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The Global 5G RAN Market is Exhibiting Robust Growth Throughout the Anticipated Period

global market network cell 5G communications networks will have logistics and supply chain applications, allowing users to more efficiently process shipments of export cargo and shipments of import cargo in international trade. RAN

The Global 5G RAN Market is Exhibiting Robust Growth Throughout the Anticipated Period

The global demand for 5G RAN is expected to rise at a healthy CAGR of 28.7% during the years 2022 and 2032 to reach a net worth of US$ 34.2 billion in 2032.

5G RAN Market Cellular devices utilize radio waves in order to communicate. These devices convert the user’s voice and mobile data into digitalized signals sent as radio waves. Radio Access Networks (RANs) are implemented to ensure the proper functioning of cellular devices and connect them to networks or the Internet.

RANs utilize radio wave transceivers to connect the device to the cloud infrastructure. Most transceivers or base stations are in connection via fiber backhaul to the mobile core network. RANs provide radio communication access and assists coordinative network resources across all wireless devices.

Wireless devices connect to cellular networks via Long Term Evolution (LTE) or 5G New Radio (NR) connectivity. Silicon chips in the core networks and cellular mobile devices complement the functionalities of RAN.

RANs have evolved significantly over the past years as cellular networking technology reaches 5G. Today, 5G RAN technology has the ability to support Massive Multiple Input Multiple Output (Massive MIMO) technology, multi-band carrier aggregation, vast spectrum bandwidths, and more.

5G RAN: Market Dynamics

Infrastructure has always been the top priority of countries with regard to strategic investments. The telecom sector is rapidly growing with governments making huge investments in IT infrastructure. National governments and public organizations are making huge investments in the betterment of national telecom infrastructures. This trend is estimated to propel the adoption of 5G RAN across every regional market.

Strategic investments in the telecom sector help governments harness the potential to create employment and drive the economic growth of countries. Ongoing advancements in 5G technology have great potential to transform the telecommunication industry vertical and enhance the user experience for end-users.

Many enterprises operating in the telecommunication industry across the globe are focusing on upgrading their existing networking infrastructure to 5G networking infrastructure. This will help such telecom service providers offer services with high performance and high-speed connectivity.

Thus, huge investments targeted at upgrading national telecom infrastructure is the key factor estimated to boost the adoption of 5G RAN technology during the forecast period.

Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic Outbreak on 5G RAN Market

Rising infections across the globe are forcing national governments to declare nationwide lockdowns. These lockdowns are restricting the large-scale deployment of 5G technology on a global level. Deployment of 5G technology in key industry verticals, like Automotive, Transportation, and Logistics, was estimated to boost the adoption of 5G RAN solutions and services.

Lockdowns legislated by national governments to combat the spread of infections have restricted 5G deployment. Government and public sector and healthcare industry verticals are estimated to record a spike in adoption rates. However, the overall growth rate is estimated to carry on undeterred with consistent adoption of 4G LTE.

Regional overview

5G RAN markets in North America and Europe are leading all other regional markets on a global level. The strong market share may be attributed to the high presence of 5G technology solutions and service providers in the region.

Initiatives and investments deployed by government organizations are also propelling the adoption of 5G technology, thus driving the 5G RAN market. Advancements in 5G technology for automotive and smart transportation are playing a key role in propelling 5G RAN market growth in European economies like Germany and the U.K.

The 5G RAN market in the Southeast Asia Pacific region is projected to register a strong growth rate over the forecast period. 5G RAN markets in Latin America and the Middle East and Africa region will be slower to gain traction during the forecast period, as LTE Advanced technology is still gaining diffusion in those regional markets.

Competition Landscape

Some of the key vendors in the global 5G RAN market is Nokia; Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson; Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.; Verizon; ZTE Corporation; NEC Corporation; Cisco; Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.; SAMSUNG; Intel; and FUJITSU, among others.

The 5G RAN market report is a compilation of first-hand information, qualitative and quantitative assessments by industry analysts, and inputs from industry experts and industry participants across the value chain.

The report provides an in-depth analysis of parent market trends, macroeconomic indicators, and governing factors, along with market attractiveness as per segment. The market report also maps the qualitative impact of various market factors on market segments and geographies.

Retail Space For Lease: Tips to Make Your Property Stand Out

Retail Space For Lease: Tips to Make Your Property Stand Out

With tenants’ availability, you can never go wrong with commercial assets, as they can be highly profitable. Shopping centers and office spaces both depend on tenants to survive. But it is not surprising that many property managers and landlords struggle to find tenants for their office spaces. So that’s why there is a high demand for office space for lease on listing websites like Craiglist and Loopnet. Office space tenants and residential space tenants have distinct needs. 

This article will highlight why office rentals seem to be in such a slump and what tenants seek in a business lease. It will also give you some of the effective strategies you can leverage to make your property stand out. Let’s explore!

Reasons Why Office Spaces Struggle to Get Clients

  • The economy has caused businesses to be more frugal. With the economy’s uncertainties, most business owners have had to cut back on spending to save money. Instead of investing in an office space, most pump any extra coin into sales and marketing. 


  • Most people are embracing remote work. The Covid 19 pandemic affirmed to most businesses, schools, and other organizations that working from home is possible. Besides, employees and business owners can’t deny the vast benefits of working from home. For instance, they’ll not need to pay a dog sitter or pick up kids from school, as they can do that while still working. 


  • It’s not easy for business owners to get their staff to return to the office. Business owners have lost the negotiating power to persuade employees to return to the office during the hiring process. Today, employees have access to many jobs that don’t require them to go to the office. So they can always change jobs if they feel obligated to work on-site. 

So how can you ensure your small commercial space for rent stands out in the market? Here are some valuable strategies you can leverage to help rent out your office space to more people. 

1. Ensure the Location Is Irresistible

The location of your retail space for lease should be a priority to attract tenants. Most tenants struggle with the perfect location that’s suitable for their businesses. This is because they require a location that customers can access with a lot of ease. Because at the end of the day, they’re a business, and they’re looking to close more customers. 

So ensure your retail space for lease is in a more desirable location. But to maximize the area, you should also consider having well-planned interior spaces. Therefore, working with commercial space for rent experts is essential to help you pick the best location for your investment property. 

One of the critical factors you can leverage is to ensure there are available amenities that can help support your business. This will show potential tenants that renting your retail business is beneficial. 

Ensure your small commercial space for rent attracts businesses that complement each other. For instance, you could place a shoe store adjacent to a collection of clothes retailers. Also, consider transportation facilities so that they can cater to tenants who have clients from different states. You could also place a popcorn stand next to a movie theatre. 

Those, as mentioned earlier, are a few examples to give you an idea of attracting tenants. The potential tenant is more inclined to sign the lease once confident that they’ll be located in a prime area. 

2. Offer Reception Service Assistance

You need to ensure you offer benefits that work-from-home individuals will find irresistible. The offers should be something they can’t get on their own, or they could be costly for their businesses. This is an effective way to lure tenants into leasing your property. 

You can take advantage of the explosion of customer service assistance incentives. You can employ a full-time receptionist who can help to welcome your guests in the lobby and answer and transfer crucial calls on behalf of the tenants. 

Most tenants would leverage such services, as it would help them cut costs. Besides, depending on your budget, consider outsourcing virtual receptionist services instead of hiring a full-time receptionist. 

At the end of the day, you’re looking for a practical incentive to attract more tenants to your premises. Therefore, it doesn’t matter if they’re virtual or full-time. All they need to do is ease mundane business aspects for your tenants. 

3. Provide Security on Your Retail Space for Lease

Security is vital when it comes to retail spaces. Therefore, you will need to invest in various security measures to attract high-value tenants. 

For instance, you should invest in security cameras, biometric access, guards, etc. to boost the security of your premises. Doing this helps potential tenants feel more at ease and safe on your premises. 

Moreover, tenants who work around the clock will appreciate the heightened security measures of your retail space. Besides, this will come in handy for tenants in your office space who work during odd hours. Also, it will be a good idea to hire more security personnel to give confidence to your tenants about their security.

Additionally, ensure the property management company you use is proactive regarding addressing security issues. 

According to studies, shoplifting crimes are prevalent. It is one of the most visible aspects of crime, with an estimated 200 million occurrences per year. When broken down, that equates to a startling 550,000 incidents per day, or nearly 23,000 incidents per hour. Therefore, you or your property manager shouldn’t be lenient when dealing with security issues.  

4. Include Shared Amenities on Your Property

You can decide not to rent some areas of your business property. It is easier for you to convert such spaces into communal areas to add more value to your property. For instance, you could use the spaces for cafeterias, conference rooms, etc. 

If most of your tenants or potential tenants are parents, you can decide to convert the basement of your small commercial space into a daycare facility. And if you choose to offer on-site food, ensure the menu is diverse depending on your tenants. 

Also, coffee is a necessity for most people. So it can be an excellent addition to having a coffee shop on your premises. Remember, the idea here is to ensure your retail space for lease stands out from your competitors. Therefore, even a Keurig machine and an excellent selection of coffee and creamers will add a lovely touch to your retail space. You can also provide hot water for tea or hot cocoa. 

5. Install an On-site Gym in Your Small Commercial Space for Lease

Another intriguing incentive that you can leverage is offering a free on-site membership. This is a great way to motivate people to return to the office since most people are becoming more aware of the importance of staying active. 

You can install a simple workplace gym. The best way is to shop for affordable ways to convert, say, a 300-square-foot office into a gym. Besides, you don’t need to buy new equipment. You can invest in just a few types of workout machinery that have been used but are still in excellent condition. 

Go ahead if you can afford to convert a small area of your retail space into a gym. This is because most people want to be fit and can always use the gym after working hours before heading home. To them, it’s more about accomplishing their fitness goals without driving miles away in search of a gym. Make it so cheap that they won’t hesitate to accept the offer. 

6. Offer Building Wi-Fi and Printing Services

Hotels understand how valuable printing and copying are to their clients. As a small business space for rent owners, you can decide to offer printing and copying services to your tenants. 

This is a valuable incentive for businesses that don’t have a business printer at home or whose maintenance is expensive. 

Moreover, you can also provide Wi-Fi to your tenants, as this is one item business owners can’t live without. So ensure you offer your commercial tenants high-speed internet that can cater to their daily needs. Doing this will help attract them to your retail space. Everyone is looking to save money and maximize profits, so shouldering Wi-Fi fees is a valuable incentive.

Besides, the best option is to ensure you sign up for a business broadband connection. This is a preferred option as it offers customer service and support 24/7. Therefore, it will not inconvenience your tenants to wait until morning if the connection goes down in the middle of the night.  

Also, for security purposes, you can install a different Wi-Fi for guests. Your tenant’s Wi-Fi needs to be secure, as they’ll use it for work. Furthermore, having everyone access Wi-Fi may be detrimental to their business due to increased cyber-security concerns. Tenants would perceive you as thoughtful, and as a result, they would trust that your retail space has their best interests at heart. 

Final Thoughts

No landlord wants to have a single unit empty. It becomes more frustrating if most of your units are not moving. So as a small commercial space owner, you want to ensure your property doesn’t sit empty for an extended period. 

If you want to attract tenants to your retail space for lease, you need to ensure your property stands out. The above tips are ways to cut through the abundance of retail space available in the market. Your location, shared amenities, workspace gym, security, Wi-Fi, and printing services are some of the tips you can leverage. They may seem obvious, but these can be game changers for your property. So leverage the ones that you know will fetch tenants for your property.

shippers' inventory global trade

Declining Trade is Testing Shippers’ Patience, Pockets, and Commitment

As global trade declined during the second half of 2022, in response to severe economic headwinds in many countries and the continued effects of the Covid-129 pandemic, the GSF/MDS Transmodal Container Shipping Market Review reflected the impacts on the activity and fortunes of shippers of unitized goods in international trade.

The latest edition of the Container Shipping Market Quarterly Review published today, reports data from the third quarter of year – a time of marked increases in consumer and producer price inflation, historically large increases in interest rates by central banks and high levels of stock inventories in many importing countries. Global energy prices edged higher amid disruptions to supplies arising from the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

However, the impacts of widespread ‘lock-downs’ and stay-at-home orders in China to contain the spread of Covid-19 do not appear to have significantly affected export volumes according to its national trade statistics. 

Key highlights of the Review include:

  • Trade volumes of goods capable of being transported in containers continued the decline observed at the end of Quarter 2, but the drop in overall volumes was much less than that reported by the container shipping sector. This is attributed to commodities, such as coffee, scrap metal and plywood, that can also be carried in bulk or semi-bulk form, switching away from containerized movements where shipping rates remain relatively high.
  • Despite falling for a second quarter, carriers’ unit revenues (earnings per container moved) were still 2.8 times higher than pre-Covid rates whereas unit operating costs have only risen by a factor of 1.5 over the same period. Cost pressures have largely been higher charter rates and a slow rise in fuel costs that has since receded. Container shipping lines remain highly profitable despite a falling market.

Figure 4.1

  • Spot rates fell by a fifth during the period, leaving many shippers ‘burnt’ by their decisions to commit to long-term contacts earlier in the year and questioning the many sources in the industry who confidently predicted that disruptive congestion and capacity shortages would continue through 2022 and beyond.

Figure 3.1

  • Adding to shippers’ frustrations, service levels remained at historic lows, with the predictability of arrivals still at only 85 per cent, meaning 1 in 6 sailings arrived later than normally expected.


Figure 7.1

  • The modest improvements recorded in the number of scheduled port calls made, at 90 per cent, is a welcome positive that can be partly attributed to the rising number of sailings that were ‘blanked’ during the period and didn’t sail at all, so easing the pressure on intermediate ports. Many of these saw an improvement in the proportion of expected capacity actually calling at the port s monitored but the proportion of lost capacity is still at historically high levels.


Figure 7.2

Mike Garratt, Chair of MDS Transmodal said:

“In quarter 3 2022 we saw the mean rates charged by the major lines continuing to suppress the proportion of container traffic they carried while the role played by new entrants was small. During quarter 3 we have seen several of these recent entrants leave the market as spot rates have fallen sharply, while leaving mean rates paid much higher. With a combination of stagnant demand and few ships now being delayed by port congestion, one would expect competition for shippers’ business to lead to a recovery of the share of the overall cargo market carried by container.”

James Hookham, Director of Global Shippers Council, commented:

“The quarter saw the downturn in volumes recorded at the end of Quarter 2 turn into a sustained decline – conditions that have not been seen in the container shipping market for over ten years. Many shippers are experiencing the behavior of the market under such conditions for the first time.

“Blanked sailings, slow steaming and other capacity management measures will add to the catalogue of frustrations accumulated over the previous 30 months of record high rates and poor levels of service”.

“The widening gap between spot rates and contact prices agreed six months prior to these data will anger shippers further and demands a flexible and immediate response by carriers if their dream of securing a majority of their business on contract ted terms is to be achieved.”

“The big question going into 2023 will be how much of their diminished volumes will shippers commit to renegotiated contracts and how much will they reserve for the spot market, which is expected to fall to below pre-Covid levels in the next few weeks?”

“Countering this trend will be efforts to manage capacity through ‘blanked sailings’ However, the extent to which spot rates are being supported by this permitted co-ordination between consortia partners is playing out just as competition authorities in Europe and North America are evaluating existing anti-trust measures and considering possible options for the future”.


China logistics still Struggling with COVID

So far, the implications for ports and airports appear not to be too serious, although why this is the case in not clear, as many major cities and regions are in some form of emergency measures. Ominously, the city of Shenzhen has issued a “work from home” order despite the wider region appearing to relax measures in the face of public disturbances.

Chinese state media reports that the neighboring port of Guangzhou, “has seen a limited impact on logistics and trade so far thanks to the local government’s launch of dynamic epidemic control measures to bring down the possible impact of the outbreak and quick reining of the virus.”

Ports further up the coast also seem to be unaffected. For example, the city of Dalian relaxed measures at the end of last week.

However, the city of Shanghai, which is the location for China’s largest container port, has just embarked on a further round of restrictions, with mass testing, business closures and movement restrictions. In the past such measures have led to serious disruption at both ports and airports, with truck-traffic in particular unable to drive through the city.

Similar measures are reported to be being applied in Chengdu and Wuhan, with both production and logistics activities being disrupted. Wuhan is a significant river port on the Yangtse and a key feeder location for Shanghai. Last week saw unrest in Zhengzhou in response to the imposition of new measures, with the most high-profile disturbances at the large Foxconn production and logistics hub in the city.

The situation is all the more febrile due to the political implications. The central Chinese government has attempted to articulate a change in policy over COVID measures, emphasizing a shift away from sweeping quarantine policies. However, it does not seem that these new policies are being applied on the ground. There has been extensive public unrest in reaction to these measures.

Judging by the little emerging from China, it seems that much of the regional and national government is keen to keep production and logistics operations continuing. However, it is unclear how successful they will be in the face of other parts of the state that seem wedded to a more extreme response.

The immediate implications for air and sea freight do not yet seem to be at the level of seriousness seen in 2021, when a number of major ports in regions such as the Pearl River Delta and Shanghai reduced operations to a minimum. What the present situation implies is that sea and air freight will recover at a slower rate than had been assumed. In particular it would appear that markets such as aircraft belly freight will remain short of volume.

goods SAAFF future-proof supply chain carl impact operations work overhaul global peak

Industries at Crossroads: The State of Operations 2022 – Supply Chain Drain 

Rising demand, dwindling workforces, and unforeseen delays made for a difficult and frustrating peak season in 2021, where many companies struggled to meet their goals. With the next peak season starting in just a few months, let’s take a look at key statistics and the observations of supply chain and operations professionals for some important lessons to take into the coming rush.   

 The COVID Curve 

Almost three years later and COVID-19 remains the usual suspect behind most challenges to businesses worldwide, including many of the chain disruptions and worker shortages that held operations companies back. The pandemic has a steep learning curve: 4 in 5 companies described themselves as more prepared in 2021 than in 2020, yet that year 80% of companies met their production and fulfillment goals while only 65% met those goals in 2021.  

As COVID transitions from pandemic to endemic, companies must continue to account for the virus as a major economic factor and continue to adjust to its challenges. In the coming year, businesses should be more proactive about preparing for COVID-based disruptions, perhaps by switching from a headcount-based to a milestone-based staffing model, or preparing for social distancing, mask-wearing, and hand sanitizing to ramp up again when facilities become more crowded for the peak season.   

 Hiring Hold-Ups 

66% of operations businesses could not fully staff the busiest days of the season in 2021, so recruiters must step up their game in in 2022. 40% of workers reported high stress, low pay, and dissatisfaction with working conditions were both top problems.  

The need for better conditions and incentives for workers has never been more apparent, and employers can better reach for their milestones in 2022 by improving company culture and offering leading pay rates and benefits. The best conditions will attract the best talent, raising the overall level of performance and allowing businesses to rely on fewer but better employees to keep operations less crowded and more resilient to absenteeism. 

 Supply Chain Drain 

Nearly half of employers listed the supply chain as a major hindrance during the 2021 peak season. Unpredictable shipments brought worker overtime up 25%. 41% of workers could not keep up with demand, and employers faced more customer and employee complaints as the season wore on.   

While alternate suppliers may not be ideal in terms of cost or efficiency, the supply chain crisis shows no sign of easing up. To prevent worker burnout and fulfillment slowdowns during the upcoming peak season, it may be necessary to forge relationships with reliable alternate suppliers, to plan orders further ahead, or even make redundant orders in some cases.  

Increasing Automation 

Automation helped the operations industry survive the 2021 peak season, reducing workloads, streamlining procedures, and alleviating stress. 43% of businesses used automation in various forms, and 46% plan to use more moving forward, to mitigate the hiring crisis and streamline everything from tracking applicants to interviewing prospects and onboarding new hires. 

 Computerized platforms can handle paperwork automatically, helping busy leaders focus on coordinating work. Timekeeping, scheduling, performance tracking, and more can all become trivial for companies that embrace automation, so long as they do so strategically.  

Companies looking to embrace automation more comprehensively in 2022 should have a clear and actionable plan for how to do so without disrupting operations. Mechanized systems introduced haphazardly could slow productivity before it ramps up.  

 Future Imperfect 

The 2021 peak season was not all bad, and we can certainly learn from the experience. More companies are planning further in advance: 83% in 2021, up from 77% in 2020. Planning cannot completely nullify worldwide difficulties, but can mitigate issues in future seasons.  

 To deal with labor shortages, leaders should perform more extensive job training as well as cross-training to encourage upward mobility and flexibility for employees. When the next peak season rolls around, employers should work with staffing agencies while pursuing regular year-round recruitment. Increased pay, sign-on bonuses, and further benefits will improve hiring, retention, and job performance.  

Staying Ready 

Today, 1 in 3 operations companies consider peak-season to be effectively year-round. Thus it is never too early to start planning, and always wise to expect the unexpected. Likewise, there is no shame in seeking out good partners, particularly staffing firms and primary and backup suppliers. Further investment in automation will help deal with rising demand and diminishing workforces. We can be sure that conditions will not return to the old status quo anytime soon, so as the official 2022 peak season comes on fast, successful companies will be those that know how to hire and retain staff, and to roll with whatever punches each peak season provides. 

Author’s Bio

Carl Schweihs is President and Chief Operating Officer of PeopleManagement, TrueBlue’s workforce management division specializing in onsite and contingent workforces. He leads three staffing businesses — Centerline Drivers, SIMOS Solutions and Staff Management | SMX — combining innovative, technology-based solutions with workforce strategy to help bridge talent gaps and prepare tomorrow’s supply chain talent for the future. 




How to Build Strong Supply Chain Relationships Amid Economic Uncertainty

While supply chains were already facing dire circumstances at the end of last year, 2022 has hit manufacturers and distributors with a new list of crises and disruptions. The war in Ukraine has snarled already-stressed supply chains, fuel costs are surging, shipping has become more expensive and less reliable, and the price of raw materials has spiked. Meanwhile, companies are dealing with extremely high labor costs, the ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, and increasing consumer demands.

These challenges are daunting, but there are many ways for manufacturers and distributors to mitigate risk and maintain their operations amid economic volatility. For example, supply chain partners should focus on alignment across core functions – from delivery schedules to order volumes. This will minimize the risk of disruptions while allowing companies to implement pricing strategies that will be more predictable and less frustrating for consumers. Rebates are crucial for maintaining alignment because they allow partners to negotiate orders on the basis of market realities and make corrections when discrepancies arise.

A multi-dimensional supply chain crisis

We’re in the middle of a massive global supply chain crunch that shows no sign of abating anytime soon. This crisis has made it difficult for companies to secure goods, driven up the cost of those goods (and the materials necessary to produce them), reduced access to working capital, strained relationships across the supply chain, and caused consumer frustration with inventory issues, delayed delivery times, and so on.

According to a May 2022 Accenture report, estimated economic losses attributable to supply chain disruptions have exceeded €112 billion (0.9 percent of GDP) in the eurozone – a total that could increase to €920 billion (7.7 percent of GDP) in 2023. Many of the problems in the supply chain sector are self-perpetuating. For example, soaring inflation drives up the cost of raw materials, which forces companies to increase prices and slow down production. This affects demand for those materials, which pushes their prices even higher. The latest Consumer Price Index report showed a year-over-year increase of 8.6 percent – the fastest rise since 1981.

At the beginning of the year, there was talk of stabilization in global supply chains – a discussion that will now be on hold well into 2023. This means suppliers and distributors will be dealing with continued geopolitical friction with unpredictable price fluctuations, shipping delays, and many other issues for the foreseeable future. They have to figure out how to navigate this shifting economic terrain to minimize their financial risk and maintain customer trust.

This is all the more reason for manufacturers and distributors to improve their relationships with a robust rebate management platform, mutually beneficial pricing strategy, and solutions that provide the best possible experience for end customers.

Supply chain partners need to focus on their relationships

As the situation continues to deteriorate for global supply chains, relationships between suppliers and distributors are suffering. Manufacturers are sending out notices which inform distributors and retailers that their prices and discounts are subject to change without notice.  They are also warning that special orders, promotions, and other benefits are no longer available. Meanwhile, some distributors are canceling orders while others are desperately trying to refill depleted inventory to keep up with consumer demand and share what is available equitably.

This uncertainty and inconsistency is putting immense pressure on supply chain partners, which has led to allegations of price gouging, incompetence, and unfairness. These endless recriminations and upheavals in partner relationships hurt everyone – suppliers, distributors, retailers, and ultimately consumers. Trading partners need to stay focused on providing the best customer experience possible.  This means they have to be open with each other about business objectives, potential costs and risks, and the status of contracts and rebates.

Transparency and open communication are necessary to craft a mutually beneficial go-to-market strategy which shares costs, protects margins for all parties, and increases customer confidence. This is why companies should adopt a digital platform that will allow them to share data, eliminate silos, and ensure visibility (a top priority among industry executives) at every link of the supply chain. This won’t just build healthier relationships between supply chain partners – it will also help them identify additional sources of revenue at a time when extra revenue is extremely difficult to come by.

How rebates can maintain partner relationships

One of the most critical elements of any healthy relationship between supply chain partners is alignment on goals, delivery schedules, volumes, operations, and a range of other issues. Alignment is especially important in times of economic volatility, as manufacturers and distributors have to be capable of adapting to rapidly changing circumstances without wasting product or alienating consumers with delays and other inconveniences. One of the factors that makes today’s economic environment particularly difficult for the supply chain sector is the fact that consumer demands (for delivery times, pickup options, real-time tracking, etc.) have only become more stringent despite the crises faced by manufacturers and distributors.

As part of strategic pricing, rebates can help companies address consumer demands, mitigate risks, and forge stronger relationships with one another. This is because rebates enable supply chain partners to set price strategies and deliver competitive quotes that are in line with consumer demand, while allowing them to course-correct when projections aren’t aligned with reality. When you’re equipped to model, forecast, and track rebates with your trading partners, you’ll be in a strong position to maintain customer loyalty while reducing the chances of disputes that can undermine your relationships. Instead of inflexible ERP systems (or worse, manual rebate tracking with spreadsheets), a comprehensive rebate management system can get supply chain partners out of their silos and facilitate open communication and collaboration.

Amid all the economic chaos today, it’s vital to work with your supply chain partners – not against them. By focusing on alignment and transparency at every link of the supply chain, companies will build healthier relationships and continue to provide the best possible experiences for their customers.



Research Project Examines COVID’s Impact on Globalization and Maritime Transport

Since 2020, the world’s economy has been facing the largest issue of the last decade, COVID-19. Many companies were and still are struggling with this situation (lockdowns, restrictions, etc.), and others are taking advantage of it (e.g. food and health industries, online markets, e-commerce). Currently, the world population and enterprises are trying to deal with the situation while living with uncertainty.

I recently supervised a team of researchers from SKEMA Business School in Lille, France, to examine the coronavirus pandemic’s impact on globalization and maritime transport. The findings were more optimistic than we anticipated.

Globalization is here

“The COVID-19 crisis accelerated an expansion of e-commerce towards new firms, customers and types of products,” according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). “This has provided customers with access to a significant variety of products from the convenience and safety of their homes and has enabled firms to continue operation despite contact restrictions and other confinement measures.”

Local and international products were shipped around the world; globalization is here.

In Maritime transport sector, demand exceeds supply

The maritime transport sector did not struggle during the lockdown. It was better than ever. However, during the last six months, the transport sector has been facing global issues; container shortages, increases in freight prices and the delay of ships (port congestion).

Currently, the demand for a container is larger than the supply. Most of the containers are docked in Asia and southeast Asia and are used only for long-distance between China and the U.S. & the EU. This is because this is the most profitable route. This directly affects the availability of the containers.

On the other side, lockdowns in the EU and U.S. have resulted in less manpower at ports. At the same time, there is more export from China to the EU and U.S. Shipping companies maximize their profit by accepting only one-way transport from Asia to the EU and U.S. Consequently, there are a lack of returns and container shortages in Asia. What are maritime shipping firms doing to address these issues and how do they see operations in the future?

To answer these questions, we conducted several detailed interviews with global maritime shipping firms and customers. This is what they said:

  1. They need to manage safety stock better.
  2. They need to build long-term contracts with transporters.
  3. They need to have good relationships (trust) with suppliers and transporters.
  4. They need to implement Lean Six Sigma management to improve efficiency and improve the process.

Some large firms are taking an expanded approach. Amazon, for example, is purchasing its own containers and leasing dedicated ships. Ships filled with large blue containers with the “smile” on the side are appearing globally.

A bright future following a dim pandemic

Tragically, COVID has impacted the world, but the feedback in our research is surprisingly either neutral or positive, which was very unexpected. The concept of globalization and maritime shipping have not suffered as much as we thought, and have either remained the same or improved during this crisis. Global maritime shipping firms and customers are implementing improved management practices (Lean Six Sigma); building better relationships; and “rethinking” the future and seeing opportunities. Building back better is the way they see it, and the future is bright.

Author’s Bio

Dr. Kevin McCormack teaches Operations and Supply Chain Management at Northwood University. He wrote the above piece to summarize a research project he supervised. The team’s researchers were Georges-Alexandre Courquin and Sacha Rebaudo, of SKEMA Business School in Lille, France.


3 Pivotal Trends Expanding Fitness Equipment Market by 2027

The global fitness equipment market is slated to gain significant momentum over the forthcoming years, given the robust focus on maintaining health & well-being worldwide. The escalating adoption of sedentary lifestyle and the resultant increase in the prominence of adverse health conditions such as heart disease have stressed the need to fit exercise into the daily routine.

There has been a substantial rise in the demand for connected devices owing to the rapid advancements in technology, with digital connectivity considerably revolutionizing the fitness industry. In addition, the seamless connection of devices through the deployment of IoT, Bluetooth, GPS, and other technologies
will further add impetus to the overall fitness equipment business over the forecast spell.

As per Global Market Insights, Inc. estimates, the global fitness equipment market size is expected to register revenue of over $25 billion by 2027.

Following are 3 trends augmenting fitness equipment industry share:

1. Rapid introduction of remote workout sessions amid COVID-19

Mounting demand for online fitness sessions, along with the escalating number of fitness centers and health clubs in the MEA and Latin America, will further contribute to the overall fitness equipment market forecast in years ahead.

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, the fitness industry has been observing a significant upsurge, with manufacturers rapidly introducing multiple compact fitness products to be installed at their homes. For example, in March 2021, Lifepro unveiled two in-home, adjustable dumbbell sets, PowerFlow Plus and PowerUp, designed to offer affordable and professional-grade workouts.

Rising prevalence of chronic heart diseases has also led to high awareness about fitness equipment and their uses. As per the CDC, heart disease has emerged as the predominant cause of death among the ethnic and racial groups in the United States, thus resulting in the increased consumption of cardiovascular equipment.

2. Rising adoption of stationary exercise bikes due to compact size

Considering the equipment, the exercise bikes segment is projected to register a considerable revenue in years ahead, on account of the increasing adoption of stationary exercise bikes due to their compact size, ease of installation, and other health benefits. The product is capable of improving oxygen & blood flow throughout the body as well as effectively strengthening lungs, heart, and muscles.

With regards to the end use spectrum, the global fitness equipment market from the hotel segment will hold an appreciable share in years to come, which can be credited to the rapid incorporation of fitness centers in the burgeoning hospitality sector. The segmental growth will further be boosted by the accelerating introduction of solutions that are tailored to meet the specific hotel requirements.

3. Growing number of health-conscious consumers in APAC region

On the regional front, the Asia Pacific fitness equipment industry is set to depict a remarkable growth rate through 2027, due to the rising disposable incomes, strong product demand in countries like India, South Korea, and China, and increasing population of health-conscious consumers. The regional industry will further be fostered by the presence of large youth and working population base. Consumers across the region are currently placing high emphasis on stress management, thus motivating them to conduct several recreational activities and exercises on the daily basis.

Key fitness equipment market participants are focusing on varied strategies such as innovative product launches and mergers & acquisitions to solidify their position and capture a large market share. To illustrate, acquired a fitness startup Tread in June 2021 to launch the hardware-at-home vertical, with an objective to become one of the leading fitness equipment brands in India.
In essence, high economic growth, adoption of the sedentary lifestyle, especially due to the COVID-19 lockdown measures, and subsequent surge in prevalence of cardiovascular and chronic diseases across the globe are among the major drivers for strong adoption of advanced fitness equipment over the foreseeable future.