The Ugly Truth About Counterfeiting

Nothing has polarized the supply chain like counterfeiting. It has pitted segments of the industry against one another (distributors versus brokers) and more recently divided the channel into two camps: Pro-DNA and anti-DNA. Both of these debates center around proposed solutions to the counterfeit problem in the channel and both have spurred action. But these…

America II Evolves ‘Blended’ Distribution

The distribution categories of yesteryear – catalog, specialty, broadline, independent, franchised – are no longer working for many in the channel. Longtime catalog distributor Digi-Key Corp., for example, no longer publishes a paper catalog. America II Electronics Inc., an independent distributor, has been adding franchises. America II has entered into a global distribution agreement with…

DLA Considers Expanding DNA-Marking Program

In a typical electronics product, a system is only as strong as its weakest link. Therefore, it is the best interest of system builders to ensure none of the parts or subassemblies it uses are suspect. The U.S. Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), which currently uses Applied DNA Sciences’ DNA-based anti-counterfeiting technology for microcircuits, is considering expanding…

Distributors Weigh Tough Talk with Customers

Now that all the “shift happens” puns are done, what is the take-away from the ECIA Executive Conference that was held in Chicago a few weeks ago? One message rang loud and clear: “There were a number of examples of companies that didn’t change with the market and they went out of business,” Chris Beeson,…

Transitional EOL Cuts Last-Time-Buy Pains

Semiconductor End-of-Life (EOL) announcements can cause procurement stress and lines-down situations. When an EOL notification is issued, the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) may find themselves in the position of having to make a last-time-buy (LTB) purchase that will cover the duration of its manufacturing and/or in-field maintenance. Customers that have a large timeline disconnect between the EOL…

Shutdown Has Little Impact on Manufacturing

The recent shutdown by the U.S. government did not appear to have an effect on domestic manufacturing activity, according to the nation’s supply executives. A leading indicator of economic growth, the Institute for Supply Management’s Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI), increased for the fifth straight month to reach 56.4 percent.  A PMI reading above 50 percent…

Distribution: Some Policies No Longer Work

One charter of a trade association is to examine and if possible rectify industry policies and practices that don’t make sense for its members. But there are several issues in the electronics supply chain over which members of the same trade association may never see eye-to-eye. Distributors and suppliers – both members of Electronics Components…

How Digi-Key Manages Expansion

Leading low-volume high-mix distributor Digi-Key Corp. is gradually expanding into the prototype and low-volume production business. In  Digi-Key Ventures Deeper into Supply Chain,  Electronics Purchasing Strategies managing editor Barbara Jorgensen spoke with Dave Doherty, vice president of Global Supplier and Product Operations for Digi-Key, to find out how Digi-Key is managing this growing venture. In the second part…

Why RFID is a Purchasing Dream Tool

Having just attended the RFID Live 2013 conference in San Francisco, I was reminded of the myriad applications for RFID in tracking assets, monitoring systems and transmitting key data to and from sensing and recording devices. As I considered the potential uses of RFID technology for purchasing and operations people, I mentally formulated an end-to-end…