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Impact of Suez Canal events on Richmond Interiors

CEO Lex Tiggeler: 'We are putting more pressure on suppliers to reduce delivery times'

The recent events in the Suez Canal have had a global impact on supply chains and production processes. spoke with Lex Tiggeler, CEO of Richmond Interiors, to gain insight into the specific challenges they are encountering.

Lex Tiggeler, CEO of Richmond Interiors.

Has the situation in the Suez Canal affected your supply chain and production processes in China?
Lex: 'Delays are the biggest issue. We can no longer meet the requested delivery time for out-of-stock products. The containers that sailed this month have tripled in price, partly due to the rush for Chinese New Year.'

What specific challenges are you currently experiencing as a result of the Suez Canal events?
'For the trade shows in Paris and Birmingham, many new collections were ordered that are now only arriving after the trade show. As a result, we had to fly in many products.
Luckily, we have a lot in stock, but some products have been delayed by 3-4 weeks due to detouring.

Have you had to incur additional costs due to these delays, and if so, in what way?
'Yes, we had to fly in many samples.'

How do you communicate with suppliers in China about the consequences of the situation in the Suez Canal?
'We put more pressure on suppliers to limit delivery time.'

Have you noticed that your suppliers are also affected by this situation?
'Not yet, there are still enough containers available, but this could change due to this disruption, as happened during the pandemic.'

Have you considered alternative routes for your goods, or do you use air freight to reduce delays?
'That's fine for samples, but in other cases it's too expensive.'

Are there specific measures you are considering or have taken to address future supply chain problems?
'We are considering to add more stock items to bridge this.'

Have the delivery delays affected your contractual agreements with suppliers?
'No, this is force majeure.'

Are there clauses in your contracts that specifically relate to situations like the Suez Canal incident?
'Yes, shipping companies are trying to apply all possible clauses.'

Are you considering making changes to your future supply chain planning to avoid or better manage such situations?

How do you work with logistics partners and other stakeholders to minimise the impact of the incident?
'We contact our partners daily to get containers out of the port as quickly as possible.'

Have you learned lessons about collaboration and communication with your partners in times of unexpected events?
'Yes, inform customers as soon as possible if products are delayed due to such events. And ensure that the new expected delivery time is not set too tight to avoid having to keep updating. A message that an item is coming a little earlier is nicer than three delay updates.'

For more information:
Richmond Interiors
Butter 17
1713 GM Obdam
+31 (0) 226 450 846
[email protected]

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