Our relationship with 3o Ltd has been of key strategic significance to our business in recent years and has allowed us to maintain a competitive position within our own marketplace. Working with 3o Ltd we have been able to successfully procure key products off-shore, making significant savings and maintaining (and in some cases improving) product quality. 3o’s input has been critical in achieving this and their presence ‘on the ground’ ensures that a proactive approach is taken and any issues are dealt with rapidly.
In a market of high volume manufactured products, we found that import replacement was a critical path the business had to create in order to successfully compete. Given that we are traditionally a manufacturer, this is not our core competency and several barriers became evident in the sourcing of those products. Issues such as identifying suppliers, communication regarding requirements, quality, transportation and ongoing improvements in cost reduction became increasingly taxing on valuable internal resources.
With the appointment of 3o we found that we could focus on local supply and manufacture while the imported product was being managed on our behalf. The cost to employ a procurement resource with the necessary skills to efficiently source product overseas is far greater than the cost to employ 3o to conduct the same business on our behalf. In addition to the day-to-day sourcing of new products through our local agent, we have the advantage of 3o people on the ground in those parts of the world with our interests in mind rather than the suppliers’. This is an advantage many local manufacturers or importers in companies our size have to compete with.
As part of our supply agreement 3o are dedicated to continuously improving prices, as this is the primary competitive advantage we have in this particular market and in some ways allows a sustainable edge over our competitors moving forward.