Larry Lewis of Vanton gives his perspective on the state of the industry.
What are your thoughts regarding Build America, Buy America? How has that impacted your company?
- For us it wasn’t so much of a ‘Build America, Buy America’ philosophy that we were striving for but rather it was the desire to maintain closer relationships with our vendors and suppliers. The higher costs associated with inventory and production were far outweighed by our ability to achieve greater control over quality and be better prepared to offer more timely and dependable deliveries.
How have any price increases of products or materials impacted you or your company?
- Those issues somewhat dovetail with what we are currently experiencing relative to the issues related to ever-increasing prices, material shortages, timely deliveries, assorted surcharges, and overall supply chain concerns. Our business has been and continues, knock wood, to be robust. Availability of commodity and engineered goods that meet quoted delivery dates are of paramount importance. Price has become a secondary consideration in our pursuit of continued customer satisfaction. Like other manufacturers, Vanton continues to experience dramatic price increases for raw materials, commodity items, engineered components, labor, and transportation. Vanton has modified its traditional purchasing strategies by aggressively sourcing and maintaining higher inventory levels with the goal of being able to continue providing shorter lead times than the industry standard.