Robinson Young would like to take the opportunity to provide an update in relation to the Coronavirus. As you can appreciate, the situation is moving incredibly quickly and consequently things will change constantly.
At present, our policy is ‘business as usual but taking sensible precautions to enable us to continue providing a key service’ as long as this is compatible with the approach endorsed by the government and local health authorities.
We have put in place a number of contingency plans whilst doing all that we can to mitigate the risk of infection to our staff, customers and supplier partners.
CONTINGENCIES MADE AT ROBINSON YOUNG
• The board are meeting regularly to review the situation and following official Government advice
• All business internal and external meetings have been postponed/held via video conference
• Finance and IT contingency systems including working from home arrangements have been tested and are now in place for all employees who are able to work from home
• No external visitors are allowed on site, except for those that cannot be avoided (such as delivery drivers, postmen etc)
• Our Warehouse shifts have been separated to minimise risks and to ensure we can carry on delivering essential products to our retailers and customers
INCOMING SUPPLIES OF CHINA MADE PRODUCT
Production – Following the compulsory shut down late February, most of our factories are starting to return to normal; although not running at full capacity due to staff and materials shortages. We are expecting reduced capacity from China over the coming months whilst life slowly returns to ‘normal’. We hold buffer stocks of these products, and our supply chain is working closely to prioritise production of products that are low on stock. We expect some out of stocks for short periods which we are hopeful we can manage with our customers.
For a number of weeks China did not export medical products (gloves, face masks etc) as they were required for domestic use – we are starting to see these restrictions lifted however due to increased global demand and reduced capacity we are likely to see volatile supply (at a period of increased demand) and increased pricing for a number of months.
Shipping: Shipping lines are reducing the number of sailings and as previously mentioned, containers and vessels are in the wrong place, leading to delays at port. We are reviewing options with our forwarders on a daily basis.
SUPPLIES FROM EUROPE
We clearly have seen unprecedented demand for a number of ‘locally produced’ chemical cleaners (wipes, anti bac sprays, hand sanitisers, soaps) which has created supply issues, however, we are starting to see an impact on some other products.
For example – demand at our factory for Chemical Cleaner factory has increased by 50% – the main focus for them is to produce anti-bac products, but that has resulted in limited capacity on other products. They are limited to the number of empty bottles they can hold (due to space). The impact of supply of components and raw materials is starting to be seen – for example triggers are produced in China and supply is becoming limited.
We have increased buffer stocks to try to mitigate any delays from these sources.
Clearly, the situation in both UK and Europe will significantly change over the coming days & weeks and we will be working with our factory partners & will update as the situation becomes clearer.
If there looks like there will be prolonged stock shortages we are looking to resource if this is possible. However, this is not easy – it takes time and has cost implications. As the whole world is being affected by Covid-19 there may be a global capacity shortage, so options could be limited.
We are starting to see large demand spikes on a number of products – including anti-bac sprays, wipes, soaps, hand gels, disinfectants, gloves etc. Clearly, the demand is unprecedented. We are asking that our customers do not bulk order and are trying to ensure that stock is distributed fairly.
Please rest assured that Robinson Young are working tirelessly to do all we can to limit the impact of the Corona Virus to our customer’s operations and our own. Robinson Young will continue to provide updates but if you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact your account manager.
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