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Marketing professor's annual buyer-supplier relationship study shows improvement for Detroit automakers
Monday, May 23, 2011
Marketing professor's annual buyer-supplier relationship study shows improvement for Detroit automakers

In 11 years of study by SBA Marketing Professor John Henke's Planning Perspectives Inc. (PPI), Japanese automakers have topped the list when it comes to relationships with their suppliers. This year's study, however, shows that Detroit automakers are catching up.


Considered one of the nation's top authorities on buyer-supplier working relations, Henke is president of  PPI, a management consulting firm. His firm's annual  automotive industry survey dissects the relationships between each of the six major North American car companies, including General Motors, Nissan and Toyota, and their Tier 1 production suppliers. Henke is often sought out by the media, as well as car companies and suppliers, because of this expertise.


A May 23 Detroit News article analyzes the importance of the latest survey results which reports that traditionally Japanese automakers have dominated, reflecting traditionally strong relationships with their supply base.


The article says Henke indicates the pressures on Honda and Toyota to improve profitability in North America are being reflected in more aggressive attitudes toward suppliers. At the same time, the Detroit automakers are developing greater trust with the companies that provide their parts.

"It is clear that the domestics are getting better, and quite uniformly," says Henke in the Detroit News article. "Toyota and Honda continue dropping," while Nissan is "just hanging on, neither improving nor getting worse." The article reports that Henke thinks Toyota has bottomed out and will continue to improve.


Read the full Detroit News article here
For more about Professor's Henke's expertise, read this article from SBA Insight.

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