While much is unknown about the long-term impact of coronavirus, retail supply chains will certainly look different once the crisis is past, industry observers agree. Multichannel Merchant spoke with experts from enVista, Le Tote and Johnson Stevens to get their views on the current situation and where things are headed.
Just two months after announcing it was exploring strategic alternatives, including selling off one or more of its business units but keeping its LTL services intact, the company pulled this option off the table due to the effects of the coronavirus on markets. XPO had been looking at divestiture after a two-year, $8 billion acquisition spree.
While most of retail is in the doldrums due to coronavirus, grocers are seeing explosive growth, and e-grocery has been accelerating rapidly due to shutdowns. Scott DeGraeve, COO and co-founder of Locai Solutions, and Doug Baker, VP, industry relations at FMI, discuss what they’re seeing across the sector, and how it will change.
These are truly unprecedented times. Strikes at ports and fuel prices sometimes disrupt supply chains, but the coronavirus pandemic is causing disruption to offshore manufacturing and shipping patterns that hasn’t been seen since World War II. Here are some observations on the impact based on feedback from multichannel sellers.
With the rapid escalation of the coronavirus situation in recent weeks, and in consideration of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s most current recommendations, Ecommerce Operations Summit 2020 is being postponed until later this year at a date to be determined. Stay tuned for more details.
Amazon has temporarily suspended fulfillment of non-essential items through FBA through April 5, due to high coronavirus-related demand. Meanwhile, retail and DTC brands are closing their doors, while UPS assures customers their deliveries are safe, and major e-grocery delivery app downloads are setting records daily.
Midwest grocery chain Hy-Vee is moving fulfillment of online orders from a network of four fulfillment centers back to its retail stores. The facilities, in Eagan, MN, Des Moines, IA, Omaha, NE and Kansas City, MO, will be closed later this month. The network and logistics made same-day fulfillment difficult, executives said.
Panic buying continues to cause empty grocery shelves due to the coronavirus panic, with heavier clusters in affected states as grocery retailers are starting to ration supplies. Same-day delivery providers Instacart and Postmates have expanded a “leave it at my door” option as more spooked shoppers opt for no physical contact.