Amazon Beats Apple in Battle for Supply Chain Leadership
LONDON, November 27, 2012
LONDON, November 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
Global poll of over 1,000 executives reveals that the e-commerce giant is more
admired than its Californian rival on all major supply chain attributes except
Amazon is more widely admired than Apple for supply chain excellence,
according to research published today by SCM World, the leading global
community of supply chain practitioners.
(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20121127/579658 )
In a poll of 1,136 executives, 58% said they admired Amazon most overall for
the way it operates its supply chain, compared with 37% who picked Apple (5%
The Seattle-based retailer also came out top on three of the four supply chain
attributes that survey participants were asked to rate the two companies on:
agility, collaboration and execution.
Amazon is locked in a high-profile battle with Apple in the fast-growing
market for tablet devices and the digital content - music, movies, apps and
books - consumed on them. The companies' rival products, the Kindle Fire and
iPad, are expected to be among the hottest purchases this Christmas.
The survey results are a reversal of Gartner's Supply Chain Top 25 for 2012,
which placed Apple first and Amazon second. Its ranking was based on the votes
of 173 practitioners and with half of the total score determined by companies'
Kevin O'Marah, Head of Faculty at SCM World and co-author of a new report,
Apple and Amazon: Lessons for the Rest of Us, said: "The purpose of our
research was to establish which of these two leading companies is most admired
by the global supply chain community for the way it manages its supply chain,
and to understand what lessons they have to teach other companies.
"The results show clearly that the majority of supply chain professionals
believe that Amazon - and not Apple - is the master of supply chain
excellence," added O'Marah, a former Group Vice President for Supply Chain at
Gartner and co-creator, in 2004, of the (then AMR Research) Supply Chain Top
25 annual ranking.
On agility (defined as the ability to quickly and cost-effectively shift
amounts and/or types of production and delivery to improve operational
performance in volatile conditions), 62% of practitioners in SCM World's poll
voted for Amazon, compared with 33% who picked Apple.
On collaboration (the ability to work across organisational boundaries to
solve systemic operational problems and create new value for both customers
and partners), 59% chose Amazon, versus 31% for Apple.
And on execution (the consistent and reliable delivery against commitments and
within budgeted expenses), practitioners backed Amazon by 57% to 38%.
However, Apple won hands down on the fourth key characteristic of supply chain
excellence - innovation - taking a massive 78% of the vote, compared with just
19% for Amazon.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
About the research
A total of 1,136 supply chain practitioners completed an SCM World online
survey between 26 October and 9 November 2012. They work in a wide variety of
sectors - including hi tech, consumer goods, logistics & distribution and
retail - and are based across the major regions of the world: 43% in EMEA, 41%
in the Americas and 14% in Asia-Pacific.
About SCM World
SCM World is the leading global community and think-tank for senior-level
supply chain executives. More than 150 companies from across multiple industry
sectors use SCM World's programme of end-user-led webinars, live events and
research reports to enhance supply chain learning and development. They
include Nike, P&G, Unilever, Cisco, HP, Starbucks, Nestlé, GlaxoSmithKline,
AT&T, Shell, DuPont, BASF, Philips and Intel. For more information, visit
To request a copy of the report, Apple and Amazon: Lessons for the Rest of Us,
or to arrange an interview with its author, Kevin O'Marah, please contact:
Senior Marketing Executive
SOURCE SCM World
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