Regional supply chain leaders were revealed at Gartner Supply Chain Executive Conference 2014 yesterday.
Gartner, has revealed its annual ranking of the top 15 supply chain organisations headquartered in Europe at its annual Supply Chain Executive Conference, which takes place in London this week.
Gartner identified the top 15 performers, based on a combination of financial metrics (revenue growth, return on assets [ROA] and inventory), and the opinion of peers and Gartner supply chain analysts (see Table 1).
"The top three companies, Unilever, Inditex and H&M are unchanged from last year as they've continued to lead the pack in supply chain excellence, and Seagate made its debut in the No. 4 spot," said Stan Aronow, research vice president at Gartner. In addition to Seagate, three new companies joined the European top 15 ranking in 2014; Ahold, Delphi Automotive and Reckitt Benckiser.
Unilever has, once again, held onto the No. 1 position in the top 15 rankings in Europe and is ranked fourth in this year's global top 25. For Unilever, transformation is a state of mind, rather than a singular event. Unilever's "Partner to Win" supplier collaboration programme is a key contributor to the company's sustainability agenda to halve its environmental impact by 2020.
Spain's leading fashion retail group, Inditex, maintained the No. 2 spot in Europe and moved up one place to No. 11 on the global top 25. Supply chain control through ownership and in-house execution remains a cornerstone strategy for Inditex. By connecting digital and physical retail, expanding successful country operations and planning sensibly, the retailer is a leading example of how to properly adapt to the ever-changing retail landscape.
Another fashion retailer, Sweden-based H&M, placed at No. 3 in Europe has moved up four places to rank No. 13 globally. H&M has developed a sophisticated supply chain, claiming industry-leading design to in-store times and replenishment systems that are better than other global players in the fast-moving global fashion market.
Seagate, the Irish-registered manufacturer of storage devices, is new to the Gartner European top 25. It debuted in the No. 4 spot in Europe and ranked twentieth in the global top 25. The company showcased an impressive array of operational excellence and customer connection programmes, and a return on assets that is second only to Apple on the high-tech list.
In 2014, global food and beverage multinational, Nestle, moved to the No. 5 spot in Europe and the No. 25 spot globally. Nestle has been very active across several global initiatives to improve the profitability and sustainability of cocoa farms, in an effort to advance living conditions for local farmers. It also has programs focused on biodiversity, such as the Nestle First Milk Sustainability Partnership.
"The underlying trend of an evolving two-speed Europe has become more prominent in 2014. Some European countries have enjoyed continued economic growth with good prospects of mass employment, while others have barely emerged from deep recessions and are battling to sustain economic recovery. Whatever the future might hold for the continent, Europe's leading organizations will continue to use their supply chain functions to drive sustainable growth, execute consumer- driven strategies, and ensure good governance and corporate citizenship," said Mr Aronow.