Purolator USA has announced plans to work with automotive aftermarket manufacturers to help customers in that industry manage logistics costs. Purolator, which says its action comes at a time when the aftermarket industry is affected by the economic downturn facing the automotive industry as a whole, says it will work closely with its existing customers in this segment, and also will reach out to others in the industry to ensure that logistics plans are as cost-effective and time-efficient as possible.
“We have seen firsthand the impact that the current credit crisis and overall economic downturn is having on our automotive aftermarket customers,” says Conal Finnegan, director of business development for the Jericho, N.Y.-based company. “It’s really a double-edged sword. On the one hand, more people are choosing to hang on to their existing vehicles, so the demand is high for parts and supplies. But at the same time, the cost of business has really soared, making it difficult for many manufacturers to operate.”
Finnegan says his company’s customer service and sales teams are hard at work evaluating its aftermarket customers’ logistics plans, and recommending changes as warranted to help ensure more efficient delivery schedules, often at a lower cost. “For example, a business could see a considerable savings by using a ground option, rather by sending goods via air,” he says.
Purolator says it offers customers access to its extensive Canadian distribution network, through which virtually unimpeded delivery service is ensured; this often means that a shipment can travel across the border to its final destination without a costly distribution center stopover. Purolator says its extensive network also means that shipments can be consolidated, thereby reducing costs and delivery times.
In addition, Purolator says it offers expertise in navigating the cross-border logistics process; through its Purolator Trade Solutions, a team of regulatory and trade specialists work with customers to ensure regulatory compliance and to take advantage of U.S. and Canadian programs designed to facilitate trade opportunities. Trade Solutions specialists help ensure that shipments cross the border as quickly as possible, and that all fees and duties are kept to a minimum.
The U.S. automotive aftermarket industry generated more than $285 billion in sales during 2007, and is expected to exceed that number this year, Finnegan says. “We are committed to our customers in this industry, and to working with them to develop a logistics program that takes advantage or multiple options and solutions,” he says.