The Friday Report: September 20th, 2019

Quick wrap up of a few hot topic newsworthy stories in the supply chain logistics industry

Will Brexit Cost the British Fashion Industry $1 Billion?

If the UK is unable to come to terms to exit the EU amenably, the split may end up costing the British fashion industry dearly, around $1.1 billion.  The cost is partially due to tariffs, but other expenses could drive up the cost even higher.  According to the British Fashion Council, a U.K. switch to the rules followed by the World Trade Organization would mean stricter controls on international shipping, a move that would greatly constrain the industry.  Out of concern for the impact on the fashion industry in the U.K. which contributed nearly 32 billion pounds annually to that economy, the British Fashion Council has requested stimulus funding to help ensure that the industry remains competitive on an international basis.

Is China Currently Winning the Race for the Electric Car?

In the transition to battery powered cars, one of the major problems is that of waste and need for even more raw materials.  If 140 million electric vehicles are on the road by 2030, car manufacturers will need 3 million tons more copper annually as well as 1.3 million tons of nickel and 263,000 tons more cobalt.  The increased need for cobalt would dramatically outstrip the total amount of current mined production, which stood at 150,000 tons in 2018.  The need to recycle will be inevitable and China has already positioned itself as an industry leader.

The Chinese have found recycling vehicle batteries to be profitable due to the value of the raw materials, making it competitive with western countries.  South Korea and China view the issue from an alternative perspective, one that necessitates viewing how to supply the production of battery materials via recycling.  The cost of battery recycling needs to be incorporated into the selling price of the vehicles to make the investment needed make sense.

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Shopify Gets into the Robotics Business by Acquiring Startup 6 River Systems

By acquiring warehouse fulfillment solutions vendor 6 River Systems, Shopify will gain a foothold in the warehousing solutions market, potentially enhancing its market position against Amazon.  EBay also plans to launch a fulfillment service in 2020.

Supply chain services are becoming more popular for marketplaces and e-commerce platforms and can provide a competitive advantage.  One objective in Shopify acquiring 6RS is to help ensure that its shippers do not need to move from Shopify to a larger platform as their businesses and sales grow.  Providing the necessary technology in the same platform is seen as a potential game changer.

For more information, please continue reading here.

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