Nikon Focuses on Supply Chain Innovation — and Makes New Product Distribution a Snap
Top consumer goods manufacturers now recognize that success requires more than just making market-leading products. Having the right distribution network is just as critical. Nikon Inc. is the world’s leader in precision optics, 35mm and digital imaging technology. So it’s no surprise that when the company saw the next big trend in photographic technology — digital cameras — they were ready to deliver with some of the most advanced product designs in the marketplace. But to ensure that retailers could meet the demand of tech-hungry consumers and professional photographers, Nikon, with the help of UPS Supply Chain Solutions, reengineered its distribution network to keep them well supplied.
R E S U LT S
GEOGRAPHIC AREA SERVED CHALLENGE SOLUTION United States, Latin America and the Caribbean
Design and implement new distribution strategy to introduce Nikon product line.
To support the launch of its new digital cameras, Nikon knew that customer service capabilities needed to be completely up to speed from the start and that distributors and retailers would require up-to-the-minute information about product availability. While the company had previously handled new product distribution in-house, this time Nikon realized that burdening its existing infrastructure with a new, demanding, high-profile product line could impact customer service performance adversely. “In our business, it’s not enough just to produce leading-edge products,” said Arnold Kamen, Nikon’s Vice President of Operations and Customer Service. “Having the ability — and visibility — to predict how much merchandise is available and when it can be distributed makes the difference in staying ahead of customers’ needs.” For Nikon, that meant applying its well-known talent for innovation to creating an entirely new