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  • hybrid office zoom mtg 22Furniture mkt on
    high hybrid alert!

    Corp office recovery softer.
    Strong WFH demand slows

    Furniture Market Review Q4'22-23: Covid crushed the corporate furniture market. Leading makers still report -30% demand declines compared with the 2019 norm. During Covid, WFH suppliers like Amazon, Wayfair, DWR (MillerKnoll) exploded with record revenues, now normalizing. We review leaders disappointing results and the new hybrid work developments accelerating the wellness & ergonomics movement e.g. Fellowes. Updated for Steelcase/MillerKnoll

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  • Emperor no clothes 23Old OP Emperors

    have no clothes!

    Trad product sellers outed
    by productivity srvcs shift

    There's been much recession talk recently: macro economic headwinds, high inflation, depressing optimism. How much is real given the huge prices boost on lower volumes? Whilst ex-leaders eg. Acco, HP, Newell, 3M & VOW decline despite complacent commentary, progressive players reinvented to meet the 'personalized productivity service' needs of users. We highlight losers and the big winners..Complete

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  • resilient leaders 23Bouncebackability
    Index Leaderboard

    Q4'22 analysis highlights
    resilient Winners v Losers

    Reports are all in for Business Supply players in Q4'22. Predictably they show inflated profits but weak sales recovery v pre-Covid 'norm' Q4'19. Proficiency Index reports the Leaderboard of makers, wholesalers & dealers' 'Bouncebackability' performance. It covers 100 leading paper & printer makers, hygiene, foodservice and packaging suppliers, OP/furnituremakers and retailers Updated

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  • Screen Shot 2022 12 09 at 2.14.03 PMHealthy Hygiene
    market normalizes

    Who won/lost market share?
    Price inflation average +12%

    Hygiene is now #1 business supply category alongside technology. Progressive business suppliers: brandmakers, dealers have pivoted into hygiene, safety, foodservice & packaging, WFH-tech & wellness services. Proficiency Index Q4'22 analysis is almost complete with brand volumes slowing, boosted by double-digit price hikes. Updated for KPTissue, Sappi & Suzano. Diversey delayed to 22Mar

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  • women marketeers top 9 jul16Top 50 Women
    Marketers 2023

    Leaders in creativity, sales,
    brand growth performance

    Marketing to businesses by brandmakers & resellers was traditionally dominated by men. As we celebrate International Women's Day, Proficiency Index recognises the most successful women leaders. This is 16th edition of 'Top 50 Women in Business Supply', the market's real growth achievers, including new entrants from progressive independent dealers.

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Screen Shot 2023 03 16 at 1.36.32 PMMighty 3M mired in 
mounting mgt mess

Earplug/PFAS legal issues;
& Health Care div. spinoff
distract from core focus

3M's cfo Monish Patolawala spoke with JPMorgan's Steve Tusa at its Industrials Conference yesterday. 3M's market cap is down -30% over past year, reflecting legal issues with defective miltary earplugs and PFAS chemicals. Meanwhile, it's spinning off the Health Care (25% mix) division and struggling with volume decline in its main businesses. Analysis here...

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smith gerry depot deckchair shifter 21Depot buys back
Vora stake. Why?

Multi-distractions divert
from core incompetence

On 28 Dec'22 activist VC HG Vora Capital took a 12% stake in ODP Corp aka Office Depot plus a board seat. Now as part of its $1Bn buyback plan ODP bought shares at a similar price cutting Vora's stake to 8%. What's going on? Is sinking ship Capt Gerry Smith shifting deck chairs to distract from its core incompetence? 

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Screen Shot 2023 03 15 at 11.10.28 AMWestrock: doing
good, doing well

African bean farms move
from poverty->productivity

Westrock Coffee
, the leading custom/private label coffee and tea provider to US restaurants, reported Q4'22 results. We talked with CEO Scott Ford about progress and plans for the "poverty to productivity" purpose driven beans importer from Rwanda through roasting and distribution processes

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Tillis Jason Bob Imperial 23Imperial Dade 
ramp up RDCs

Open new distribution
hubs in Nevada & Florida

VC Advent owned Imperial Dade has rolled up 62 acquisitions in recent years. Now the hygiene & foodservice distributor is opening its 3rd & 4th RDCs in Las Vegas and Orlando to support growth  The persistent question remains: will Advent really invest in integrating systems and brand integration?

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Screen Shot 2023 03 16 at 6.17.59 PMHoneywell chief
passes baton 

New CEO to Accelerate
systems growth platform

Honeywell International 
the $35Bn aerospace, building, tech, safety and productivity solutions conglomerate announced veteran and current COO, Vimal Kapur (pic left), will succeed Darius Adamczyk (pic right) as CEO.  Adamczyk commented optimistically on his successor's Accelerator platform's promise...

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Fenby Stephen Midwich 22Midwich's mighty 
AV mkt advance

Powerful volume + acqs
boost Pro share gains

International AV specialist distributor Midwich confirmed record results for FY2022. CEO Stephen Fenby was excited about its growing portfolio in Unified Comms (UC) and visual coms that boosted its tremendous growth beyond £1.2Bn ($1.5Bn). "The AV market is highly resistant to recession fears" he said.

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Screen Shot 2023 03 13 at 12.41.48 PMPacific & Marco
dispute MPS lead

Top Managed Productivity
Service Providers' latest

MPS is dying! Long live "Managed Technology Services' providers that drive productivity improvement for customers. We profile latest progress of the Top 8 resellers that led the US market in 2022, although slowing in acquisition activity of regional independents. First, we look at the two $400m+ in sales, market leaders Marco and Pacific (ceo Doug Pitassi, pic left) ...

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Maruggi Aurelio ApogeeA i l i n g  Apogee
acqs French stake

HP sub's JV doubles down
on MPS desperate decline

UK MPS subsidiary Apogee, bought in 2016 for $500m has seen sales dive from $300m to less than $100m in 2022. Now it's invested in a French MPS joint venture? What is ceo Aurelio Maruggi's plan given the whole MPS market is cannibalizing rapidly, mirroring HP's own protectionist practices?

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Tescon hurtsTesco screwing
small suppliers?

Tough new fees imposed
on brand webstore sales

Suppliers and farmers have warned tough new fees imposed by Tesco on produce sold through its webstore could put them out of business. The UK's #1 supermarket announced last week ‘fulfilment fees’ per item sold online. CEO Ken Murphy reports results next month. Will the leopards change its spots?

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Lores Enrique HP 22 arrogant

HP's H e a v y

Chops channel, Instant Ink
12m mbrs w $1Bn+ sales?

is again causing print customers angst, as new firmware locks out the use of third-party ink. The news comes days after its Instant Ink subscription service was criticised as dodgy, difficult & far more expensive than claimed. We report Enrique Lores' protectionist remarks at the Morgan Stanley conference that ignored inflationary price hikes that offset plunging volumes, now less than half of 2010 levels.

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