Retailers and brands face an uphill battle. Just as the economy begins to show signs of life and retailers prepare to rebuild inventory levels, we're seeing rising production costs. Prices for cotton have surged 150% since August of 2010. Some analysts say there's room to climb higher. Other commodities from oil to lumber continue to move higher. Concerns about rising costs of raw materials, labor and transportation continue to come up on earnings calls. What can be done about it?
You can't lower the price of raw materials or labor. But with prices rising it's more important than ever to get your own costs down. Overhead costs, processing costs, capital costs... look across your supply chain - into the extended network of parties and layers involved. There's room for efficiency and savings. Now is the time to address it.
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