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2015 Consumer Goods Trends

As consumers, media, and markets splinter, packaged-goods companies must figure out how to profit from fragmentation. To read the full report click on link below;

http://www.strategyand.pwc.com/perspectives/2015-consumer-goods-trends

Digital Influence in UK Retail – The true value of digital in-store

Consumer ownership of and engagement with digital technology is growing, and the rate of growth is accelerating. The fact that consumers are leading increasingly digital lives has an impact on how they consume products and services and the way that they interact with retailers and brands.

To assess the changing dynamic between the consumer and retailer, and both the physical and digital worlds, Deloitte conducted a study to find out how consumers currently use digital devices at different stages of the shopping journey.

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The Deloitte Consumer Tracker: Q1 2015 – A Spring in their step?

Higher disposable income drives confidence up

The level of confidence about household income is at its highest in over three years and is getting closer to positive territory. Supported by a recovery in spending power and further falls in unemployment, consumers’ finances are starting to normalise. Such an improvement points to an acceleration in consumer activity and suggests that 2015 may well be the best year for consumer expenditure since 2005.

An improvement in disposable income has been the main driver of the recovery in our consumer confidence index. In Q1 2015 consumers’ confidence in their household level of disposable income rose by seven points compared to a year ago and is now 30 points higher than when the survey began in Q3 2011.

 

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KPMG Transport Tracker – March/April 2015

This fourth edition focuses on M&A activities in 2014 and Q1 of 2015, impact of falling oil prices and challenges faced by logistics companies due to record e-commerce peak season

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Transport and logistics companies should explore innovative finance solutions to ride out General Election jitters -CILT, Industry News, Supply Chain

With businesses facing an unprecedented level of political uncertainty surrounding the General Election in recent weeks, many firms reduced their investment activity as a result of falling order books.

However, the usual dip in sales around the time of the General Election should be no cause for concern. It is those businesses that act now to take advantage of the inevitable upturn post-election that will be rewarded in the long-term.

Unsettled by the uncertainty of potential legislation changes, some firms have opted to delay investment decisions until after the election is concluded meaning that an inevitable upturn will occur in the months after the election. Businesses have two options available to take advantage of the more favourable post-election conditions; either invest, or maintain their position.

John Atkinson, head of commercial business at Hitachi Capital Invoice Finance, said

‘Most businesses have little need to exercise caution. Any legislative changes that do occur as a result of the election will not come into force until next year at the earliest, which means by investing now they can take advantage of any potential change ahead.

‘After weeks of speculation surrounding the outcome of the election and numerous promises being made by each party, many firms seem to have adopted a ‘wait and see’ mentality. This suspension of financial investment is usually motivated by the fear of making important decisions. Businesses should consider using simple cash flow solutions to free up vital cash owed to them by current late or unpaid invoices.’

Reluctance to make financial commitments is likely to deplete contract opportunities and as a result, many SMEs are have experienced a slow-down in orders in recent weeks. In some cases, customers are delaying payments of invoices, adding pressure to the already stretched cash flow of small businesses.

John Atkinson added: ‘Many smaller businesses rely on invoices being paid on time to cover their operating costs. They do not have large cash reserves and therefore it is crucial for the business to fill the order pipeline. The uncertainty in the general election has caused some businesses to pay late or hold off on projects altogether until the new government has been appointed.

‘A lack of investment in skills, as well as a potential fall in stock levels and failure to invest in new capital, such as machinery, vehicles and property could reduce the ability of a firm to capitalise on the inevitable increase in business activity after the election.

‘Businesses affected by the recent political uncertainty could benefit from options such as invoice finance to cover overheads and maintain the company’s financial position during the slow-down. Invoice finance is often underestimated as an option to provide a boost to cash flow – allowing businesses to turn their unpaid invoices into available cash. Firms experiencing a dip in orders should take steps to gain the necessary funding required to ride out the storm.’

Cautious investment activity could prove short-sighted and may reduce the future competitiveness of a business. During the period of protracted debate post-election, transport and logistics companies must work to protect cash flow and preserve trading activity in the face of depleted order-books.

Transport in the Digital Age by Deloitte

Change is coming to transportation, whether we’re ready for it or not. You can see it in public sector investment in intelligent streets and digital railways, automakers’ focus on next-generation vehicles and smart mobility services, and in the widening recognition that the “information everywhere” world will utterly disrupt the transportation status quo.

The proportion of the global population living in urban areas continues to rise faster than capacity on roads, rail and other types of transport. This pressure on transport infrastructure is driving capital investment estimated at over a trillion dollars a year. However, you can’t always create capacity by pouring more concrete, and technology will play a crucial role in changing the way we travel.

The Digital Age has begun, and technology has brought us smart phones, real-time planning, open traffic data, and social customer service. For the first time, the passenger now has more information than the operator. This fundamental shift offers consumers real choice based on a picture of alternative routes, comparative pricing and current network status. As transport operators adapt and new entrants arrive, new business models will transform the use of user information, payments, integration and automation.

These changes will form five disruptive trends for transport and smart mobility services

 

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Innovation takes centre stage at record breaking Multimodal show – CILT, Industry News, Supply Chain

A 100% recyclable pallet, which slashed one customer’s C02e by 9,000 tonnes, bringing commercial savings of around £5 million over a year, was just one of the innovations showcased at last week’s Multimodal show.

The Alternative Pallet Company demonstrated its lightweight pallet, known as the Pallite and made from paper and glue, by lifting a one tonne load as part of the Multimodal Seminars, which included insight from 64 industry thought leaders over three days of workshops.

Multimodal 2015 was a record breaker for the eight-year-old show, with over 8500 supply chain decision makers visiting over 290 exhibitors, including the likes of DSV, DHL, IAG Cargo and DB Schenker at the Birmingham NEC from 28th to the 30th April

‘We are proud to have expanded and developed the show and to continue to provide a platform for our industry to grow business, meet, learn and network,’ said Robert Jervis, Director, Multimodal.

‘We are very pleased that so many people have already signed up to exhibit next year and we are already looking forward to welcoming even more logistics buyers in 2016.’

Hundreds of shippers, including Marks and Spencer, Jaguar Land Rover, and Boots, visited the show, and many took advantage of the Shipper’s Village, a private space for freight buyers to meet suppliers.

This year’s Multimodal Awards featured two new categories, Young Logistics Professional, won by Joanne Dolan, and Woman of the Year, won by Bethany Forvargue.

The Co-operative Food was recognized for its carbon-busting switch to rail with the Award for Environmental Contribution given in conjunction with the Freight Transport Association (FTA).

Malcolm Logistics won Exhibitor of the Year, whilst John Williams, CEO, Maritime Transport, was honoured as Personality of the Year.

‘We have been delighted with the positive feedback from the awards,’ said Jervis.

‘We will continue to innovate and grow the event for 2016.’

Britain’s Lesser Known “Export Epicentres” Revealed in Exclusive Research of 2,500 UK SMEs Highlighting UK Trade in Global Markets

LONDON, 20 April 2015 – Regional cities across the UK are bucking the trend when it comes to international trade as revealed in research released today by FedEx Express, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and the world’s largest express transportation company. According to the new UK Export Epicentres Report by FedEx Express, the majority of small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) across the country are doing business overseas, with Bradford leading the way with an 86% export rate. In cities including Leicester, Oxford and Leeds, over three quarters of SMEs are exceeding expectations by trading at higher levels than Britain’s larger cities of Manchester and London.

Exporting confidence within the capital has spread throughout the UK’s cities, with lesser known export epicentres now emerging to lead the race for international clients and custom. Bolstered by the powerful influence of “Brand Britain”, a large majority (79%) of SMEs view their regional locality as a positive factor in stimulating overseas growth and profitability. However, more than a third of those surveyed highlighted they require more support on a local level to achieve international expansion.

“Now is the time to encourage UK SMEs to embrace their regional identities when building global relationships,” says Trevor Hoyle, Vice President, Northern Europe Operations, FedEx Express.  “With over 30 years’ experience capitalising on market trends in the UK, we’ve seen first-hand the wealth of benefits available to a business even at the very start of their export journey. Our main aim is to give all Britain’s regions the support and guidance they need in order to help our customers compete on a global scale.”

The report showed there is no shortage in positive thinking about the UK’s exporting future. 94% of SMEs feel optimistic about the year ahead; with 8 in 10 believing their export sales will increase again over the same time period. With average annual export sales topping £1.9m in Portsmouth alone, strong growth is set to continue throughout the rest of 2015 and beyond.

“This research has unveiled some fascinating insights into how regional self-perception and business optimism can be linked,” Hoyle added. “Our Great British history is rich and full of industrial heritage, the promotion of which can go a long way in driving UK exports forward. Although challenges still remain for some companies in doing business abroad, they can be overcome by having access to the right support, expertise and network.”

Export Rates in 26 Key British cities : The highest exporting rates amongst UK SMEs who produce goods or services are;

Bradford    86%

Leeds, London, Manchester, Southampton    81%

Belfast    79%

Oxford    78%

Leicester, Birmingham    77%

Cambridge    76%

Bristol, Derby, Portsmouth, Plymouth    75%

Liverpool    73%

Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Norwich, Nottingham    72%

Milton Keynes    71%

Cardiff, Hull    70%

Glasgow, Sheffield    68%

Coventry    67%

Newcastle    66%

To download a copy of the FedEx Express UK Export Epicentres Report containing analysis and the full findings, please visit http://www.fedex.com/gb/small-business/epicentres-report.html

Annual Manufacturing Report 2015

This year’s survey of manufacturers attracted responses from all areas and activities, from automotive, aerospace and agribusiness to plastics, renewables and steel.

Confidence is higher than they have seen for a number of years. Levels of investment are up, as are vacancies. Companies are looking to the future with commitment to more plant, machinery and equipment, and are actively seeking the skills they need to take them forward.

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Manufacturing and Industrial M & A Predictions – Deloitte UK

In spring 2014, M&A experts in the manufacturing and industrials sector gave Deloitte their views on the economic environment. They shared their views on deal drivers, valuations and keys to successful deals. The companies they surveyed have a combined market cap of nearly £300bn.

 

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