January 12, 2021
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Trends & Technology
Honda will be moving ahead with a $200 million investment in its Anna, Ohio, engine plant with the help of a $2.8 million development grant from JobsOhio. Honda's investment plan will add 120 jobs to more than 2,300 jobs already at the plant.
Full Story: Springfield News-Sun (Ohio) (tiered subscription model) (1/11) 
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US manufacturers' orders for machine tools fell 13.3% month-to-month in November, although the $330.3 million total was up 1.4% from a year before, according to data from the Association for Manufacturing Technology. For full-year 2020 through November, orders were down 18.7% from the year-earlier period.
Full Story: American Machinist (free registration) (1/11) 
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Lean practices in manufacturing shouldn't be undertaken as sudden, temporary initiatives but rather as long-term habits, writes Chagrin River Consulting principal Rick Bohan. "What will I do differently, starting tomorrow and continuing every day/week, to help sustain the lean initiative?" is a question everyone in manufacturing should ask, Bohan argues.
Full Story: IndustryWeek (1/11) 
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WD-40 says it's having success with e-commerce sales through B2B marketplaces and retailer websites, not only in the US but in all regions where it operates. The company increased overall sales by 26% in the latest quarter.
Full Story: Digital Commerce 360 (1/11) 
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Innovations and Adaptations in Supply Chain
As retailers enter 2021, they need to be ready for both in-store and online shopping – and adaptability is key. The ability to quickly adopt supply chain innovations is paramount to success, if not survival. This whitepaper dives into how omnichannel technology and fulfillment services have become essential to retailers' success as they work to meet the needs of their customers and manage their supply chain. Download the whitepaper
Supply Chain
Logistics businesses bucked the trend of rising national unemployment by adding 52,900 freight transport and distribution sector jobs, 37,400 courier positions, 8,200 warehouse jobs and 7,300 trucking positions in December, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Experts say hiring is expected to continue this year due to the e-commerce boom and stronger output from manufacturers to meet consumer demand.
Full Story: FreightWaves/American Shipper (1/8),  The Wall Street Journal (1/8) 
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Up Next in Commerce: Traffic Surging?
With site traffic up 37% YoY, now is a unique moment in customer acquisition to build long term relationships with your new customers. This webinar on Feb. 3rd will cover how to leverage subscriptions as a key part of the customer journey, plus get tips to improve the financial performance of your B2C site. Join Us
Industrial IoT
Collaborative robots have become more mobile and flexible, allowing metal fabricators to maneuver them to press brakes and use them to form parts. In the future, finishing and other physically demanding tasks could be more capably performed by cobots, freeing up employees for other duties.
Full Story: The Fabricator online (1/11) 
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A Path to Profitability: 2021 Manufacturing Trends
This year is shaping up to be a year of advancement for US manufacturing. Our Jan. 27th SmartSummit will explore: how technology will help manufacturers this year, why a localized supply chain is gaining favor and actions manufacturers must take to boost profitability now and in the future. Our panel of experts will offer new-year strategies and real-world examples of how best to succeed. Register today and join us
Chemical manufacturer Henkel and unnamed US manufacturers are among industrial companies using wrist-worn devices from Kinexion that help track worker movements and ensure social distancing. The wristbands emit ultra-broadband signals and issue a warning when wearers are within six feet of each other for more than five seconds.
Full Story: The New York Times (1/12) 
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Bridgestone Americas can fulfill its commitment to improving sustainability by focusing on low rolling resistance in its tires and designing tires that can be retreaded multiple times, says President and CEO Paolo Ferrari. "The company that only seeks profit will never thrive," Ferrari says.
Full Story: Reuters (1/11) 
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NAM News
Useful Shipping Tips from NAM Specialist
Determining freight density can be complicated and an inaccurate classification can affect the price of your shipment. Check out the latest vlog featuring the NAM Shipping Specialist for guidance on calculating the correct density and classification for your shipment and view a demonstration of the Freight Density Calculator. Learn more about the NAM Shipping program which provides discounts on shipping and freight, along with personalized shipping assistance.
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Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there.
Will Rogers,
actor, performer, humorist, columnist
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