’s analysts note. The company is also focusing on continuous improvement in customer logistics."

7. H&M

"H&M is now focusing on reinventing how it captures demand and fulfills orders across all channels, as the company has fully embraced omni-channel distribution via its recent expansion into e-commerce."

6. Cisco Systems

"Cisco is also tapping Internet of Things capabilities to improve its supply chain operations while also developing and marketing new IoT solutions."

5. Inditex

"The company is known best for its Zara stores and its 'fast fashion' business model, whereby a new product can be designed and brought to market within one week, a vast shortening of the typical six-month time-to-market lifecycle for the industry."

4. Intel

"Targeting such verticals as transportation, smart buildings and industrial manufacturing. Intel’s supply chain includes more than 16,000 suppliers spread across 100 countries, and the company is heavily involved in reducing the environmental impact of its entire supply chain. In particular, Intel is committed to eliminating the use of conflict minerals in the production of its solutions."

3. Unilever

"By working closely with its global suppliers, the company has already achieved its goal of sending zero waste to landfill across its global factory network. Unilever has also reached 1 million tons of CO2 savings since 2008, which has resulted in savings of $267 million worldwide."

2. McDonald's

"When it comes to inventory turns, no other company on the Gartner Top 25 list comes even remotely close to Mickey D’s proficiency, as the company’s rate of 157.3 is nearly 10 times that of its next-closest pursuer, Samsung, which came in at 17.7."

1. Amazon

"Whether it’s same-day delivery, online groceries, instant ordering 'Dash' buttons, delivery drones, or even the recent announcement of delivery to customer’s car trunks, Amazon pushes the supply chain envelope like no other company."



See the full breakdown of this year's Top 25 Supply Chains on IndustryWeek.

IndustryWeek is an NED companion site within Penton's Manufacturing & Supply Chain Group.